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California Therapist Association Pressured to Disbar Members Who Treat Unwanted Homosexuality

LifeSiteNews.com
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By Kathleen Gilbert

SAN DIEGO, California, May 3, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) - California's pro-family therapists are striving to persuade the state's largest therapist association to stand firm against demands to suppress or kick out members who seek to help clients with unwanted same-sex attraction.

LifeSiteNews.com (LSN) reported in March that the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT) has already submitted to demands from the gay-rights community to retract articles in the organization's magazine that supported traditional views on marriage and sexuality, apologize for and condemn them as "homophobic," and submit an amicus curiae brief opposing California's gay "marriage" ban. 

Stating that it had been neutral on political issues since its inception, CAMFT had even expressed consternation at the lobby's "bullying tactics," before acquiescing to the lobbyists. So complete has that acquiescence been that CAMFT's latest annual conference in April was reportedly largely dominated by workshops celebrating homosexuality.

The organization is now under pressure to ban outright the practice of reparative therapy for clients with unwanted same-sex attraction, and expel any therapists who practice such therapy. East Bay CAMFT has already issued a statement broadly declaring that reparative therapy presents no "enduring benefit" and only causes "harm," and is pressuring the state-wide organization to adopt a similar stance.

In a letter submitted to CAMFT's executive director and Board of Trustees last month, 40 pro-family therapists with Therapists Embracing Religious Freedom (TERF) expressed concern that their religious freedom has been endangered by the organization's recent moves. By submitting to the gay lobby's demands, said the group, "the CAMFT leadership has come dangerously close to marginalizing those therapists and clients who come from traditional faith communities."

Furthermore, the group pointed out that East Bay CAMFT's blanket condemnation of anti-reparative therapy was "highly biased and incomplete." "While focusing attention on the APA’s finding that some clients find SOCE therapies to be harmful, no mention is made of the fact that the APA also reported that some clients found these therapies to be helpful," they noted. On their Facebook page, TERF pointed to  www.mychoicemytherapy.com, a website recently published by clients of reparative therapy who testify to its effectiveness.

The therapists asked that CAMFT issue guidance to protect religious freedom when the values of clients and patients conflict, and to publish one article on the problem of religious discrimination and one on the benefit of reparative therapy, among other requests.

"If dialogue is no longer possible in The Therapist magazine, and dialogue is no longer possible on the CAMFT listserve," said the group, "we are frightened that honest and fair dialogue will be expunged from the organization as whole. 

"If people of faith are being censored and/or unfairly attacked when they speak up in public about these issues, we cringe to think what might be happening behind closed doors throughout this state."

One CAMFT intern and co-founder of TERF, said that the group presented CAMFT leadership with professional testimony of the effectiveness of reparative therapy, as well as letters from clients who had benefitted from such therapy, at the same time as their letter. The intern told LifeSiteNews.com (LSN) that the Board is "being pretty mysterious" in their response thus far.

The group confronted CAMFT on their decision to allow therapist Lisa Maurel, who called on practitioners of reparative therapy to be kicked out of the association, to speak at CAMFT's conference focusing on LGBT "diversity." Executive Director Mary Riemersma reportedly responded that, in the words of the TERF intern, "just because someone's a presenter, that doesn't mean that we at CAMFT agree with everything that they say." Riemersma did not respond to LSN's request for comment as of press time.

The intern said the leadership's response was hypocritical.

"It seems really inconsistent to say: we're inviting somebody to be a presenter at our annual conference, [and] what they say doesn't have to be factual or accurate, yet we kicked out eight articles from our magazine because they were not accurate and they were not factual," she said. "We're not buying that response."

TERF expects CAMFT to settle on a position regarding reparative therapy at their board meeting June 12. Meanwhile, pro-family therapists have been taking heat from homosexualist CAMFT members that learned about the TERF letter.

"The other side is pushing, they found out about our letter," said the intern. "At this point CAMFT is getting pressured from both sides, and it'll just be a matter of ... who's the most convincing, or who's the loudest."

Dr. Jerry Harris, a private practitioner of marriage and family therapy for 30 years, was the author of an article pulled from The Therapist that discussed the importance of reparative therapy for individuals with same-sex attraction.

