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The Psychological Profession and Homosexuality: Lunatics Running the Asylum?

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Special Report Commentary by Matthew Cullinan Hoffman

WASHINGTON, August 14, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A man goes to a psychologist with a problem.  "Doctor," he says, "I'm suffering terribly. I feel like a woman trapped inside the body of a man.  I want to become a woman." 

The psychologist responds: "No problem. We can discuss this idea for a couple of years, and if you're still sure you want to be a woman, we can have a surgeon remove your penis, give you hormones for breast enlargement and make other changes to your body.  Problem solved."

Gratified, the first patient leaves, followed by a second. "Doctor," he says, "I feel terrible. I'm a man but I feel attracted to other men.  I want to change my sexual preference.  I want to become heterosexual."  The psychologist responds: "Oh no, absolutely not!  That would be unethical.  Sexual orientation is an immutable characteristic!"

The irony of this little tale is that, while reading like a joke, it is in reality an accurate description of the mental health professions today.  While dismissing and condemning reparative therapy for homosexual orientation, the majority of psychiatrists and psychologists in Anglophone North America have embraced the concept of "sex change," a procedure that does nothing more than mutilate the patient to appease his confused mind.

The American Psychological Association Perpetuates the Madness

In its most recent statement on the topic, the American Psychological Association (APA) has softened its tone somewhat against psychologists who do reorientation therapy for homosexuals. However it maintains that, "Contrary to claims of sexual orientation change advocates and practitioners, there is insufficient evidence to support the use of psychological interventions to change sexual orientation". 

The refusal of the organization to accept the increasingly strong evidence against its position is another reminder of how entrenched the sophistry of sexual hedonism has become among the leaders of the organization.

In recent years, a number of studies have been published in peer-reviewed psychology journals, indicating that significant numbers of patients who voluntarily participate in therapy to change their sexual orientation are successful and happy with the results. Combined with numerous individual testimonies by former homosexuals, evidence in favor of the practice is overwhelming.

However, in its new report, "Appropriate Therapeutic Responses to Sexual Orientation," the APA's leadership declares that all of those studies can be dismissed because, in its words, "None of the recent research (1999-2007) meets methodological standards that permit conclusions regarding efficacy or safety."

The report therefore conveniently disposes of the most recent studies on the topic—the ones that undermine the APA's position.  The only studies that remain are ones done before the resurgence of the reparative therapy movement, in the 1970s, when the APA declared that homosexual orientation and sodomy really weren't unhealthy after all.  New research is rejected in favor of research that is now over 30 years old, applied to therapeutic practices that may no longer be in use.

However, the authors of Essential Psychotherapy and its Treatment, a standard text in medical schools, disagree with the APA's leadership, and say that the newer studies vindicate sexual reorientation therapy. 

The newest edition (2009) notes on page 488 that, "While many mental health care providers and professional associations have expressed considerable skepticism that sexual orientation could be changed with psychotherapy and also assumed that therapeutic attempts at reorientation would produce harm, recent empirical evidence demonstrates that homosexual orientation can indeed be therapeutically changed in motivated clients, and that reorientation therapies do not produce emotional harm when attempted (e.g., Byrd & Nicolosi, 2002; Byrd et al., 2008; Shaeffer et al., 1999; Spitzer, 2003)."

The APA's latest report, done by a task force composed of psychologists with long records of homosexualist activism, also claims as "scientific facts" that "same-sex sexual attractions, behavior, and orientations per se are normal and positive variants of human sexuality-in other words, they are not indicators of mental or developmental disorders" and "no empirical studies or peer-reviewed research supports theories attributing same-sex sexual orientation to family dysfunction or trauma."

These unbelievable statements fly in the face of more than a century of scientific, peer-reviewed studies and clinical observation that indicate that much homosexual behavior originates in deficient family relationships and is associated with a wide range of diseases and pathological behaviors. 

Studies have shown that homosexuals disproportionately come from families in which sons or daughters lack a healthy relationship with one or both of their parents, or in situations in which the homosexual was the victim of child sex abuse by a same-sex adult. 

