I can speak from experience on this one!
This was depressing, I had no idea all of this happened. But take heart, I've always observed you to be one of the most ethical and science/evidence based journalists I've seen. I've long admired your work, enough to pay for this subscription, which is rare for me. You clearly just want the truth. You don't have an anti-trans ax to grind, and the fact that they see the slightest bit of nuance in your reporting as an attack is rather disheartening. I, for one, don't put any stock in these rumors and hope that more people who appreciate your work can speak up.
Thanks for this. It looks like the “Big Lie” and “No Smoke Without Fire” theories are all too alive and well! And yes, your perfectly reasonable and in fact necessary questioning of modern gender dogma does seem to be the main motive. The fact that they cannot dismiss you as a right-wing conservative seems to make them even angrier. Hang in there and keep up your good work!
I hope you see my comment although I'm reading your post several years late. First, I am sorry this happened to you. It sounds like a horrible ordeal. I am not on social media because of stuff like this, however I understand that as a journalist it's crucial to your career to be visible and active online. Next, I literally just listened to your article for the Atlantic about transgender issues today on AUDM. I've been going through the AUDM archives and listening to the oldest available articles first. I didn't recall the publication date of your article, so when I started listening to it I was immediately struck by the realization that it must be several years old. It seemed like a time capsule in this way, from an era in which complex and controversial topics were still being reported on in mainstream outlets in nuanced ways that challenge assumptions and knee-jerk reactions. I have difficulty imaging an American media outlet today publishing an article that might be construed to even hint at rejecting some of the current orthodoxy on appropriate responses to gender dysphoria among children and teens, including the Atlantic. Now, hearing that you were also ruthlessly harassed by people who did not like what they believed your article implied just breaks my heart and outrages me. This is why journalists don't dare cover certain important topics today! This is why our public debate is so ill-informed, garbled, and hostile! Your article was essentially trans-affirming, while also carving out space for evidence that supports therapeutic and parental interventions to help kids navigate gender dysphoria in a more methodical, and potentially (but not automatically) cautious way. I just checked and now know that you wrote that article roughly four years ago. So much has changed in the political and media environment in this short span of time. I hardly recognize the outlets I used to rely upon for daily news and long-form investigative reporting like the Times and New Yorker. The Atlantic has retained some of their independence, but I feel like it's just a matter of time before they succumb to the same pressures. Thanks for using this medium to reach those of us who crave independent journalism and critical thought on crucial issues. I will be thinking of some non-culture war issues for you to address in another post, since you asked. I'm a tenured political science professor, btw. I teach a class on Title IX Policy. I included a brief unit on "bathroom bills" a few years ago with no controversy. Today, I omit the topic entirely, and focus exclusively on the "less controversial" issues surrounding campus sexual assault and Title IX investigations. It's becoming difficult to do my job in this environment. I could not handle a public, coordinated harassment campaign like the sort you endured. Thanks for keeping up the good fight, you are not alone!