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The ignorance continues to hop out today and every day, so hold tight as we turn this story about J.K. Rowling’s net worth into a teachable moment. Maybe you saw the Harry Potter author’s name trending recently after she tweeted some transphobic comments (again). And maybe you’re curious how she’s still making all that dough in spite of it. We have answers for that; but while we’re on the topic of money, let’s also take note of what actress Katie Leung—who played the only East Asian character in all of the Harry Potter franchise—had to say about donating to transgender support funds today.
Leung played “Cho Chang” in the Harry Potter films—a character whose racist name has drawn criticism from readers in the past. The topic was brought up again soon after Rowling tweeted her thoughts about an article headline, “Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 world for people who menstruate.” The Harry Potter author took issue with the trans-inclusive language of “people who menstruate.”
“I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out,” Rowling tweeted, referencing women. “Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”
Followers immediately pointed out the false logic of Rowling’s tweet, explaining that there are trans women who do not menstruate, along with other women who have either had hysterectomies, entered menopause, or do not menstruate due to ongoing hormonal issues. To negate the womanhood of any of these communities is missing the point.
While Rowling tried to, uh, defend herself, Harry Potter critics continued to weigh in on social media about some of Rowling’s other problematic topics—namely, her poor representation of Black characters and other people of color. “Cho Chang” was up for discussion.
“So, you want my thoughts on Cho Chang? Okay, here goes…,” actress Leung tweeted when she caught wind of the discussion. But instead of weighing in, she cleverly proved her opinion in another way. Leung linked out to several organizations raising funds for Black transfolk, including UK Black Pride, the Homeless Black Trans Women fund, and a Change.org Black Trans Women protection petition.
If you read on to see J.K. Rowling’s net worth, consider pressing her to donate some of her hefty paychecks to Black trans lives instead. OK? OK.
How does J.K. Rowling make money?
Forbes’ profile on J.K. Rowling lists her as the second-highest-paid author in world thanks to her Harry Potter novels. According to the publication, however, her seven books on the subject are not her biggest cash cow today. Instead, Rowling makes a fortune off her franchise at large, which includes the Wizarding World at Universal Studios, and Broadway’s Harry Potter play, ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. The latter clocked nearly $2.3 million in ticket sales in a single week, according to Forbes.
How does J.K. Rowling spend her money?
Now this is interesting. Coming from a woman who still doesn’t seem to understand her own transphobia, Rowling actually has a pretty generous track record. She is apparently the only billionaire in history to lose their billionaire status after donating so much money. In May 2020 alone, Rowling reportedly donated $1.25 million to homeless and domestic violence victims. Imagine if she donated to this fund, too.
What is J.K. Rowling’s net worth in 2020?
While J.K Rowling’s net worth has been as high as $1 billion in the past, Forbes estimates her current net worth to have dropped. As of 2020, Rowling’s net worth is $60 million.