Homosexual behavior is also statistically associated with a host of diseases, disorders, and pathological behaviors, including venereal and other diseases, promiscuity and unstable relationships,anxiety disorders,depression and suicide,alcoholism and drug abuse, domestic violencepederasty, and early death.

Even the homosexual Gay and Lesbian Medical Association admits that homosexuals suffer disproportionate rates of disease and self-destructive behavior.

Although the homosexualist leadership at the APA tries to rationalize these relationships by claiming that they are caused by social stigma or other factors, their claims ring hollow.  Many stigmitized groups exist in society that display none of the pathological tendencies of homosexuals, and these tendencies appear even in countries that are very tolerant of homosexual behavior, such as the Netherlands.

Homosexualism on the Defensive

The very existence of the report, however, is evidence that the homosexualist establishment currently in power at the APA is on the defensive, and seeking to preserve its ideology of sexual permissiveness as a paradigm in the psychology profession.

After surrendering itself to a hedonistic ethos in the 1970s and 80s, the American psychological practice has been transformed into a vehicle for patients to rationalize and reconcile themselves with self-destructive, irrational, and narcissistic behavior, paying an "expert" to soothe their consciences by assuring them that "science" is on their side. 

However, an increasing number of mental health professionals whose institutions were stolen from them by political activists in the 1970s are now rising up to take back their profession in the name of true science, and patient health.

Former APA President Dr. Robert Perloff has publicly endorsed the National Organization for the Research and Treatment of Homosexuality (NARTH), the largest American organization devoted the treatment of unwanted homosexual attractions, and has denounced the APA's campaign against such treatment.

"The ideology of those who oppose efforts to try to facilitate transfers from SSA, that is, Same Sex Attraction, to heterosexual attraction, must not, must not stand in the way of those homosexual persons who desire to live their lives heterosexually, a choice which is unarguably theirs to make," he said in a videotaped statement  played at NARTH's 2008 annual meeting.

Dr. Robert Spitzer, who has been been called the "architect" of the American Psychiatric Association's normalization of homosexuality in the 1970s, provoked outrage from the homosexualist establishment when he admitted in 2001 that his own investigations had convinced him that sexual reorientation therapy can work.

His study, published in the peer-reviewed Archives of Mental Health in 2003, found that a majority of his sample of 247 people had developed heterosexual urges or had ceased to be predominantly homosexual after only one year of therapy.  None of the subjects said that they had been harmed in the process.

After presenting his paper before the American Psychiatric Association in 2001, Spitzer said: "I'm convinced from people I have interviewed…many of them…have made substantial changes toward becoming heterosexual. I came to this study skeptical. I now claim that these changes can be sustained."

Other prominent figures in psychiatry and psychology have also raised their voices in protest, including Dr. Jeffrey Satinover, a psychiatrist and physicist who has testified before Congress in favor of reparative therapy, and has denounced the hijacking of the mental health professions by homosexualist ideologues in his book, the "Trojan Couch".

"Some of my psychiatric and psychological colleagues have woven for themselves their own set of illusory robes of authority, and for the past 35 years have been proclaiming doctrines in the public square that depend upon the authority that derives from the public's belief that these robes exist," Satinover said in a recent interview .

"The diagnostic change that in 1973 removed homosexuality as a formal disorder from the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), a change that many now accept as simply indisputable in spite of the fact that it was based wholly on fiction," he added.

"The question isn't just homosexuality, said Satinover, "but rather, freedom from all sexual constraint. This has been an issue for civilization for thousands of years…We now have so little of a moral compass that we're really completely at sea. We're awash in the tide of unconstrained instinctive behaviors which are all being labeled 'okay' because nobody really has a sense, any more, as to what's right and what's wrong."

Whither Psychology?

The debate over reparative therapy for homosexuality runs deeper than the issue itself.  It is arguably a debate over the future of the psychological professions as a whole.

Although there are signs that an increasing number of mental health experts are taking an honest look at the facts regarding homosexual behavior and sexual orientation therapy, there are other signs that portend an even darker future for the profession.

