JK Rowling, famed author of the Harry Potter series, caused a huge stir on Twitter when Elon Musk announced that the terms “cis” and “cisgender” would be considered slurs on the platform.
Rowling, who has previously faced controversy and backlash over her comments about sexual orientation, said she disagreed with the use of the terms, labeling “cis” as “ideological language” and claiming everyone has the right to disagree.
According to Rowling’s June 21 tweet, “‘Cis’ is ideological language expressing belief in unfalsifiable notions of gender identity.”
The famous author further stated, “You have every right to believe in unprovable essences that may or may not correspond to gender bodies, but the rest of us have the right to disagree and refuse to adopt your jargon.”.
Elon Musk appeared to support Rowling’s stance, responding to her post with a simple “Exactly.”
However, not all Twitter users shared the same opinion, with many criticizing Rowling’s remarks on the topic.
Some suggested she should prioritize kindness in her interactions, while one user accused her of, “hypocrisy of an author who tells a story with words.” story And then rejecting a word that has been used as an adjective for over 30 years, and then expecting her followers to do the same… JK, that’s not jargon, just look it up in the dictionary. “
Those who disagree with Rowling and Musk stress that the term “cis” is not jargon but can be found in dictionaries.
Instead, some users agreed with Rowling and Musk, expressing support for their claims. One user even praised them saying: “You did it 1000%.”
Another user pointed out the stark difference in the level of discussion around terms like “cis” and “neuter pronouns” between the Western world and elsewhere.
Rowling’s comments and subsequent backlash came after Musk announced that the words “cis” and “cisgender” would be considered defamatory speech on the platform, and violators could be punished. Musk’s decision was influenced by cultural commentator James Esses, who shared on Twitter his experience being attacked by activists after expressing his rejection of the word “cis.”
“Yesterday, after posting a tweet saying I reject the word ‘cis’ and don’t want to be called ‘cis,’ I received a deluge of messages from trans activists calling me a ‘sissy’ and telling me I’m ‘cis’, either or I don’t like it, ‘Esses’ Twitter read.
This isn’t the first time the 57-year-old author has taken a controversial stance in an ongoing cultural debate. In 2020, she faced a backlash from fans when she suggested using the word “woman” in response to an article about “menstruating people.” Rowling tweeted: “‘Menstruation.’ I’m sure there was once a word for those. Someone to help me. Wumben? Wimpund? Wooomud?”
In another tweet, the author of “The Ickabog” questioned gender identity and argued that removing the concept of gender would prevent meaningful discussion about people’s lives.
Rowling has previously defended her views on gender, saying her research on gender and sexuality over the past three years has shaped her views. She stresses not to assume that individuals lack knowledge just because they think differently.