Emma Watson sparks controversy in 'Trans Rights are Human Rights' t-shirt

Months after flashing a temporary #TimesUp tattoo on Oscars night, Emma Watson is once again using her style to express her feminist views.

The actress and activist’s latest Instagram post shows her throwing her support behind the trans community as she strikes a defiant pose in a T-shirt with the slogan “Trans Rights are Human Rights.”

Watson’s message appears to be in response to the U.K. government’s discussion of the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) this week. As the LGBTQ organization Stonewall — which the Harry Potter star tagged in her post — notes, trans activists are calling for the GRA to be reformed so that it recognizes nonbinary identities and makes it easier to legally self-determine gender for trans folks of all ages, including an end to requiring that trans statuses be dependent upon medical diagnosis or approval.

But these trans-friendly reforms have received pushback from some women’s rights activists, who argue that they would violate the rights and protections they have fought to obtain for themselves. The reforms have also been opposed by social conservatives who balk at advancing LGBTQ rights.

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Emma Watson out and about
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 22: Actress Emma Watson attends 'The Circle' Paris Photocall at Hotel Le Bristol on June 22, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Laurent Viteur/WireImage)
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 22: Actress Emma Watson attends 'The Circle' Paris Photocall at Hotel Le Bristol on June 22, 2017 in Paris, France. (Photo by Laurent Viteur/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 07: Emma Watson poses in the press room at the 2017 MTV Movie and TV Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on May 7, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 07: Actress Emma Watson attends the 2017 MTV Movie And TV Awards at The Shrine Auditorium on May 7, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 27: Actress Emma Watson visits 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon' at Rockefeller Center on April 27, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by J. Kempin/Getty Images for NBC)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 26: Tom Hanks and Emma Watson attend the premiere of 'The Circle' during the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival at Borough of Manhattan Community College on April 26, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 26: Emma Watson attends the premiere of 'The Circle' during the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival at Borough of Manhattan Community College on April 26, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 13: Actress Emma Watson poses backstage at the New York special screening of Disney's live-action adaptation 'Beauty and the Beast' at Alice Tully Hall on March 13, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Walt Disney Studios)
Actress Emma Watson attends the New York special screening of Disney's live-action adaptation 'Beauty and the Beast' at Alice Tully Hall on March 13, 2017 in New York City. / AFP PHOTO / ANGELA WEISS (Photo credit should read ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 10: Actress Emma Watson is seen outside 'Good Morning America' on March 10, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Raymond Hall/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 10: Actress Emma Watson attends SiriusXM's 'Town Hall' with Emma Watson; 'Town Hall' to air on Entertainment Weekly Radio on March 10, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 07: Emma Watson is seen at LAX on March 07, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by starzfly/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE - 'Jimmy Kimmel Live' airs every weeknight at 11:35 p.m. EST and features a diverse lineup of guests that include celebrities, athletes, musical acts, comedians and human interest subjects, along with comedy bits and a house band. The guests for Monday, March 6 included Emma Watson (Disney's 'Beauty and the Beast'), Ian Somerhalder ('The Vampire Diaries') and musical guest Mash-up performance Lady AnteBell Biv DeVoe (this is a mash-up of Lady Antebellum and Bell Biv DeVoe). (Randy Holmes/ABC via Getty Images) EMMA WATSON
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 06: Emma Watson is seen at 'Jimmy Kimmel Live' on March 06, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by RB/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - MARCH 05: Emma Watson at the 'Beauty and the Beast' Press Conference at the Montage Hotel on March 5, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Vera Anderson/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 02: Actress Emma Watson arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere 'Beauty And The Beast' at El Capitan Theatre on March 2, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
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Watson’s post makes it clear that she’s both a feminist and a trans ally.  Now, plenty of people are responding — with both praise and anger.

Many applauded the Beauty and the Beast actress for taking a stand.

Watson’s shirt has also sparked transphobic comments as well as criticism from those who accuse her of putting trans organizations before feminism.

Well, Hermione never did back down from a debate…

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