In 1998, the APA released a study by three psychological researchers from Temple University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Michigan, claiming that the "negative potential" of adult sex with children was "overstated" and that "the vast majority of both men and women reported no negative sexual effects from their child sexual abuse experiences."  It even claimed that large numbers of the victims reported that their experiences were "positive," and suggested that the phrase "child sex abuse" be replaced with "adult-child sex."

The APA not only passed the paper through its peer review process where it was approved by multiple psychologists associated with the organization, but actually published it in one of its journals, Psychological Bulletin.  Moreover, when objections were raised by radio talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger and various pro-family groups, the organization defended the article for an entire year.  It was also defended by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which chillingly stated that it "saw no clear evidence of improper application of methodology or other questionable practices on the part of the article's authors."

Although the sheer insanity and destructiveness of the content should have prevented the APA from publishing the article in the first place, the sexual libertines in charge of the organization only issued a muted retraction after the U.S. Congress joined the fray, passing an unprecedented resolution condemning the study.

The publication of the paper was only one example of such lunacy by mental health professionals in peer-reviewed journals.  One of the three authors of the study, Robert Bauserman, has a history of publishing pedophilia-advocacy "studies," including one for the now-defunct journal Paidika, The Journal of Paedophilia, whose editors admitted to being pedophiles. 

Since the 1998 article, Bauserman and fellow author Bruce Rind have gone on to write more articles defending child sex abuse, which have appeared in such mainstream journals as the Archives of Sexual Behavior (2001) and Clinical Psychology (2003).  Apparently, the psychology profession is comfortable with Bauserman and Rind's work, and intends to continue publishing it.

Another apologist for child sex abuse who has received acceptance, affirmation, and recognition from the mental health professions is Dr. Theo Sandfort , who is currently an Associate Professor of Clinical Sociomedical Sciences (in Psychiatry) at Colombia University.  Sandfort published a study in 1981 that claimed that boys as young as 10 years old had "positive" experiences in their "sexual relationships" with adults.

While he was co-director of the research program of the Department of Gay and Lesbian Studies at the University of Utrecht, Netherlands, Sandfort interviewed 25 boys from between the ages of 10 and 16 who were in such "sexual relationships"—that is, they were being sexually abused by adults.  In fact, the abusers themselves took Sandfort to their victims so he could interview them.  When the victims gave Sandfort their "positive" responses, he duly recorded them.

"For virtually all the boys ... the sexual contact itself was experienced positively," Sandfort wrote, without a hint of irony.

The fact that Sandfort was promoting the sexual abuse of minors with the help of their victimizers didn't seem to faze him.  Nor did it faze his then-employers at the University of Utrecht.  Nor did it faze the prestigious University of Colombia, which later gave him a professorship, even after he went on to write articles such as "Pedophile relationships in the Netherlands: Alternative Lifestyles for Children?" and books such as "Childhood Sexuality: Normal Sexual Behavior and Development" (2000).

It hasn't fazed the APA either, which has named Sandfort a "fellow" of the organization since 2002.

The defense and even the promotion of mental health experts who defend child sex abuse is a terrifying, but expectable movement down the slippery slope of sexual hedonism embraced by the powers that be at the APA.  It not only threatens homosexuals, who are deceived by the seductive argument that their orientation is nothing to worry about, but psychology and psychiatry themselves.

The outcome of the current battle over the science of homosexuality may well determine the future of the mental health professions as a whole. Will they turn back from the brink, or plunge into the abyss? And what will become of the societies that heed their counsel?

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Vatican’s doctrine chief: ‘Absolutely anti-Catholic’ to let bishops conferences decide doctrine or discipline

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By John-Henry Westen

VATICAN, March 26, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has rejected outright the idea floated by Germany’s Cardinal Reinhard Marx that various bishops’ conferences around the world would decide for themselves on points of discipline or doctrine. 

