Monday, December 03, 2012

A new low for the anti-gay right - 'Jerry Sandusky bill?'

Matt Barber
On his Americans for Truth webpage, Peter LaBarbera features a column by the Liberty Counsel's Matt Barber which can probably be considered a scientific breakthrough in that it proves that things lower than snakes can put together a column.

It was originally featured on World Net Daily, but since I ran out of holy water, I have avoided that site.

And this column proves that holy water is needed.

Allow me give some background. In California, the legislature passed SB1172, which keeps minors from being exposed to the fraudulent "reparative therapy," or therapy which would attempt to turn them from gay to straight. Several medical groups, including the American Psychological Association, have called "reparative therapy" useless and dangerous. CA Governor Jerry Brown signed the bill in September.

However, since the religious right have never let anything such as truth stand in their way, they have been vocal in opposing SB1172. Barber's organization, the Liberty Counsel, is suing against the law.

According to Barber, in his column, "reparative therapy" is important because:

Thousands of people, many of whom once identified as “gay,” have received positive, life-changing benefits from such counseling. Yet, among other things, the fact that people can, and do, leave homosexuality bulldozes the politically motivated, scientifically discredited “born that way” meme.

Naturally, Barber doesn't provide any proof for this. Barber, by the way, is not a medical professional. He has no degree nor any background in medical research. He is a failed insurance salesman who lucked into his status in religious right groups.

Subsequently, that's probably why he didn't provide proof of the above claim. Barber is unable to. Rather, he relies on written vitriol to shock his readers. Such as the following claim that SB1172 will expose children to being molested:

Despite intense, politically motivated denials from many on the left, research has established the astonishing frequency to which a “gay identity” or “sexual orientation” stems from childhood sexual abuse.   Sandusky Laws abuse these children all over again.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), for instance, found that “gay” men are “at least three times more likely to report CSA (childhood sexual abuse).”

The Archives of Sexual Behavior determined in a 2001 study that nearly half of all “gay”-identified men were molested by a homosexual pedophile: “46 percent of homosexual men and 22 percent of homosexual women reported having been molested by a person of the same gender. This contrasts to only 7 percent of heterosexual men and 1 percent of heterosexual women reporting having been molested by a person of the same gender.”

The connection between homosexual abuse and “gay identity” is undeniable.

It doesn't take a palm reader to figure out that Barber is misrepresenting several studies. First of all, he gives the impression that the CDC is saying that child sexual abuse leads to a gay identity. The CDC has not at any time ever connected the gay identity with child sexual abuse.

Furthermore, check out how Barber describes the 2001 Archives of Sexual Behavior study. This how he describes the results of the study:

The Archives of Sexual Behavior determined in a 2001 study that nearly half of all “gay”-identified men were molested by a homosexual pedophile:

Then he tells us what the study actually said:

“46 percent of homosexual men and 22 percent of homosexual women reported having been molested by a person of the same gender. This contrasts to only 7 percent of heterosexual men and 1 percent of heterosexual women reporting having been molested by a person of the same gender.”

The phrase "homosexual pedophile" in this case seems to be a creation of Barber's. We don't know if the perpetrator in this case identified themselves as gay or if they molested other children of a different gender.

Barber is implying that if a molester abuses a child of the same gender, that automatically makes him/her gay. This is simply not true. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center:

According to the American Psychological Association, "homosexual men are not more likely to sexually abuse children than heterosexual men are." Gregory Herek, a professor at the University of California, Davis, who is one of the nation's leading researchers on prejudice against sexual minorities, reviewed a series of studies and found no evidence that gay men molest children at higher rates than heterosexual men.

Anti-gay activists who make that claim allege that all men who molest male children should be seen as homosexual. But research by A. Nicholas Groth, a pioneer in the field of sexual abuse of children, shows that is not so. Groth found that there are two types of child molesters: fixated and regressive. The fixated child molester — the stereotypical pedophile — cannot be considered homosexual or heterosexual because "he often finds adults of either sex repulsive" and often molests children of both sexes. Regressive child molesters are generally attracted to other adults, but may "regress" to focusing on children when confronted with stressful situations. Groth found that the majority of regressed offenders were heterosexual in their adult relationships.

It is clear that Barber's attempt to turn a phrase in describing SB1172 as a "Jerry Sandusky" bill  as well as distorting legitimate studies to prove his point (Jerry Sandusky is the former Penn State College employee discovered to have molested a multitude of children) is simply an ugly act by a desperate man aligned with a desperate group attempting to protect a bad practice from its appropriate demise.






3 comments :

Tilghman Lesher said...

There's another case for being molested that is not covered here -- that of flamboyant young gay youth being raped by straight peers, in an effort to humiliate them. In that case, it is child-on-child rape, and while it is technically molestation, the perpetrators are not pedophiles.

I unfortunately know a few cases of this. There's a fundamental misrepresentation by Barber that because children are the victims, adults must have been the perpetrators. That is not always the case.

Anonymous said...

And what about the young men who are molested by their "ex-gay therapist?"

Anonymous said...

I am surprised you didn't mention the potential of such legislation to actually protect children from molestation. Given some of the repulsive methods employed in orientation change therapy, child molestation seems a possible outcome.