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Chloe's Law Reminded Us: It's about Children, Not Gender Change

Jonathan Lange
March 14, 2024

Chloe’s Law, Senate File 99, has been passed by both Wyoming’s Senate (26-5) and House (55-6). Along the way, Chloe’s name was removed from the official title by committee amendment. It is now Senate Enrolled Act (SEA) 52 “Children gender change prohibition” and is awaiting Governor Gordon’s signature. 

Although Chloe’s name was erased from the title, her story and inspiration should not be forgotten. Three weeks ago, while the governor was hosting his annual prayer breakfast, Chloe Cole came under Wyoming’s capitol dome. She had travelled from California to give her testimony before the Senate’s Labor and Health Committee. That is where our paths crossed. 

The previous day, I had travelled from Evanston to attend the prayer breakfast. When making those plans, I had no idea that I would meet this remarkable person. But God has his own plans and moves in mysterious ways. 

Headlines about Chloe’s testimony called her an “activist.” That’s a curious way of labeling someone. It tends to erase a person’s identity and replace it with a mere slogan. Seeing Chloe in person, I could not help but think of her like any other young woman. What are her hobbies? Does she have a pet? What did she want to be before her life was so dramatically altered? What are her hopes and dreams going forward? 

As I listened to her ask the Wyoming legislature to enact the law that bore her name, I didn’t hear a professional activist. Instead, I heard a young adult describing the consequences of her abuse as a child. She did not come to Wyoming as an “anti-transgender” anything. She came to prevent the child-abuse that forever changed her life from happening to Wyoming kids. 

Had Chloe been born a decade or two earlier, the chances that a mental health professional would advise her parents to give her carcinogenic drugs intentionally in order to interfere with the normal development of her body--bones, brain and all--would be practically nil. If Chloe had been born in a place that gave children time to mature before making choices about things they could not possibly understand, she would likely still have her breasts. 

As a consequence of being born in the wrong time and place, her autism was not treated, at all. Instead, she testified that her “mom and dad were told that their only options were between having a dead daughter or a living, transgender son.” Looking back, she sees bitterly that these “medical professionals” were “taught to manipulate and coerce parents in this matter.” 

She emphasized: “My doctors followed the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (or the WPATH) Standards of Care.” Based in suburban Chicago, WPATH has published these Standards of Care since 1979. But their 6 th  edition (2001) cracked the door open to minors, and their 7 th  edition (2012) gave the green light for gender clinics to give life-altering drugs to children as young as nine. 

Prior to this the UK’s Royal College of Psychiatrists recommended that children experience “the post-pubertal state of their biological sex” before starting puberty blockers. This is the central issue of Chloe’s Law. Passionate and informed adults may debate whether or not gender change drugs and procedures are good or bad. But children simply lack the capacity to know. 

Recently it was revealed that child psychologists at WPATH privately admitted that it is “out of [children’s] developmental range to understand the extent to which some of these medical interventions are impacting them.” The trove of documents and videos released by investigative journalist Michael Shellenberger raises questions about what else WPATH has been hiding from the public. 

Meanwhile, numerous European countries are rethinking their blind trust in WPATH and the consequences for their children. On Tuesday, England’s National Health Service announced that it will halt the prescription of puberty blockers to children. Norway, Sweden, and Finland have also reversed course. 

Most notably the Dutch parliament voted last week to require its government to research the outcomes of children who have been given puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones. This is significant since Holland is the place where it all began. WPATH endorses the so-called “Dutch Protocol.” 

Miss Cole doesn’t care about politics. She cares about children like herself. She concluded her testimony to the Senate committee by saying, “This is not a left or right issue. This is a matter of right or wrong. Your constituents know that removing the healthy breasts of children and sterilizing them is completely wrong. You know that it is completely wrong. And you need to do something about it.” 

Many seasoned observers of the legislature gave Chloe’s Law little chance of making it to the governor’s desk. But as the WPATH credibility crumbled in real-time, SF 99 became unstoppable. Now, by the stroke of a pen, Governor Gordon can make it law.

Jonathan Lange is a ​Husband to one, father to nine, pastor of two churches, and co-leader of the Wyoming Pastors Network.