Jesse Singal's “When Children Say They’re Trans” piece: resources & a response

On June 19, 2018, I published a post (at this link, and with the same title) in response to the then recently released Jesse Singal article When Children Say They’re Trans. It would later become the cover article for The Atlantic's August 2018 print magazine, bearing the moral-panic-inducing headline: “Your Child Says She’s Trans. She Wants Hormones and Surgery. She’s 13.”

My original post is archived for posterity's sake. Basically, it started out as a few links to Twitter threads about the article, followed by periodic updates whenever new critiques or developments arose. It made for very messy reading! So in this rendition, I've reorganized things in a (mostly) chronological bullet-point fashion. So here we go:

NOTE: the previous two bullet points provide evidence that Singal didn't merely seek out random detransitioners and parents of trans kids (as most journalists would do if they were hoping to write a balanced story), but rather he specifically recruited individuals from anti-trans activist communities, then purposely withheld their affiliations with such groups from readers.

  • In May 2019, Gillian Branstetter reported that Singal's Atlantic article was cited as evidence in a federal court case intended to undo transgender legal protections.
  • In April 2021, Emily Gorcenski published Jesse Singal Got More Wrong Than He Thinks, a deep-dive into Singal's misinterpretations of studies on desistance, which he cites in several of his trans-themed articles, including the Atlantic piece.
  • Also in April 2021, GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) created an entry for Singal as part of their accountability project, much of it centered on false, misleading, and unsubstantiated claims he made in his Atlantic article.
  • Finally, in September 2020, an article was published revealing that The Atlantic cover photo for Singal's desistance/detransition-heavy article was of a happily transitioned trans man. I'm sure Singal had nothing to do with the cover photo, but I mention it here because many have found it profoundly ironic given the thrust of his article.

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Images
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12
Writings
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