English Leben

Dear J.K. Rowling,

first, I want to say that I love your books – I truly do. It took me a while to read Harry Potter but when I did, I fell hopelessly in love with the story and its characters. I used to think that I love you too – in that deeply thankful and admiring way that I love every author who wrote a story that kept me up reading all night and never letting me go even years after I finished it. And as you might know: There are not many of those stories.

Now however, I realized once again who important it is to separate between art and its maker. Because even though a story might touch your heart – even feel like it speaks only to you – the person who wrote it can be a very different story. And that’s the case with you. It’s not because you have a political opinion – I actually happen to agree with most of what you say about Donald Trump – it’s because you seem to be one of those people who believe having an opinion also automatically means you are right. And well, on that I strongly disagree.

You might know where I am going with this, and yes, I am referring to the PewDiePie-comments. The funny thing is, I don’t even like that guy – I only ever watched two videos on his channel completely and both of them due to the recent accusations. Before that I just saw the media stories, even your tweet and kind of agreed with it. I mean making some poor guy hold up a sign that says “Death to all Jews” – that guy has to be a fascist right? Now however, after I did actually research the story – and watched the videos, all thanks to a friend of mine who strongly disagreed with me on all of what I read in the media about it– I feel differently.

First off, I watched the video that caused all this controversy while it was still available on PewDiePies-channel and well…he did go too far with the point he was trying to prove. He actually says so himself at the end of the video. But that’s just it – his point was that we live in a world where you pay 5 dollars on some website and somewhere in the world a guy will hold up a sign with whatever you wrote while dancing to it. That’s just how crazy and stupid the internet – the world really – has gotten.

My personal opinion is that he should have not released the video with that sign but instead made a different video with it saying something less offensive. I mean let’s be honest, if the sign had read “I hate Donald Trump” there would’ve probably been a lot less media outrage (if any). The thing is though, PewDiePie admitted that and he apologized. It might not undo what’s done but it shows regret and it shows responsibility. Again – I still don’t really like the guy but I don’t believe that he is actually a fascist or an anti-Semite. And maybe if you had done any research on the topic you might have come to the same conclusion.

I think having a political opinion is important – it’s even important to voice it. But what you should never forget is that 1) there will always be someone who disagrees with you and 2) having an opinion doesn’t equal being right. In fact, in my opinion, most other political opinions are just plain wrong (and yes, that was sarcasm). What baffles me the most though is that someone who created a character like Rita Skeeter – a “journalist” who did her best to portray Harry Potter as a pitiful attention-seeking young wizard who cried himself to sleep at night, and was in love with his best friend Hermione Granger (ha!) – doesn’t recognize that approach in real life media.

I mean seriously, if you read media today do you not do it with some amount of scepticism? Do you not research stories that really interest you, to see where they originated from? And…well, do you not have people in your life (and I am not talking about Social Media) who disagree with you? From what I’ve seen from your Twitter-persona, it can’t be many. See, I don’t think you deserve the photoshoped Nazi-pictures, but maybe you should reconsider your apparently blind faith in media stories. And maybe you should stop thinking of your opinion as the only right one. That’s really all I wanted to say to you. No threats of burning books, because I still love that story too damn much.

P.S.: I am not arrogant enough to believe that you will actually read this. That’s not why I wrote it – I did write this for me, because I kind of had to say something about it. And as a way to thank my friend – the one who disagreed with me. Because he made me realize how important it is to have someone disagreeing with you from time to time, so you don’t get too lazy sitting on your conclusions and opinions.

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