"There are people who have feelings, same-sex feelings, whether they're male or female, and they don't like those," Harris told LifeSiteNews.com in a telephone interview. "Not everybody wants them, not everybody wants to be in the gay lifestyle ... and those people ought to have the option of having some therapy to help resolve those."

The practice of labeling practitioners of such therapy as "homophobic," he said, "doesn't help anything." "I don't believe I'm homophobic - but somebody who labels me as that, that kind of ends the discussion," he said, "because they don't want to get involved in how I feel, or how I believe, and why I feel or believe those, they just want to dismiss me."

Harris said he felt that the homosexualist lobbying was violating the integrity of the psychotherapy field. "It's way too political a thing that CAMFT is entering into," he said. "We don't have enough research on either side of the story."

But the level of intimidation used by the homosexualist lobby to push the agenda, Harris indicated, threatened to stifle all dialogue on the issue.

"I haven't heard of a bunch of faith-based counselors writing the gay people and telling them how terrible they are, but it's the other way around a fair amount," he said. "And people are getting pretty intimidated out there, that's why it's hard to get people on our side of the argument, if you will, to step forward, they're afraid of harassment, of being labeled, either homophobic or unfair or unqualified ... or them sending a test client in to see what you're going to say. There's all those kinds of fears out there."


See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

Gay 'Marriage' Activists Forcing Pro-Family Views out of California Therapist Association
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2010/mar/10031511.html

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Congressman: Give us Nucatola or we’ll subpoena

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By Ben Johnson

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 23, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) - Dr. Deborah Nucatola has become awfully shy since she became the first national Planned Parenthood figure featured in an exposé of its practice of harvesting, and allegedly profiting from the sale of, the organs of aborted children. Within hours of the video release by the Center for Medical Progress, she removed her social media accounts. 

Now, she is considering dodging a call to testify before a Congressional committee investigating whether she admitted to breaking the law during her covertly recorded cameo with actors posing as agents of a human biologics company.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee called her to address the committee by month's end. 

Roger K. Evans, Planned Parenthood's Senior Counsel for Law and Policy, responded by saying that asking her to speak to Congress "no later than July 31 ... is short notice given the number of questions raised." 

He instead offered to substitute Dr. Raegan McDonald-Mosley in Nucatola's place.

Faced with the possibility that Planned Parenthood would refuse to send its star witness, at least one congressman has said he will take steps to ensure the abortion provider shows up.

Rep. Joe Pitts, R-PA, responded to Evans' letter by saying that the committee has called Dr. Nucatola to the witness stand before the end of the month, and she will comply or face the consequences.  

“If they say no, we’ll subpoena her,” the pro-life Republican said. 

The committee is focused on whether the process Dr. Nucatola - the doctor seen in the first video, eating salad and sipping wine - amounts to a violation of federal felony law forbidding the sale of human organs for "valuable consideration." 

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Why selling ‘baby body parts’ has captured America’s attention (VIDEO)

By Pete Baklinski

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 23, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) - A key player in last week’s startling video exposé of Planned Parenthood says that it took 30 months of strategic planning from numerous pro-life organizations to give the story the hard-hitting power with which it has walloped the abortion industry over its practice of harvesting the body parts of aborted babies. 

“We are seeing the fruit of a lot of careful thought, a lot of disciplined activities, and a lot of undercover work,” Rev. Frank Pavone, executive director of Priests for Life, told LifeSiteNews in an interview in Washington. 

Since breaking Tuesday of last week, the story has trended first place in social media platforms such as Facebook and has been given top priority on mega news aggregation websites such as Drudge Report. The first of now two undercover videos has been viewed over 2.5 million times on YouTube. 

Pavone said that this is not the first time Planned Parenthood has faced the heat for what many considered to be a barbaric practice of harvesting human organs for profit. Similar investigations in the late 1990s into the practices of Planned Parenthood found that aborted babies were being dissected alive, harvested, and sold in pieces for research. 

“Now this is fresh evidence. Now this is evidence going to the highest levels of Planned Parenthood. We know that people at the national level of Planned Parenthood are aware of and are admitting that these baby body parts are being harvested, that transactions are taking place, that money is changing hands. And so, this is catching the attention of the American public because it brings the abortion issue down from the abstract level to the concrete,” he said. 

