January 11, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A campaign waged by homosexuals in Spain to suppress a book about reparative therapy for homosexuality has backfired, generating media coverage that has drawn new attention to the formerly ignored work.
As a result, the publisher says that it has been overwhelmed by requests for the book and is now in the process of printing 7,000 more copies.
“Understanding and Healing Homosexuality,” which has been available since 2004 in Spanish, became the object of protest in Spain in December when the book was republished by Libros Libres and the new edition appeared in the catalogs of such online booksellers as Amazon, La Casa del Libro (the House of Books), and El Corte Inglés (The English Cut).
The book, written by therapist Richard Cohen, discusses Cohen’s own liberation from homosexual attraction, what he regards as the principal causes of the problem, and methods for bringing about the healing of same-sex desires.
The appearance of the new edition sparked a protest on Twitter and other Internet media, including a petition that gathered tens of thousands of signatures demanding the removal of the book. Reporting on the campaign in the Spanish news media began on December 27th and has continued unabated.
Although the campaign has achieved the removal of the book from the offerings of La Corte Inglés, it also led newspapers, including the leftist El Pais, to do interviews with Cohen, in which he was given ample space to discuss his experience of liberation from homosexuality and the success of his therapeutic methods.
One liberal commentator, writing for Canarias 24 Horas, complains that “the campaign that has been undertaken on the net - at this moment on the Actuable website they have collected more than 47,000 signatures so that these online stores will withdraw it (the book) - seems to me to be not only to be foolish but sadly has given completely free publicity to a book that, based as it is on certain repugnant premises, had passed unnoticed by the majority for eight years.”
Asked about the controversy in the Spanish media, Cohen told El Pais that he believes that “gays and lesbians who are happy have the right to live their lives. I would hope that they would respect the right of others who want to explore an exit from homosexuality.”