The LGB Alliance’s first annual conference is going exactly how you would expect, with its founder boasting about a cardboard cutout of JK Rowling.
The so-called “advocacy group” is hosting its first conference Thursday (21 October) at the QEII Centre in London, with Graham Linehan, Maya Forstater and Rosie Duffield among the list of scheduled speakers.
Just after the one-day event kicked off, the LGB Alliance posted a tweet of its founder, Malcolm Clark, posing with a cardboard cutout of JK Rowling, who has drawn fierce criticism in recent years for her views on trans lives.
“How popular do you think this cut out of a certain shero is likely to be today?” the group wrote. “Thank you for everything you do for LGB people, JK Rowling.”
— LGB Alliance (@ALLIANCELGB) October 21, 2021
Understandably, Twitter users dubbed the LGB Alliance’s cardboard cutout of the writer “sad”.
It’s actually really funny that they wanted her to come, but she didn’t, so this is the best they managed. https://t.co/zPwrRjqmIf
— 👻👻 I Have No Gender and I Must Scream 👻👻 (@Tranarchic) October 21, 2021
Heh no this is a major coup that @alliancelgb managed to book such a major celebrity cutout as this – really shows they’re up and coming and a force to be reckoned with. 🤭
— Damien #FreePalestine (@Dams_Lefty) October 21, 2021
This is a ‘charity’ that’s supposedly set up to advance the rights of LGB people, worshipping a straight woman because she’s publicly trans-hostile! 🤔
Way to show your whole-ass agenda (along with being pitifully sad) 🤷🏼♀️ https://t.co/qB97YIVigQ
— Helen🏳️⚧️💙 (@mimmymum) October 21, 2021
HELPPP THIS IS THE SADDEST THING EVER https://t.co/XuI5pgonkE
— hritik roshan (@fuckvianet) October 21, 2021
It’s not clear whether JK Rowling was invited to the LGB Alliance conference, nor whether she’s aware of the cut-out cameo – though she does follow the group on Twitter.
Despite reports on social media that attendees to the conference were in the low hundreds, the LGB Alliance, founded in 2019, is one of Britain’s loudest anti-trans groups.
Granted charity status earlier this year to the anger of LGBT+ activists, the LGB Alliance has compared LGBT+ inclusion to bestiality, has refused to denounce its neo-Nazi and homophobic support base and has defended working with the anti-LGBT+ and anti-abortion Heritage Foundation. Clark has previously denounced LGBT+ clubs in schools, saying they shouldn’t exist because of “predatory gay teachers”.
Nevertheless, the government-owned QEII Centre told PinkNews that the space undertook “due diligence” before agreeing to host the LGB Alliance. It is an “apolitical” conference venue, a representative said.
A trans advocacy group organising a protest against the conference told PinkNews that legitimising the LGB Alliance “is dangerous as they deliberately misrepresent the trans community while being aligned with far-right groups”.
The group purports to “promote the rights of lesbians, bisexuals and gay men”. However, Transgender Action Block continued: “They may be most dangerous to trans and non-binary individuals, but their actions place the community as a whole within striking distance.
“Many of them believe themselves to be feminists, but we believe feminists should not be this willing to throw other women – cis women, too – under the bus.
“This is a bastardised version of feminism, which preys on people by providing an easy scapegoat – trans people.
“We do not believe that this path will end in anything less than fascism.”
“We have waited too long and fought too hard for what we have already,” Transgender Action Block added, “but they and their allies are taking what little voice we have away from us.
“Today they are inside, and we are outside on our streets, where our rights were won – not by the people who pushed for acceptability, but by transgender, non-binary, gender-nonconforming, poor, Black and other minority groups working together to make our voices heard.”
The holy trinity of Harry Potter stars – Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint – all came out swinging for trans rights shortly after she shared a dense essay outlining her opinions on sex and gender last year.
Representatives of JK Rowling declined to comment.