“This is an absolutely anti-Catholic idea that does not respect the catholicity of the Church,” Cardinal Müller told France’s Famille Chrétienne in an interview published today

The question was raised because Cardinal Marx, the head of the German Catholic bishops’ conference and a member of Pope Francis’ advisory Council of Nine, told reporters that the German bishops would chart their own course on the question of allowing Communion for those in “irregular” sexual unions.

“We are not a subsidiary of Rome,” he said in February. “The Synod cannot prescribe in detail what we should do in Germany.”

Vatican Cardinal Müller remarked that while episcopal conferences may have authority over certain issues they are not a parallel magisterium apart from the pope or outside communion with the bishops united to him.

Asked specifically about Cardinal Marx saying that the Church in Germany is “not a subsidiary of Rome,” the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said pointedly “the president of an Episcopal Conference is nothing more than a technical moderator, and as such has no special teaching authority.”  He added moreover, that the dioceses in a particular country “are not subsidiaries of the secretariat of an Episcopal conference or diocese whose Bishop presides over the Episcopal Conference.”

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The CDF head warned that “this attitude makes the risk of waking some polarization between the local churches and the universal Church.” He did not however believe that there was the will for Episcopal conferences to separate from Rome.

The important interview also saw Cardinal Müller contest the notion that the pastoral practice or discipline could change while retaining the same doctrine. “We can not affirm the doctrine and initiate a practice that is contrary to the doctrine,” he said.

He added that not even the papal Magisterium is free to change doctrine. “Every word of God is entrusted to the Church, but it is not superior to the Word,” he said. “The Magisterium is not superior to the word of God. The reverse is true.”

Cardinal Müller rejected the notion that we would have to modify Christ’s unflinching words totally forbidding divorce and remarriage.  We cannot “say that our ministry should be more cautious than Jesus Christ Himself!”  Nor could we, he added, say that Christ’s teaching is out of date or that “we need to correct or refine Jesus Christ because He lived in an idealistic world.” 

Rather, the cardinal said, bishops must be ready for martyrdom.  Quoting Jesus he said, “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and if we speak all kinds of evil against you because of me.”

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‘Groundbreaking’: Kansas may become first state to ban dismemberment abortions

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By Ben Johnson

TOPEKA, KS, March 26, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Kansas will become the first state in the country to ban a procedure in which unborn children are dismembered in the womb, if Gov. Sam Brownback signs a bill that recently passed the state legislature.

The state House passed a ban on dilation and evacuation (D&E) abortions, called dismemberment abortions in common parlance, by 98-26 on Wednesday.

The Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act, which had already passed the state Senate in February 31-9, now heads to Gov. Brownback's desk.

Brownback, a staunch defender of life, is expected to sign the act into law.

"Because of the Kansas legislature's strong pro-life convictions, unborn children in the state will be protected from brutal dismemberment abortions," said Carol Tobias, president of the National Right to Life Committee, which has made banning dismemberment abortions a national legislative focus.

The procedure, in which an abortionist separates the unborn child's limbs from his body one at a time, accounts for 600 abortions statewide every year.

Nationally, it is “the most prevalent method of second-trimester pregnancy termination in the USA, accounting for 96 percent of all second trimester abortions,” according to the National Abortion Federation Abortion Training Textbook.

“It’s just unconscionable that something happens to children that we wouldn’t tolerate being done to pets,” Katie Ostrowski, the legislative director of Kansans for Life, told The Wichita Eagle.

Leading pro-life advocacy groups have made shifting the debate to dismemberment a national priority, with similar legislation being considered in Missouri and Oklahoma. Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D., who is NRLC's director of state legislation, called the bill's passage in Topeka “groundbreaking.”

"When the national debate focuses only on the mother, it is forgetting someone," she said.

The abortion lobby has made clear that it is uncomfortable engaging in a public relations tussle on this ground.

Elizabeth Nash, the senior state issues associate of the Guttmacher Institute, said that dismemberment is “not medical language, so it’s a little bit difficult to figure out what the language would do.”

