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Jamie Reed vs. transgender people

Jamie Reed is an American activist who wants to eliminate gender affirming healthcare for adolescents and young adults.

Reed’s anti-trans activism has been heavily promoted by other anti-trans activists, including Bari Weiss, Jesse Singal, Azeen Ghorayshi, Jonathan Chait, Andrew Bailey, Emily Yoffe, Stella O’Malley, Sasha Ayad, Konstantin Kisin, Francis Foster, as well as conservative trans activists Aaron Terrell and Aaron Kimberly of Gender Dysphoria Alliance.


Jamie Lynn Smith was born in June 1980. After marrying Joshua David Rickly (born 1982), Jamie began using the name Jamie Lynn Smith-Rickly. During this time, Jamie was apparently using the email

In 2009, Jamie Smith-Rickly, Zachary Smith, and Byron Case founded the Midwestern Liberty Foundation, but it was dissolved by the state of Missouri the following year for failure to submit required documents.

The couple had two children and later divorced.

Jamie then married transgender librarian Tiger Reed. They are raising Jamie’s two children from the first marriage as well as three foster children.

Reed earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri St. Louis and a master’s degree from Washington University in St. Louis. Reed began working at Washington in 2016.

Anti-trans activism

From 2018 until late 2022, Reed was a case manager at the Washington University Pediatric Transgender Center at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.

Reed became increasingly upset that the clinic was not doing more psychological and psychiatric gatekeeping. As with many providers, Washington relied on patients to find a local therapist who would recommend them for treatment to reduce backlogs and improve patient care.

Reed was against prescribing hormone options for minors. Like many other people opposed to youth gender affirming care, Reed considers puberty blockers less problematic than hormones, but opposes those as well. Puberty blockers are a rarely-used short-term option prior to prescribing hormones. Some people opposed to gender affirming care would prefer trans youth to stay on puberty blockers until they are adults, rather than start hormones.

Like many other people opposed to gender affirming care, Reed cites the conservative “Dutch protocol” that used extensive gatekeeping under a nationalized healthcare system.

In an affidavit presented to anti-trans Attorney General Andrew Bailey dated February 7, 2023, Reed stated:

I witnessed staff at the Center provide puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones to children without complete informed parental consent and without an appropriate or accurate assessment of the needs of the child. I witnessed children experience shocking injuries from the medication the Center prescribed. And I saw the Center make no attempt or effort to track adverse outcomes of patients after they left the Center.


One patient came to the Center identifying as a “communist, attack helicopter, human, female, maybe non binary.” The child was in very poor mental health and early on reported that they had no idea their gender identity.


Most children who come into the Center were assigned female at birth. Nearly all of them have serious comorbidities including, autism, ADHD, depression, anxiety, PTSD, trauma histories, OCD, and serious eating disorders.


last year Dr. [Chris] Lewis and Dr. [Sarah] Garwood told the Missouri legislature, “at no point are surgeries on the table for anyone under 18” and also, “surgeries are not an option for anyone under 18 years of age.” This was a lie. The Center regularly refers minors for gender transition surgery. The Center routinely gives out the names and contact information of surgeons to those under the age of 18. At least one gender transition surgery was performed by Dr. Allison Snyder-Warwick at St. Louis Children’s Hospital in the last few years.


The Center had two in-house psychologists. They were Dr. Alex Maixner and Dr. Sarah Girresch-Ward as well as several outside therapists.


Doctors knew that many of our former patients had stopped taking cross-sex hormones and were detransitioning. Doctors did not share this information with parents or children.


Children come into the clinic using pronouns of inanimate objects like “mushroom,” “rock,” or “helicopter.” Children come into the clinic saying they want hormones because they do not want to be gay. Children come in changing their identities on a day-to-day basis. Children come in under clear pressure by a parent to identify in a way inconsistent with the child’s actual identity.


I created a “red flag” list of children where other staff and I had concerns. The doctors told me I had to stop raising these concerns. I was not allowed to maintain the red flag list after that. During the time I was creating the red flag list, noting my concern that these children were not good candidates for permanent, irreversible medication treatment, the doctors would simply send these children to our in-house therapists. Those therapists would inevitably provide letters to the doctors, and then the doctors would say there can’t be any concern over these children because another therapist was fine with prescribing puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones.


One doctor at the Center, Dr. Chris Lewis, is giving patients a drug called Bicalutamide. I know of at least one patient at the Center who was advised by the renal department to stop taking Bicalutamide because the child was experiencing liver damage. The child’s parent reported this to the Center through the patient’s online self-reporting medical chart (MyChart). The parent said they were not the type to sue, but “this could be a huge PR problem for you.”


the Center has prescribed puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones hundreds of times where they should not have.

Reed (2023)

Particularly upsetting to Reed are young people whose identities are fluid:

Patient was on hormones and had decompensating mental health, outlandish name changes, self-diagnosis of multiple personalities (DID).


Patient has desisted in male identity to a vague non binary with their own self-diagnosis of autism. Patient has changed their name numerous times and is clearly struggling with thoughts about desistence,


Patient changed to non-binary identity, then changed preferred name and stated that their identity was shifting day to day.

