Tuesday, October 30, 2012

'Ex-gay' group wants pro-gay information removed from CDC website

Editor's note - Let's continue to pray and do what we can for those caught in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.

An "ex-gay" group, Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX), has written a letter to President Obama demanding that the Centers for Disease Control stop linking to sites providing positive information about being gay, such as gay/straight alliances.

However, the organization doesn't necessarily say it like that. PFOX makes it seem as if these organizations are attacking organizations, like PFOX, and individuals who embrace the supposed "ex-gay" therapy:

On behalf of the Christian ministry Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX), the United States Justice Foundation submitted a letter [PDF] to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), calling for President Barack Obama's administration to put an end to its promotion of websites attacking Christian ministries that reach out to individuals departing from homosexual lifestyles.

The Christian group challenges the CDC's denigration of those who are not on board with the homosexual agenda, noting how the Obama administration backs organizations and publications with websites bashing biblical worldviews.

"The website also contains links to anti-heterosexual publications and organizations, such as PFLAG [Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays], which openly denigrates former homosexuals, and the infamous ex-gay publication Just the Facts, which advocates against Christian anti-gay ministries and lists only those religious organizations that affirm homosexual behavior," the U.S. Justice Foundation's letter reads before posing a critical question. "Why is the federal government spreading intolerance against the ex-gay community and Christians who support the religious testimony of former homosexuals?"

One of the links provided by the CDC -- titled "Empowering youth activists to fight homophobia and transphobia in schools" -- states that the GSA (Gay-Straight Alliance) Network helps GSA clubs become activist clubs that can "educate teachers and students to improve the school climate" (according to its own standards and regardless of parental objections). Such sites "warn" against counseling that helps students deal with their unwanted same-sex attractions

First of all, "ex-gay" therapy has been declared ineffective and dangerous by several medical organizations, including the American Psychological Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Psychiatric Association.

Secondly, it would seem that PFOX is desperate for attention, which is of course why this letter was written and publicized. Or to put it in the words of a comment left on the article about PFOX:
I checked the CDC site, as well as the sites of the links provided. I found information on those sites which references scientific studies which have proven the ineffectiveness of reparative therapy as well as the harm that can result from such therapy. I found no information on any of the sites to suggest that those who make the claim that they are no longer homosexual should be treated with derision or hatred. That seems to be complete hyperbole.
Hyperbole indeed. It's what organizations like PFOX do best.

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