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JK Rowling in ‘arrest me’ challenge over hate crime law

JK Rowling has publicly challenged Scotland's hate crime legislation, questioning its impact on free speech, particularly regarding discussions about gender identity.
Through social media, she invited law enforcement to arrest her if her comments, which include referring to certain transgender individuals as men, were considered illegal under the new law.

Scotland's Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act 2021 introduces offences for "stirring up hatred" on various grounds, including transgender identity, but not for gender.

Rowling criticizes this focus, arguing it prioritizes the protection of certain groups over the rights of women and girls, and could hinder discussions on women's safety and rights.

She pointed to specific criminal cases to emphasize her concerns. Rowling's stance has sparked no police action so far, despite the law carrying penalties of up to seven years in jail for offenses deemed threatening or abusive with the intent to stir up hatred.

The Scottish government defends the law as balancing protection from hate with freedom of expression, while critics, including Rowling, fear it may suppress legitimate debate.

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