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Eleanor Morton @EleanorMorton
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Me and JK Rowling; A Thread: I grew up not just with Harry Potter but down the road from JK Rowling, in Edinburgh. A place where it was easy to imagine the world she had created had come to life. Like most children and teens, I was obsessed with the books and couldn't wait for
each new one. Going past her house on the bus I would desperately try and peer over the fence. Reading interviews I felt inspired by her story, her clear love of Scotland and her struggles as a single mum. Like me, she seemed to be a true socialist at heart, and the books
reflected that too; they were full of stories about justice, love and kindness. I was perhaps a bit let down when I found out her kids attended private school, since Edinburgh has so many excellent state schools, mine being one of them. But she was still a hero, an inspiration.
Then it was 2010, the first year I was old enough to vote, and everything changed. Having never really been bothered either way before, I became more and more aware of the struggles Scotland had to deal with and began to question what exactly we gained from the Union. I was
at university, surrounded by passionate, like-minded young socialists who saw the injustices being thrust upon the welfare system and did not feel that Scotland stood for this. I felt more excited than I ever had been before about politics; suddenly there seemed to be new
possibilities and a future that wasn't tied to the UK and all the archaic nastiness that came with it. And although I met some passionate people, I genuinely never met any of the crazed, English-hating braveheart nationalists that so many unionists are obsessed with. If anyone
was going to be faced with this, it was me - I sounded English, I was very middle-class but no one ever attacked me for this. I'm sure those people existed but the hundreds I met were rational, good and sincere people who just wanted a chance to govern their own country. And from
my perspective, although I felt insecure about constantly being labelled as English, I had close English family with whom I disagreed but loved no less. And I knew plenty of pro-independence English people. So when I first started seeing news articles and tweets about Rowling's
attack on Indy supporters, I felt confused. Wasn't she a socialist? Didn't she know about the foodbanks? Didn't she know about trident, and the tories and the NHS? Could one of my childhood hero's really be so far off the mark about this? I kept hoping she wold change her mind
but the further the campaign got, the more she decried it. I even put an Indy leaflet through her door in 2014, there's a video on here of me doing it. I hadn't given up hope that this single mum who'd seen the pre-Holyrood, poverty stricken parts of Edinburgh would want
more agency for this country. But now, seeing her latest attacks, her truly hurtful aligning of the independence movement with UKIP, BNP et al (not to mention the uncomfortable Johnny Depp incident), I feel my views of her and HP are tainted forever. I can never go back to the
love I once felt for her, the lessons I learned from those books. Now, like so many pro-indy Potter fans of my generation, it's become a sad memory of a more naive time. I still remember when I queued up to meet her at the Book Festival, when I was about 9. It was one of
best days of my life so far, getting that autograph, meeting her, talking to her, being inspired by her. Now I feel like I'm looking up at the high castle walls of a king who only hears what he wants to. So although I'm glad I grew up with Harry Potter, I'm also glad
I grew up from Harry Potter. I can see the world in all it's shades of grey and it's no longer as simple as good and evil, bad guys good guys, gifted wizards and talentless muggles. I still wish she would understand, but I'm ready to accept she doesn't. End.
Also Elephant Cafe is overrated. #harrypotter #jkrowling #indyref #scotland
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