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JK Rowling Defends Trump’s Right to Be ‘Worse Than Voldemort’

JK Rowling doesn’t agree with Trump, but defends his right to express his opinion. 

Updated
World
2 min read
JK Rowling upheld Trump as an example of freedom of speech. (Photo: iStockphoto/ Reuters/Altered by <b>The Quint</b>)

In a powerful speech at the PEN American Literary Gala on Monday night, author JK Rowling defended Donald Trump’s right to be ‘offensive and bigoted’.

In the past, Rowling has made no bones about her displeasure with Trump’s remarks. She even took to Twitter, to comment on Trump’s comparison with Voldemort – but only to defend the dreaded Dark Lord.

It comes as somewhat of a surprise that a liberal, feminist individual should defend Trump, who is known to make strong and often unsettling statements about women and immigration policies, among other things. But the point Rowling attempted to make was that though she did not agree with what Trump said, she would nevertheless defend his right to say it.

I find almost everything that Mr Trump says objectionable. I consider him offensive and bigoted. But he has my full support to come to my country and be offensive and bigoted there. His freedom to speak protects my freedom to call him a bigot. His freedom guarantees mine.
JK Rowling
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Rowling’s speech comes at an important time, as many parts of the world erupt into a peculiar and often violent conversation about (in)tolerance.

Closer to home, the question of nationalism and patriotism has entered the public discourse in a way that has taken the mainstream media by storm. As tensions escalate, nothing is more important than allowing disparate, alternate voices to speak. But it would go against the very principle of freedom of speech and expression if all opinions – including the ‘offensive and bigoted’ ones – are not allowed to voice themselves equally.

If my offended feelings can justify a travel ban on Donald Trump, I have no moral ground on which to argue that those offended by feminism or the fight for transgender rights or universal suffrage should not oppress campaigners for those causes. 
JK Rowling

And who better than Rowling to capture the popular imagination and convey this very important message in today’s times of strife.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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