California’s Proposed Gay Reparative Therapy Law Irks Conservatives

Dan Savage’s It Gets Better project

Conservative news outlets are slamming a proposed California law that would make it an illegal fraud to advertise and sell anti-gay conversion counseling services, claiming such a ban is part of a “homosexual lobby” plot to keep people from overcoming same sex orientation “pathology,” or disease.

For decades, uneducated parents forced their minor kids suspected of gay inclinations into discredited and abusive “therapy” sessions that often led to suicide.

But in a June 16 column for Breitbart News, Thomas D. Williams declared that Assembly Bill 2943 discriminates against gay people who want to become heterosexual.

“The LGBT lobby abhors having the homosexual inclination treated as a pathology and wants to prevent anyone from doing so, by coercion if necessary,” Williams, Breitbart’s Rome bureau chief, opined. “The suggestion that people with same-sex attraction can be helped by therapy to modify their sexual orientation is anathema to the LGBT movement.”

According to Williams, nearly 47 percent of gay people who undergo conversion treatment become heterosexual, a claim supported by no legitimate scientific evidence.

But Williams quoted Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, who supposedly runs the world’s largest reparative therapy clinic saying that “30 years of science has shown us that sexuality is fluid and can change for many people.”

To support his position, he noted the stance of Jim Domen, a Christian pastor who says he once liked to roam gay bars for sex. Domen insists God told him to become straight after allowing him to find a $5 bill in a gym parking lot when he was broke. He told that tale on Rev. Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network, which claims God sent 2012’s Hurricane Sandy to kill 233 Americans and cause $69 billion in damage because the nation tolerates gay citizens.

Nothing in the proposed law prevents citizens from seeking anti-gay advice from religious leaders, friends or family, though libertarians surely won’t like the idea of the government imposing additional restrictions on the marketing of services.

The legislative proposal states in part, “Contemporary science recognizes that being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered is part of the natural spectrum of human identity and is not a disease, disorder or illness.”

A California State Senate committee scheduled a June 25 hearing on the bill.

In response to campaigns by folks like Williams, Robertson, Domen and Nicolosi, journalist Dan Savage created the “It Gets Better Project” to give hope to abused gay kids considering suicide.

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