Baroness Nicholson is accused of bullying British transgender model
JK Rowling’s charity co-founder Tory peer Baroness Nicholson is accused of bullying British transgender model and calling her a ‘weird creature’ in tweets
- The politician is thought to have made the comments about Munroe Bergdorf
- In a deleted tweet, Baroness Nicholson also misgenders the social activist
- Bergdorf said ‘she has also deliberately misgendered me and begun retweeting dangerous propaganda.’
JK Rowling’s charity co-founder Baroness Nicholson has been accused of bullying a British transgender model and calling her a ‘weird creature’.
The politician is thought to have made the comments on Twitter about Munroe Bergdorf, an outspoken advocate for social justice.
In another, now deleted tweet, Baroness Nicholson also misgenders the model and claims it was a typing error, as reported by PinkNews.
She said: ‘Musht be shome mishtake, my finger typed M. but the invisible editor forgot that I also use French.’
Bergdorf responded on her Instagram account she said: ‘In addition to calling me ‘a weird creature’ and sharing transphobic memes featuring abuse that I received three years ago, reframed as if I said it myself.’
JK Rowling and Baroness Emma Nicholson JK Rowling launches her new book ‘The Tales of Beedle the Bard’ at Sotheby’s, London, Britain – 10 Dec 2007
Bergdorf added: ‘she has also deliberately misgendered me and begun retweeting dangerous propaganda from anti-trans hate group Transgender Trend, who actively go into schools to disseminate anti-trans rhetoric.’
Speaking to MailOnline Baroness Nicholson did not deny misgendering the model, but said she not not aware what pronouns she uses and it was not clear on her Twitter account.
She said: ‘This really cannot be the case because this person who I do not know does not detail on their Twitter profile their preferred pronouns. There are two sexes and 112 genders so you cannot choose.
‘It’s a bit of a red herring, if transgender people want to be called by a specific pronoun you have to make it clear to people.’ She added that she was trying to write ‘M.’ but made an error.
She also admitted to calling the model a ‘wild creature’ but said it was a reference to Shakespeare’s Sonnet Number 1 that she been engaging with during lockdown. ‘It’s about a creature who is really wonderful and beautiful,’ she added.
The peer said the incident and accusations of bullying are ‘just a load of rubbish’ and that she and Ms Bergdorf ‘have different views’ which they share online and disagree about ‘but that’s politics.’
Baroness Nicholson previously co-founded a charity with JK Rowling called the Children’s High Level Group (CHLG). The Harry Potter author has been mired in controversy for comments she made on social media and in an essay published online.
Bergdorf responded on her Instagram account and said that Nicholson is ‘a follower of trans exclusionary radical feminism, or as they call it gender critical feminism’
It comes as four authors have resigned from JK Rowling’s literary agency after accusing it of failing to issue a public statement in support of transgender rights and equality.
Fox Fisher, Drew Davies and Ugla Stefanía Kristjönudóttir Jónsdóttir issued a joint statement to announce their resignation from The Blair Partnership.
A fourth author is also understood to have quit but wished to remain anonymous.
Rowling was criticised for comments she made on social media and wrote an essay, published on her personal website, expressing ‘deep concerns’ about transgender activism.
The statement made by Fisher, Davies and Jónsdóttir said: ‘This decision is not made lightly, and we are saddened and disappointed it has come to this.
‘After J. K. Rowling’s — who is also signed to the agency — public comments on transgender issues, we reached out to the agency with an invitation to reaffirm their stance to transgender rights and equality.
‘After our talks with them, we felt that they were unable to commit to any action that we thought was appropriate and meaningful.
‘Freedom of speech can only be upheld if the structural inequalities that hinder equal opportunities for underrepresented groups are challenged and changed.’
Jónsdóttir, also known as Owl Fisher and co-author of the Trans Teen Survival Guide, suggested the agency should conduct staff training with the group All About Trans but ‘these requests weren’t met positively by the management’, The Guardian reported.
The statement added: ‘As LGBTQIA writers ourselves we feel strongly about having an agency that supports our rights at all avenues, and does not endorse views that go against our values and principles.’
The three authors are marking their resignation by donating to Shakti Women’s Aid and have also asked others to donate.
Shakti Women’s Aid is a charity that is part of the Scottish Women’s Aid movement and supports BAME women who are experiencing or have experienced domestic abuse.
A spokesperson for The Blair Partnership told The Guardian: ‘We support the rights of all of our clients to express their thoughts and beliefs, and we believe in freedom of speech. Publishing and the creative arts are dependent on these things. It is our duty, as an agency to support all of our clients in this fundamental freedom and we do not comment on their individual views.
‘We are disappointed by the decision that four clients have taken to part ways with the agency. To reiterate, we believe in freedom of speech for all; these clients have decided to leave because we did not meet their demands to be re-educated to their point of view. We respect their right to pursue what they feel is the correct course of action.
‘We value all our authors’ voices and, as an agency, champion equality and inclusivity. We remain committed to making the agency the most welcoming environment it can be for everyone. The diversity of our clients’ voices is our strength and we take enormous pride from each and every one.’
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