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Bette Midler Hocus Pocus
Credit: Disney

‘Hocus Pocus’ Star Bette Midler Addresses Comments Deemed Transphobic

On September 30, Disney will release its newest, highly-anticipated sequel Hocus Pocus 2 on Disney+. The movie tells the story of three teenage girls who accidentally bring the Sanderson sisters back to life once again. While the film will see a number of new stars, Bette Midler, Kathy Najimy, and Sarah Jessica Parker are all returning to reprise their roles as Winifred, Mary, and Sarah Sanderson respectively. While the women have been in the press promoting the film, one of them is now in hot water for her social media remarks.

hocus pocus 2

Credit: Disney+

On July 4, Bette Midler posted the following message on her Twitter account:

WOMEN OF THE WORLD! We are being stripped of our rights over our bodies, our lives and even of our name! They don’t call us “women” anymore; they call us “birthing people” or “menstruators”, and even “people with vaginas”! Don’t let them erase you! Every human on earth owes you!

People quickly responded to her controversial tweet, calling the message transphobic, as not all people who give birth are women. A lot of people called her a TERF — a trans-exclusionary radical feminist. Many said that the phrases were simply using more inclusive language. The next day, Midler once again took to the social media platform to share that she had no intentions of sounding like she was against transgender people, she was merely responding to an article she read.

Bette Midler

Credit: ABC

Midler sent out the following thread:

PEOPLE OF THE WORLD! My tweet about women was a response to this fascinating and well written piece in the NYT on July 3rd.  tinyurl.com/2p9dw2th. There was no intention of anything exclusionary or transphobic in what I said;  it wasn’t about that.

It was about the same old shit women – ALL WOMEN – have been putting up with since the cavemen. Even then, men got top billing. But seriously, folks, if anyone who read that tweet thinks I have anything but love for any marginalized people, go to Wikipedia and type in my name.

I’ve fought for marginalized people for as long as I can remember. Still, if you want to dismiss my 60 years of proven love and concern over a tweet that accidentally angered the very people

I have always supported and adored, so be it.   But the truth is, Democracy is slipping through our fingers! I’m all in on trying to save Democracy for ALL PEOPLE. We must unite, because, in case you haven’t been paying attention, divided we will definitely fall.

Midler has been an icon in the gay community for decades and has frequently fought for members of the LGBTQ+ community. She has also spoken out many times against Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the passing of the controversial Parental Rights in Education bill — also called the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.

Hocus Pocus 2 will be available for streaming on Disney+ on September 30. Premier Access will not be required, and anyone with a subscription will be able to watch.

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!