Friday, April 27, 2007

Exodus International repudiates Paul Cameron, but I am not satisfied

This article has been removed due to the inaccuracies surrounding the research of Paul Cameron.

This statement from the web page of Exodus International was the result of intense work of the web page

The web masters of the site noticed that Exodus International was using Cameron's work, so they made it known.

Exodus International removed the information and the head of the group, Alan Chambers, also said:

I appreciate EGW’s tremendous research skills. I saw your post on Exodus using Paul Cameron’s research and was embarrassed. We do not support the work of Paul Cameron nor desire to use flawed research. A member of my staff will remove these articles today and post a retraction. In the coming months we will be doing a survey of the content on our site to determine what if there are other articles or links that need to be removed.

Forgive me for being cynical, but I am not sold.

I seem to recall that in 2005, the Traditional Values Coalition told the Boston Globe in the article Beliefs Drive Research Agenda of New Think Tanks that it removed Cameron's work from its web page.

However, its head, Lou Sheldon, continues to sell his book The Agenda, which freely cites Cameron by name.

I suggest that Alan Chambers and Exodus International lead a call for all religious right organizations that use Cameron's data to publicly apologize and remove his work from their sites:

I further suggest he start first with Peter LaBarbera and Americans for Truth (in name only).

Or how about the Rev. Rod Parsley who, in 2005, said the following:

“Gay sex is a veritable breeding ground for disease. Only one percent of the homosexual population in America will die of old age. The average life expectancy for a homosexual in the United States discounting AIDS is forty-two years of age . . . A lesbian can only expect to live to be forty-fi ve years of age.”—Perry schmoozes with gay bashers, Austin Chronicle, June 10, 2005

Or how about the American Family Association, which continues to cite Cameron's work on its web page and via its news service, Agape Press (now One News Now) consistently cited Cameron as a "family expert."

Or how about Timothy Dailey and the Family Research Council, who cited Cameron's work in several studies which remain on the group's web page.

Or how about Robert Knight who, when he was with the Concerned Women for America, cited Cameron's work in front of Congress and in columns that still appear on the CWA web page.

It was Knight who, in 2004, personally told me "Yes we have used his work. So what?"

In using Paul Cameron's work, Exodus International helped to create a monster; a cottage industry of groups and spokespersons who used his studies to stroke the egos and prejudices of people against the gay and lesbian community and hinder the passage of pro-gay laws.

Exodus International owes the gay and lesbian community big time. And if it is serious about its repudiation, then Exodus International should take more of a key role in killing the monster it helped to create.