Saturday, March 2, 2024

Overheard at Table 1: Harry Potter and the Censors


Heard something today about Harry Potter ... a pro-LGBTQ speaker stating that anybody who has Harry Potter items in their social media bio, or references to Harry Potter in their work or lives, may need to rethink their position, as their support of Harry Potter may be painful to the community because of the creator, JK Rowling.

JK Rowling has, as we all know, in recent years, become quite a controversial figure for her anti-LGBTQ views.

However, for me, personally, Harry Potter represents a period in my life in which I read those books as bedtimes stories to my grade-school son, and it was one of the best memories that I have of him, as his mom & I divorced when he was very young, and he rejected me as a teenager.

So, when I think of Harry Potter, all I have in my heart is a tender memory of my first born son, who will probably never speak to me again in this life.

Now, I understand my personal pain does not measure to the trauma and rejection that this community has suffered; however, I do take umbrage at the subtle censorship by the speaker in the beginning paragraph of this missive: Short version - throw out Harry Potter because it hurts LGBTQ people.

Again, I reiterate my theory that, to be a healthy literate public, we must learn to separate the art from the artist.  Whatever views Rowling has should be immaterial to her creation, which has now a life of its own independent of her.   Harry Potter should be enjoyed by all - and by that, I mean ALL people, regardless of orientation.  Because, while I will never proclaim the Potter books as particularly good writing, per se, the characters are lovable and relatable, and the story is a wonderful underdog tale, and a surmounting of all odd so that good will prevail, and the ultimate message that Love truly does conquer all.

I am truly sorry that Rowling's comments are hurtful to a large segment of the human race - but I will stand firm that, for me personally, Harry Potter is truly all that I have left of my only-begotten son ... and I have made it my ground to stand against all forms of literary censorship, regardless of the source or their rationale.


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