On the state Senate floor, Democrats tried to alter the bill's language on the floor by replacing the term “unborn child” with fetus. “I know some of you don’t believe in science. But it’s not an unborn child, it’s called a fetus,” said state Senator David Haley, D-Kansas City.

If the bill becomes law, the abortion industry has vowed to fight on.

Julie Burkhart, a former associate of late-term abortionist George Tiller, said the motion's only intention is “to intimidate, threaten and criminalize doctors.”

“Policymakers should be ashamed,” she said, adding, “if passed, we will challenge it in court.”

Gov. Brownback has previously signed conscience rights protections and sweeping pro-life protections into law.

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How NOT to move beyond the abortion wars

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By Anne Hendershott

March 26, 2015 (CrisisMagazine.com) -- A few years ago, when an undergraduate student research assistant of mine—a recent convert to Catholicism—told me that he was planning to meet with a well-known dissenting Catholic theology professor who was then ensconced in an endowed chair at a major metropolitan Catholic university, I told him: “Be careful, you might end up liking him too much.” I jokingly told my student not to make eye contact with the theologian because he might begin to find himself agreeing with him that Catholic teachings “really allow” for women’s ordination and full reproductive rights—including access to abortion.

I was reminded of that conversation this week when I began reading a new book by yet another engaging Catholic theology professor at a major metropolitan university who also claims (pg 6) that the argument he puts forward in his book, Beyond the Abortion Wars, is “consistent with defined Catholic doctrine.” Written by Charles Camosy, associate professor of theology at Fordham University, the new book purports to be in line with Catholic teachings and promises “a way forward for a new generation.” But, Camosy delivers yet another argument for a woman’s right to choose abortion when confronted with an unborn child that he has described—in the past—as an “innocent aggressor.”

Indeed, Camosy has spent much of his career trying to convince us that he knows Catholic teachings better than the bishops. Criticizing Bishop Olmsted for his intervention and excommunication of a hospital administrator for her role in the direct abortion at a Phoenix Catholic hospital, Camosy suggested in 2013 that “the infamous Phoenix abortion case set us back in this regard.” Implying that Bishop Olmsted was not smart enough to understand the moral theology involved in the case, Camosy claimed that “The moral theology in the case was complex—which makes the decision to declare publicly that Sr. McBride had excommunicated herself even more inexplicable. The Church can do better.” For Camosy, “Catholics must be ready to help shape our new discussion on abortion. And we must do so in a way that draws people into the conversation—not only with respectful listening, but speaking in a way that is both coherent and sensitive.”

This new book is likely Camosy’s attempt to “draw people into the conversation.” But, there is little in his book that is either coherent or sensitive. Claiming to want to move “beyond” the abortion wars, Camosy creates an argument that seems designed to offend the pro-life side, while giving great respect to those who want to make sure abortion remains legal.

Especially offensive for pro-life readers will be Camosy’s description of the abortifacient, RU-486 as a form of “indirect abortion.” The reality is that RU-486, commonly known as the “abortion pill,” effectively ends an early pregnancy (up to 8 weeks) by turning off the pregnancy hormone (progesterone). Progesterone is necessary to maintain the pregnancy and when it is made inoperative, the fetus is aborted. For Camosy, who claims that his book is “consistent with settled Catholic doctrine,” this is not a “direct” abortion. To illustrate this, Camosy enlists philosopher Judith Jarvis Thompson’s 1971 “Defense of Abortion”—the hypothetical story of the young woman who is kidnapped and wakes up in a hospital bed to find that her healthy circulatory system has been hooked up to a famous unconscious violinist who has a fatal kidney ailment. The woman’s body is being used to keep the violinist alive until a “cure” for the violinist can be found. Camosy makes the case—as hundreds of thousands of pro-choice proponents have made in the past four decades—that one cannot be guilty of directly killing the violinist if one simply disconnects oneself from him. Likewise, for Camosy, simply taking the drug RU 486 is not “directly” killing the fetus. He writes:

The drugs present in RU 486 do not by their very nature appear to attack the fetus. Instead, the drug cuts off the pregnancy hormone and the fetus is detached from the woman’s body…. Using RU 486 is like removing yourself from [Judith Jarvis Thompson’s] violinist once you are attached. You don’t aim at his death, but instead remove yourself because you don’t think you have the duty to support his life with your body…. Some abortions are indirect and better understood as refusals to aid (pp 82-83).

