Trans YouTuber says she ‘feels used’ after guesting on JK Rowling podcast: ‘A lapse in judgement’

Natalie Wynn during one of her YouTube videos

A trans YouTube star has said she regrets being interviewed for an upcoming podcast about JK Rowling.

Natalie Wynn, known on YouTube as ContraPoints, posted a Twitter thread on Thursday (16 February) detailing an interview she had with former Westboro Baptist Church member Megan Phelps-Roper.

Wynn is best known for her series of popular videos discussing societal issues from a left-wing perspective and has even become known for her ability to “deradicalise” far-right group members.

She said agreeing to chat with Phelps-Roper was “a serious lapse in judgment” after she was grilled about her decision to transition.

The former Westboro Baptist Church member – who has renounced the anti-LGBTQ+ hate group’s teachings – announced the limited-part podcast series about JK Rowling last week.

Rowling will attempt to give her side on the controversy surrounding her views on trans rights, in the series which is set to be released next month.

You may like to watch

But activists aren’t so sure the podcast will be as impartial as Phelps-Roper has claimed, especially after Wynn’s comments.

Natalie Wynn during one of her YouTube videos
Natalie Wynn explained that she felt the podcast was coming at the issue from the wrong perspective. (YouTube/ContraPoints)

Wynn explained that, because of Phelps-Roper’s history as what she called a “famous reformed bigot“, she originally believed the interview could be worthwhile.

“She’d spoken to JKR about me, and thought it seemed only right to speak to me about JKR,” Wynn wrote. “This is what was pitched to me.

“I took the bait and consented to a pretty miserable three-hour interrogation about my own transition, as well as the usual ‘concerns’ about trans rights.”

After the interview was over, Wynn was asked for tips about how to approach the subject of the podcast series. She responded to by urging Phelps-Roper not to frame it as a “debate between two equally legitimate sides”.

Wynn said: “It’s now clear that this is exactly what she’s done, how she’s conceptualised the project from the outset.

“Her stance seems to be that trans people and transphobes are equally dogmatic and combative. That if we could all just have a calm, civil conversation, empathy would prevail.”

Phelps-Roper became famous in 2012 following her decision to leave the Westboro Baptist Church – founded by her grandfather – after 26 years of preaching the group’s hateful messages.

Since then, she has criticised the organisation for its bigoted belief system, and has signalled support for homosexuality.

But, in her essay announcing the podcast, Phelps-Roper described Rowling as “a kind of saint” which has raised concerns from pro-trans activists about her supposed impartial position in the series.

“She thinks this way because of her experience leaving the WBC,” Wynn argued. “She’s extrapolated an entire political worldview: the basic problem facing humanity is too much ‘polarisation’.

“Megan does not seem to grasp that trans people are fighting for our lives, our right to exist in society.”

Wynn said she regretted her participation in the series and does not want her involvement to “lend any legitimacy to this”.

She concluded by saying: “I regret my participation and would not have participated had I fully understood the nature of the project.

“I feel I’ve been used and I share the sentiments of other trans people who are speaking out against it.”

Megan Phelps-Roper told PinkNews it “pained her” that Natalie Wynn felt this way – “especially since the show is not out yet” – but added: “I think I understand where she’s coming from.”

“She appears to be extrapolating from an understandable misreading of the show’s title, but the series we’re making is full of complex questions and stories – including from many LGBTQ+ people – rather than conclusions and justifications.

“I know that withholding judgment is not an easy thing to do, but I believe that if she listens to the show through its end, she will see that it isn’t what she fears it to be.”