J.K. Rowling defended her decision to make Dumbledore gay on Twitter in style, when an ex-fan started trolling her. Afterwards, she received praise from many other fans for the way she handled the situation.
After the release of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, the author admitted that Dumbledore had been gay all along. While many fans were happy or just did not really care about the character’s sexuality, some people were deeply offended. One fan was so angry that he tweeted Rowling about it, criticising her for her decision. It took the man seven years to share his anger, but the author did not let that stop her from attacking back.
The Twitter user told the Harry Potter author that he stopped being a fan of the books because of the decision to tell people that Dumbledore did not have the expected sexuality for a headmaster of a school. He claimed that readers were blindsided with the news; news that most people took well and were proud of the author to choose to write in gay heroic character.
Rather than taking the route that many authors would by trying to appease the masses, she suggested that the reader follow Brian Souter, who publicly defended Section 2A of the Scottish Local Government Act. This section banned government from promoting homosexuality, including in schools. The whole act was repealed in 2000, so Souter did not get his way.
While some people applauded Rowling for her way that she used Twitter to defend her decision to make Dumbledore gay, there were people who attacked her further. They attacked her for her way of responding to the upset reader, and the fact that she supports gay rights. She was also attacked for her position in the current debate for Scottish independence, where she personally and financially supports the Better Together campaign. Interestingly enough, Souter supports the Yes campaign and matched Rowling’s £1 million donation towards his own campaign.
She continued to shut down the trolls, by paraphrasing her gay character. Starting by thanking those who did support her, she stated that people would be waiting “a very long time” if they wanted universal popularity on Twitter.
The Harry Potter author is not the first to attack those against her views. Anne Rice made a point that she could not stand those who used Christian beliefs as a guise for their hate speeches. This happened after Rice praised and congratulated Ellen Page for coming out as a lesbian earlier this year. She has supported gay rights for many years, and supports her son as one of the top 10 gay bachelors.
Admitting that a favorite character was gay was a turning point for many Harry Potter fans. While it was revealed after Dumbledore’s death, some fans hated the idea and turned away from the books. However, many others praised the author for her decision and was thankful that she had finally admitted it. There were subtle clues in the writing, but to have the confirmation from the author was a blessing for many. However, Rowling still has people attacking her for the decision, and it leads to her defending her decision to make Dumbledore gay on Twitter in style.
By Alexandria Ingham