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Powerful forces seek to end counseling for reluctant gays

At issue is medical choice. Do adults have the right to seek treatment for sexual desires and behavior they find objectionable for whatever reason?
Thu Jun 11, 2015 - 12:24 pm EST
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NEW YORK, June 11, 2015 (C-Fam) -- The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights issued a report last week on LGBT issues. In that document he called for an end to “conversion therapy.”

President Obama also made a call for the end to “conversion therapy” last week.

Various American states have made “conversion therapy” illegal for minors. The Southern Poverty Law Center, along with gay activist Wayne Besen, is campaigning for “conversion therapy” to be made illegal coast to coast.

Opponents of therapy for those with unwanted same-sex desire and behavior use the term “conversion therapy” as an epithet. They also use the phrase “pray away the gay.”

At issue is medical choice. Do adults have the right to seek treatment for sexual desires and behavior they find objectionable for whatever reason? Also at issue is whether parents have the right to seek the same kind of treatment for their minor children.

Advocates for homosexuality believe that it is inborn and a normal part of human sexuality and that it does not need to be treated.

This month the New Jersey Superior Court is hearing a case that tests these propositions. Four young men, orthodox Jews, were uncomfortable with being attracted to other men and in some cases acting out on those desires. None of the young men identified as gay at the time and each of them felt same-sex desires and actions were not in keeping with their deeply held religious beliefs. Each of them sought out the services of a “Torah-based” counseling referral service called JONAH founded by Arthur Goldberg and Elaine Berk.

The young men are now claiming that JONAH lied to them that unwanted same-sex attraction can be successfully treated. With the help of the $340 million Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) they are suing JONAH under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act. If JONAH loses, the counselors will be on the hook to SPLC for upwards of $4 million in attorneys’ fees as well as for any additional fines Judge Bariso finds appropriate. What’s more, such a ruling could have the effect of shutting down similar therapy all over New Jersey.

The suit is part of a national – even a global – campaign, to shut down all counseling for those with unwanted same-sex attraction. It might seem odd that “progressives” are attempting to step between someone seeking help and their doctor. One of the arguments on the abortion question is that no one should step between a woman and her doctor, and now they are seeking to step between anyone and everyone with unwanted same-sex desire and the doctors they seek help from.

Elaine Berk showed the Friday Fax a death threat they received by email while in court on Tuesday.

It said, “God wants all at Jonah to know that God loves homosexuals and that God supports equality, especially in marriage, and God supports protection for LGBT against discrimination, especially discrimination by ‘Christian’ fundamentalists and extremists. God is very angry at Jonah, because Jonah refuses to obey God’s will. God has decided that the people running Jonah do not deserve to live on planet earth any longer. Jonah has betrayed God. Therefore God will send all at Jonah to Hell soon.”

Reprinted with permission from C-Fam


  homosexuality, sexual orientation change efforts, united nations

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