JK Rowling issues apology over Donald Trump tweets

JK Rowling has apologised for wrongly accusing President Donald Trump of ignoring a disabled child.

Tuesday, 1st August 2017, 11:13 pm
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 1:01 pm
JK Rowling has apologised via Twitter. Picture; File Pic

The Harry Potter author had called the US leader “horrible” after a video clip appeared to show the US leader refusing to shake the boy’s hand at a White House event last week.

“How stunning, and how horrible, that Trump cannot bring himself to shake the hand of a small boy who only wanted to touch the president,” Rowling tweeted to her 11 million followers on Monday.

“Trump imitated a disabled reporter. Now he pretends not to see a child in a wheelchair, as though frightened he might catch his condition.”

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Rowling also tweeted her mother had used a wheelchair and “I witnessed people uncomfortable around her disability, but if they had a shred of decency they got over it.”

“So yes, that clip of Trump looking deliberately over a disabled child’s head ignoring his outstretched hand, has touched me on the raw.”

But Marjorie Kelly Weer, whose son Monty Rowling was referring to, corrected the author on Facebook.

Ms Weer wrote: “If someone can please get a message to JK Rowling: Trump didn’t snub my son and Monty wasn’t even trying to shake his hand.”

“He’s three and hand shaking is not his thing. He was showing off his newly acquired secret service patch.”

Rowling had seen an edited video on Twitter, but a longer video showed Trump, who was due to make a speech on Obamacare, walking into the room and stopping to bend down to welcome Monty, making him the first person he spoke to in the room. • READ MORE: Piers Morgan calls JK Rowling ‘lying hypocrite’ over Trump tweets

Rowling “apologised unreservedly” on Twitter.

She wrote: “Re: my tweets about the small boy in a wheelchair whose proffered hand the president appeared to ignore in press footage.

“Multiple sources have informed me that was not a full or accurate representation of their interaction. I very clearly projected my own sensitivities around the issue of disabled people being overlooked or ignored onto the images I saw and if that caused any distress to that boy or his family, I apologise unreservedly.”

Rowling has deleted her original tweets on the subject.

But she has not apologised to President Trump himself.

In May Rowling was criticised by novelist Joanna Trollope who compared her to Kim Kardashian West for her “insatiable” social media appetite.

Famous Twitter spats include those with columnists Katie Hopkins over the Manchester Arena bombing and with Piers Morgan on a range of issues including Morgan’s refusal to describe President Trump’s travel ruling as a 
Muslim ban.

Kevin Williamson, writer and founder of publisher Rebel Inc, which helped launch Irvine Welsh’s career, defending Rowling at the time, said: “I have more of a problem with people who won’t discuss their views and are bigots underneath it all.”