“This is not just about viewpoints, it’s about victims. It’s not just about beliefs, it’s about bloodshed. When people see and hear terms like ‘eyes, livers, hearts’ it’s like, ‘What are we talking about here? This is ghoulish disgusting activity,’” he said. 

Pavone praised pro-life activists such as Operation Rescue president Troy Newman and Life Dynamics president Mark Crutcher for helping the exposé along, giving “strategic input, guidance, and advice.” Pavone highlighted the hard work of lead investigator David Daleiden of the Center for Medical Progress for going undercover to film meetings with high profile Planned Parenthood employees and attending numerous Planned Parenthood conferences.

Pavone believes the story has received so much traction in social media outlets like Facebook because it gives people a platform to express outrage over the injustice of abortion in response to mainstream media’s unwritten rule of silence and apathy on abortion. 

Traditional media outlets are “in the pocket” of Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry, he said, adding that they “don’t want to say a bad word about Planned Parenthood.”

“Social media has become the engine for those who feel so frustrated that things we have known for years that the abortion industry is doing, and yet we can’t seem to get the word out, now these people are taking this and running with it. And I think you’re seeing years and even decades of frustration being channeled in productive ways to say, ‘We’ve got to shout this from the rooftops.’ And social media is the perfect rooftop,” he said. 

When asked what the undercover videos released so far reveal about the abortion industry and the people who work in it, Pavone responded: 

When an abortionist dehumanizes the baby that he or she is about to kill, the abortionist also dehumanizes himself. And this is what we are seeing in these people. We see it in Deborah Nucatola sipping the wine and eating the salad and talking about the body parts. We see it in the newest video [about] Dr. Mary Gatter. We saw it in [jailed abortionist] Gosnell.

What’s wrong with [these people]? There are two things wrong. Number one, these people are dehumanized. They are deeply damaged by the abortions they perform. Because when you perform your first abortion, a voice of protest rises up within you saying, ‘No. Stop. You can’t do this.’ But then if you ignore that voice, and go ahead and do that abortion, then the next time you have to explain to yourself, and to everybody else, why you ignored that voice. And so, the voice of protest gets buried under layer, and layer, and layer of excuses and rationalizations. And in doing that, you are becoming disconnected from your own conscience.

How can these people talk about this with apparent peace on their face? It’s because they are disconnected from themselves, from their own conscience.

Pavone said that new undercover videos to be released in the coming days will continue to shed light on the gruesome practices happening at Planned Parenthood abortion centers across the nation. 

“We want to defund Planned Parenthood and get them to stop what they are doing. This is a very concrete way of doing that. We want to end Planned Parenthood because they are the largest abortion business in the world, and we want that to stop,” he said. 

Already a Congressional investigation is underway, but so far, Planned Parenthood is refusing to cooperate with the demands of the Committee investigating. 

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The Planned Parenthood scandal shows the power of exposing abortion’s grotesqueness

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By Jonathon van Maren

July 23, 2015 (UnmaskingChoice) -- If there’s one thing that confuses me about how many pro-lifers decide on strategies to change hearts and minds on abortion, it’s the fact that they seem to believe that we have to approach the most controversial issue there is without controversy—that somehow, we have to take an issue that people have incredibly strong feelings about and ensure that none of those feelings surface during a discussion.

As our postcard campaign nears our record-breaking mark of one million postcards delivered to one million homes, reactions have been widely varied—we have phone calls from people “horrified” by the postcard, who don’t seem to realize that the action depicted is much more horrifying. We have people who demand to know what they are supposed to say if their children see the picture of “the dead baby”—who don’t seem to realize that with their own words, they have admitted that we live in a country where dead babies are tossed in garbage cans behind government-funded clinics. We also have people who call us to thank us for the information, and express anger that such barbarism could be happening in Canada. We have people who phone to tell us that the postcard has changed their vote, and the votes of their neighbors. And we have people like the old man who wanted to shake my hand because he was encouraged to see that “some people cared about things.”

Huge numbers of Canadians have no idea that abortion decapitates, dismembers, and disembowels a pre-born human being. Huge numbers of Canadians are being exposed to that tragic and horrifying fact.

