Tuesday, August 20, 2013

New Jersey Outlaws Conversion Therapy for Minors

New Jersey has followed California and outlawed conversion therapy, which attempts to turn gay teens straight, for minors. Incredibly Chris Christie, the Republican governor, signed it.

Of course the Religious Right is going absolutely bonkers. Pastor Larry Tomczak, writing in Charisma Magazine, wrote an open letter to Christie protesting his action. In the letter Tomczak made three major points which we've all heard before. My response is below.

1. People are not born homosexual

Saying that there is no scientific evidence that homosexuality is part of a person's biological constitution is just flat out not true. There is no definitive answer as to why someone is homosexual but the evidence points toward a combination of genetic, hormonal and perhaps environmental factors that appear to determine a person's sexual orientation as early as age five. Don't take my word for it, information on this is readily available at reputable sites on the internet.

2. Practicing Homosexuality is a sin

In YOUR opinion and don't give me any guff about God because the idea that the Bible is God's word is YOUR opinion as well. I've studied the Bible and the one thing I'm am absolutely certain about is that is was written by men, and fairly ignorant men at that.

3. The health risks of encouraging people to stay in a homosexual lifestyle far outweigh the risks of helping them to change.

Not according to the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association. The biggest health risk associated with homosexual activity appears to be the extremely high incidence of STDs including HIV and syphilis. But while that is a statistical fact, as reported by the CDC, why that is the case hasn't been fully investigated. Much, if not all, of the increased risk may be traceable to the fact that homosexuals are still a despised minority in this country (and people like YOU writing articles like this aren't helping any) so even your only valid argument has a huge caveat associated with it.

I live in New Jersey and I'm no fan of Chris Christie but in this particular case he is going with the prevailing medical opinion that conversion therapy is counter productive. If you have EVIDENCE to the contrary rather than opinion and YOUR interpretation of the iron age ramblings of a bunch of unwashed nomads, feel free to present it.

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