Conversion Therapy: Do You Have a Choice?

Conversion Therapy: Do You Have a Choice?

by Erin Weist

Last year, Feb. 2016, several American groups filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) against a therapy group claiming to treat unwanted same-sex attraction.  The complaint, brought by the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR), the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), and the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), suggested that this therapy group was making fraudulent claims that sexual orientation or gender identity are changeable.  (On a side note, I find this ironic because many liberal groups claim quite loudly that these things are, in fact, fluid and CAN change, even sometimes daily!)  In short, conversion therapy is hated and shunned in liberal communities because it advances the notion that people aren’t born perfect, that they have aspects of their character that need changing.  Sadly, this is not true.  Children can be sweet and adorable and naive but they are far from perfect.  They can be short-tempered, whiny, subject to mood swings, even mean.  Many of these are learned characteristics.  But the wonderful thing about mortality is that no one ever need lead a static life– change is always possible.  Let me be clear: I am not a health professional.  I know nothing about this therapy group and its methods and am by no means recommending this treatment to anyone.  But I do know that the principles behind this complaint are self-evident.  No one ever need live with something they consider unwanted– and no one ever need be bullied into believing they should neither try to change nor even WANT to change something undesirable about themselves.

It is interesting to note that this month (May 2017) the National Task Force for Therapy Equality (NTFTE) likewise filed a complaint, this time against the original groups– NCLR, HRC, and SPLC– for virtually the same reasons.  Namely, that these homosexual activist groups have consistently engaged in fraudulent, slanderous tactics, actively distorted research, and delivered fraudulent testimony under oath, among other complaints.  Many of the same testimonies and research have been used in arguments to the UN, which has affected these issues on a global scale.

To me, the largest part of the matter lies in the statements of two politicians who have taken part in the attempt to ban conversion therapy.  The first is from Ted Lieu, California lawmaker, who introduced a bill that would classify conversion therapy as fraudulent.  His statement: “a lot of folks were uncomfortable with, in their view, getting in the way of the parent-child relationship. And so we did have a lot of initial resistance.”  This should concern citizens of any land, when the parent-child relationship, particularly the role of a parent to care for and provide important direction for the child, is so casually thrown aside.  The second statement is from Gov. Christie of New Jersey who passed a law banning conversion therapy for minors.  Christie stated “he had reservations about the bill because he felt the government was limiting parental choice when it came to raising their children.”  But he signed it into law anyway.

This is more than a slippery slope, this is a blatant attack.  Groups, without valid research, making emotional claims in court that are essentially driving policy that not only determines the doctor/patient relationship but the parent/child relationship as well.  I would urge anyone who values the innate protections of the family to speak out against such explicit laws that would divide that inalienable right.  I have seen enough to be able to promise you this: it will not be the last breach against the family.  Unless we start speaking out and fighting back it will only get worse.

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