Reed (2023)

Reed gave several other vivid anecdotes, including one about a youth sex offender, and others about youths with history of self-harm, sexual trauma, forced cross-dressing, factitious blindness, and “gender identities that were likely the result of social contagion.”

2023 Free Press piece

Two days after the affidavit was signed, Reed repeated these allegations for anti-trans activist Bari Weiss.

  • “clinics like the one where I worked are creating a whole cohort of kids with atypical genitals—and most of these teens haven’t even had sex yet.”
  • “Some weeks it felt as though almost our entire caseload was nothing but disturbed young people.”
  • “Another disturbing aspect of the center was its lack of regard for the rights of parents.”
  • “In 2019, a new group of people appeared on my radar: desisters and detransitioners.”
  • “I believe that to ensure the safety of American children, we need a moratorium on the hormonal and surgical treatment of young people with gender dysphoria.”

Reed and the clinic’s nurse, Karen Hamon, kept a private spreadsheet, which they called the “red flag list.” Following a 2021 review that contained criticisms and a 2022 retreat where Reed was allegedly told “Get on board, or get out,” Reed transferred to a different department.

2023 New York Times profile

Azeen Ghorayshi of the New York Times presented Reed as part of a long-running “cisgender person under siege” series the paper has been running since the early 2000s.

Ghorayshi mentioned the following people:

  • Jamie Reed, former case manager at a youth gender clinic at Washington University in St. Louis
  • Bari Weiss, anti-trans activist who first published Reed’s allegations
  • Andrew Bailey, Missouri’s anti-trans Attorney General
  • Colleen Schrappen, reporter at St. Louis Post-Dispatch
  • Annelise Hanshaw, reporter at Missouri Independent
  • Andrew D. Martin, Washington University in St. Louis Chancellor

Reporter Evan Urquhart wrote, “unlike other stories covering these allegations, the Times downplays the falsehoods and seeks to make a case that despite Reed’s lies there’s something to be taken seriously in her attacks on a highly-regarded, University-linked clinic serving transgender youth.”


In 2024 a subpoena was issued to Reed in the matter of Noe v. Parson (Missouri case # 23AC-CC04530). In it, Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc. and ACLU of Missouri Foundation requested communication between Reed and Karen Hamon, as well as any communication with Missouri officials and families at Washington University Pediatric Transgender Center at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.

The subpoena also requested “All communications, including any documents exchanged, concerning Gender-Affirming Care involving media or between you and any media outlet or any member of the media,” as well as specifically requesting communications with Jesse Singal. Those requests were later removed.

The subpoena also requested any communication with the following organizations:


Urquhart, Evan (March 8, 2023). There Are Two Sides to the Debate on Health Care for Trans Kids. Here’s What You’re Missing About One of Them. Slate

Reed, Erin (October 13, 2023). Family Of Missouri Trans Kid: Jamie Reed Lied About Liver Damage, Caused By COVID Drug And Not HRT. Erin in the Morning

Urquhart, Evan (August 23, 2023). NYT Treats Key Source’s Many Lies as an Aside in Latest Anti-Trans Smear. Assigned

Cooper, Ryan (March 2, 2023). The Useful Idiots Fueling the Right-Wing Transphobia Panic. The American Prospect

Henry, Vesper; Tirrell, Alyssa (April 13, 2023). Timeline: The unfolding saga between The Free Press and a Missouri gender clinic. Media Matters for America

Schrappen, Colleen (March 20, 2023). Parents of patients at St. Louis transgender center fear privacy breaches, file complaints. St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Reed, Jamie (February 7, 2023) Affidavit of Jamie Reed—signed.pdf

Jesse Singal (March 7, 2023). Journalists Are Exhibiting Far Too Much Credulousness Toward Jamie Reed’s Critics. Singal-Minded

Jesse Singal (March 10, 2023). Gender-Clinic Whistleblower Jamie Reed Has Provided A Detailed Account Of Her Most Controversial Claim, Including The Names Of Those Involved. Singal-Minded

Reed, Jamie (December 31, 2023). Jamie Reed: The Courage to Admit You’re Wrong. The Free Press


Emily Yoffe (February 14, 2023). Jamie Reed Blows the Whistle on Pediatric Gender Care. The Free Press

Stella O’Malley and Sasha Ayad (May 5, 2023). EPISODE 112: A Conversation with Gender Clinic Whistleblower, Jamie Reed. Gender: A Wider Lens

Konstantin Kisin and Francis Foster (April 16, 2023). Trans Clinic Whistleblower Speaks Out. TRIGGERnometry

Konstantin Kisin and Francis Foster (June 14, 2023). The Dark Truth: What Happens At a Trans Clinic? TRIGGERnometry

Gender Dysphoria Alliance [Aaron Terrell and Aaron Kimberly] (March 19, 2023). EP60 – The sound a whistle makes – with Jamie Reed. Transparency

Gender Dysphoria Alliance [Aaron Terrell and Aaron Kimberly] (August 6, 2023). EP 71 – The Denton Report – with Jamie Reed. Transparency


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