Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

JK Rowling downhill

I distinctly remember immense suspense before the last Harry Potter books were (written and) published. What a frightful amount of power the author had. No one should have so much uncontrolled might. But in the liberal West, she had more clout than many a tyrant. Think about it.

Harry could have died. I think that fiction authors, totally free to create any ending they want, who chose a bad ending should be executed (almost).

In the end, she could have revealed that the cute hero, Harry, was a wicked master imposter and the one we thought a villain all the time was actually the good one fighting evil. It would have shocked millions of young readers with self-mutilations and suicides all over the globe sky-rocketing.

Or worse, both parties could have both outed as evil powers, vying for world domination. Think about how devastated and disillusioned many young readers would have been by such a nihilistic plot ending.

Or even worse, she could have ended her Potter series with a plea for removal of every notion of evil from our minds and laws as evil would be subjective and people with certain preferences have been discriminated against for centuries, like liars, rapists, and murderers. All publishers would probably have rejected such a text, but the manuscript would have leaked onto the Internet anyway eroding natural morality among our youths.

Or, very differently, Harry could have come out Gay, upsetting millions of semi-tolerant parents and libraries. She could have been a monumental force for LGBTQIA rights — could’ve. (She actually revealed, off-script, that another character was Gay but he had died in the end — the old Hollywood school that for decades could not produce a Gay movie with a happy end.)

Do you see her incredible power? And she wasn’t tested or chosen by any institute that could vouch for her integrity or moral compass. And she was not an elected official with accountability or reviewers.

And she still has an enormous influence. Anything she says, sensible or not sensible, will get world coverage. So far, she’s always stood for the underdog and oppressed. But that reputation is now spoiled.

Rowling has recently started trashing the trans community, not inhibited by too much information but motivated by lots of animosities. She has ‘explained’ her resentment by saying that she was the victim of (male) sexual violence. Such a public admission is always brave, from any person and from any celebrity. Kudos for that. But it cannot ‘justify’ attacks on even more vulnerable people. The life expectancy of transmen is 35 years!

To have Rowling reverse course will be a truly uphill battle. But no one will accept any other outcome. She’d better clean up her record and apologize.

But in the end, Rowling is not the problem. The real challenge is for all cisgender people to become aware of their cisgender privilege and to learn to listen, without judgment, to transgenders and have enough empathy to speak up for rights and safety for all trans people everywhere always.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to two Dutch survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (statistics), Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Sometimes he's misunderstood because he has such a wide vision that never fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what many love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500th blog post with the ToI. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having a peek outside of your cultural bubble. * NEW: To see other blog posts by him, his overspill blog you can reach by clicking on the Website icon next to his picture at the head of every post. There you may find precursors to later TOI blog posts, addition or corrections of published TOI blog posts, blog posts the TOI will not carry, and some thoughts that are too short to be a TOI blog post. Also, the TOI only allows for one blog post per blogger per 24 hours. Sometimes, he has more to say than that. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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