JK Rowling's 'contempt for women' accusation over misogyny law is 'astonishing and illogical', Humza Yousaf tells LBC

17 April 2024, 14:59

Humza Yousaf hits back at JK Rowling's accusations against him

Alan Zycinski

By Alan Zycinski

Humza Yousaf has hit back at accusations from JK Rowling that he's showing 'absolute contempt for women and their rights'.

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The Harry Potter author made the claim on X yesterday while attacking the Scottish Government's Hate Crime Act and planned misogyny legislation.

Sharing an article headlined 'Yousaf: Trans women will be protected under misogyny law', she wrote: "Once again, Humza Yousaf makes his absolute contempt for women and their rights clear.

"Women were excluded from his nonsensical hate crime law, now he introduces a 'misogyny law' designed to also protect men.

"Trans-identified men have sent violent threats to women but the likes of Beth Douglas (attached) now receive double protection from Yousaf: for his so-called gender identity, and for also being, in the eyes of the Scottish government, a woman."

Read more: JK Rowling wouldn't accept apology from Harry Potter stars Daniel Ratcliffe and Emma Watson over trans rights row

Read more: JK Rowling vows to stand by ‘lower-profile women’ who are pursued by police under Scotland’s new hate crime law

But following Ms Rowling's comments, Scotland's First Minister has branded her words as "astonishing" and illogical.

Mr Yousaf told LBC: "It is an astonishing accusation to suggest that the Government's that's bringing forward a bill to tackle misogyny has contempt for women. It doesn't make any logical sense.

"And what I would say to people, everybody, is unfortunately we are living in a day and age where not only is disinformation being spread but clearly many issues end up becoming culture war issues, and they shouldn't be.

"This is an issue where I would encourage anybody simply to look at the facts.

"And there's been some very good commentary from legal minds like Baroness Kennedy and like Jonathan Brown KC in a thread which I shared earlier today which actually set out the facts.

"And that's all I ask people to do: look at the facts.

"And what we've got in the proposed misogyny bill - which we will seek to bring forward as soon as we can post summer recess - will be a bill that will make sure we tackle the pervasive nature of misogyny wherever it exists here in Scotland".

The Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act came into force earlier this month having been passed by MSPs in 2021, consolidating existing legislation and creating a new offence of stirring up hatred against protected characteristics like age, disability, sexual orientation and transgender identity.

Mr Yousaf said at the time of its implementation that he was "very proud" of the new laws, saying they will help protect against a "rising tide" of hatred.

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