By the polling numbers, we see many people influenced against abortion—even if they don’t like us, the image stays with them, and they like abortion even less. Even if only ten percent of people were influenced against abortion because of postcards depicting abortion imagery, I would point out that that is still a far bigger number than any other pro-life strategy even claims to impact. For the first time, statistically significant portions of the population are being exposed to the reality of abortion—and they are reacting to that reality.

Pro-lifers are often tempted to run scared because they believe what the pro-abortion movement says about our best evidence—that it will “turn people” off. It will, of course. In the words of one abortion activist: “Your pictures turn people off of abortion.” If people get angry with us, but are still influenced against abortion, we have accomplished exactly what we set out to do. That being said, people only focus on the angry commenters that they see—a handful of social media posts, and the same tired news story from each and every single media outlet. I’m not sure if most journalists are unimaginative or just lazy, but most seem unwilling or incapable of even visiting a few websites and trying to find out what the rationale behind the strategy is. Most of them, I suspect, have pre-written stories and just call around to get the quotes they want. We know, for example, that reporters have specifically ignored people who have received the postcard and offered to comment positively—that is not, they openly say, the story they are looking for.

The abortion movement, on the other hand, can’t decide whether the imagery we use is extremely effective, or very ineffective. Canadian abortion blogger “Fern Hill” is usually babbling the talking points about how what we’re doing is so counter-productive, and that we’re obsessed with “gore porn,” and then calling us a bunch of names. (If pro-abortion groups really did believe that what we were doing strengthened support for abortion so much, I suspect that they’d be a lot less angry about what we’re doing—after all, we’re just doing their job!) But a couple of days ago, after responding to pictures of the dozens of lovely young women on our staff by snapping that they were all one unplanned pregnancy away from being pro-choice (such a depressing world these people live in), she tweeted an article at me that I found interesting.

Click "like" if you are PRO-LIFE!

It was a piece on David Daleidan of the Center for Medical Progress, the man behind the recent exposes of Planned Parenthood. He’s captured video of Planned Parenthood employees casually discussing not only the abortion procedure, but also how to best pillage the corpses of these dead children in order to sell their body parts for profit. The videos have horrified people across North America, and reaction has been swift. Amanda Marcotte, a pro-abortion blogger who often writes for Slate, has responded to the new scandal in an article called “Grossing people out can have short-term impact, but does it matter in the long-term?” She quotes Michelle Goldberg over at The Nation:

Further, it’s a way for the anti-abortion movement to focus the abortion debate on the graphic details of rare, late-term procedures, about which there is less public consensus than there is about early abortion. It serves the same purpose as the ban on so-called “partial-birth abortion,” and as blown-up pictures of bloody fetuses. It induces disgust, a very politically potent emotion, since most people associate things that are gross with things that are immoral. In his book The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion, Jonathan Haidt describes how researchers asked students at Cornell University to fill out surveys about their political attitudes while standing either near or far from hand sanitizer. Those standing closer to it became temporarily more conservative. If something that minor can affect people’s politics, then a video like this one is sure to have a visceral impact.

Amanda Marcotte goes on to say that while abortion imagery and exposes are very potent, that the impact of them is not long-lasting. Why? Because, she writes with hilarious immaturity, most things in life are gross—sex, going to the bathroom, surgery—and we all get over those things, don’t we? So surely abortion pictures will also be forgotten.

She’s forgetting something—abortion pictures aren’t powerful because they’re “gross.” Abortion pictures are powerful because they show the results of abortion—a dead, butchered human being. The power in the imagery is that people recognize that, and something in them responds to this injustice. It’s why even the people angry with our postcards have responded to the media by talking about the postcards depicting the “dead babies” or the “slain babies” or the “torn-up babies.” No-one thinks that what they’re looking at is a removed appendix. No one thinks that what they’re looking at is bodily waste. Everyone knows, almost immediately, that what they’re looking at is a dead human.

That is why the impact of abortion pictures doesn’t just disappear. One more piece of evidence? Almost everyone I know in the pro-life movement was convicted to join the pro-life fight because they saw a picture or a video of abortion, including myself. As Marcotte herself pointed out, that was what convicted David Daleidan as well. We now have over forty young people on our staff, all convicted by seeing what abortion does to babies and what they can do about it.

The movement is just getting started.

Reprinted with permission from the Canadian Centre for Bioethical Reform.

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