Perhaps there are some readers who will find Camosy’s argument convincing, but I am not sure that many faithful Catholic readers will agree that it is consistent with settled Catholic doctrine.

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As one who is hardly a bystander in the abortion wars, I wanted to like this book. As an incrementalist who celebrates every small step in creating policy to protect the unborn, I had high hopes that this book would at last begin to bridge the divide. A decade ago, in my own book, The Politics of Abortion, I joined the argument begun by writers like Marvin Olasky in his Abortion Rites: A Social History of Abortion in America, that it is more effective to attempt to change the hearts and minds of people than to create divisive public policy at the federal level. I share Charles Camosy’s desire to end the abortion wars—but this war cannot end until the real war on the unborn ends. This does not mean that the two sides cannot work together—battling it out at the state level—where there is the opportunity for the greatest success. But, complex philosophical arguments on whether RU 486 is a direct or indirect form of abortion are not helpful to these conversations.

Camosy must know that we can never really “end” the abortion wars as long as unborn children are still viewed as “aggressors” or “invaders” and can still be legally aborted. Faithful Catholics know that there is no middle ground on this—the pro-life side has to prevail in any war on the unborn. It can be done incrementally but ground has to be gained—not ceded—for the pro-life side. Besides, Camosy seems a bit late to the battlefield to begin with. In many ways, he seems to have missed the fact that the pro-life side is already winning many of the battles through waiting periods, ultrasound and parental notification requirements, and restrictions on late term abortion at the state level. More than 300 policies to protect the unborn have been passed at the state level just in the past few years. The number of abortions each year has fallen to pre-Roe era levels—the lowest in more than four decade.   Much of these gains are due to the selfless efforts of the pro-life community and their religious leaders. Yet, just as victory appears possible in many more states, Camosy seems to want to surrender by resurrecting the tired rhetoric—and the unconscious violinists—of forty years ago.

While it is disappointing, it is not unexpected considering Camosy’s last book lauded the contributions of Princeton’s most notorious professor, Peter Singer—the proponent of abortion, euthanasia and infanticide. Claiming that Singer is “motivated by an admirable desire to respond to the suffering of human and non-human animals,” Camosy’s 2012 book, Peter Singer and Christian Ethics: Beyond Polarization, argues that, “Though Singer is pro-choice for infanticide, on all the numerous and complicated issues related to abortion but one, Singer sounds an awful lot like Pope John Paul II.”  In a post at New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good, a progressive organization led by Rev. Richard Cizik (a former lobbyist for the National Association of Evangelicals who was removed from his position because of his public support for same sex unions, and his softening stance on abortion) Camosy wrote that he found Singer to be “friendly and compassionate.”  Camosy currently serves on the Advisory Board of Cizik’s New Evangelical Partnership—where he has posted Peter Singer-like articles including: “Why Christians Should Support Rationing Health Care.”

One cannot know the motivations of another—we can never know what is in another’s heart so it is difficult to know why Charles Camosy wrote this book. It must be difficult to be a pro-life professor at Fordham University—a school known for dissenting theologians like Elizabeth Johnson. But, if one truly wants to advance a culture of life in which all children are welcomed into the world, it would seem that inviting Peter Singer to be an honored speaker to students at Fordham in 2012 is not the way to do it, nor would claiming that RU-486 “may not aim at death by intention.” Perhaps it is unwise to continue to critically review Camosy’s work from a Catholic perspective because it gives such statements credibility—and notoriety. But, as long as Camosy continues to claim that his writings and policy suggestions—including his newly proposed “Mother and Prenatal Child Protection Act”—are “consistent with defined Catholic doctrine,” faithful Catholics will have to continue to denounce them.

Reprinted with permission from Crisis Magazine. 

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