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RTS CNG Command

California law bans gay teen "conversion" therapy

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California has become the first state to ban a controversial form of psychotherapy aimed at making gay teenagers straight.

 

Gov. Jerry Brown announced Sunday that he had signed SB1172 by Democratic Senator Ted Lieu of Torrance. The law, which prohibits sexual orientation change efforts for anyone under 18, will stop children from being psychologically abused, Lieu said.

 

Effective Jan. 1, the state will ban what is known as reparative or conversion therapy for minors. The therapies "have no basis in science or medicine and they will now be relegated to the dustbin of quackery," Brown said in a statement.

 

Mainstream mental health organizations have disavowed such therapy, and a number of mental health associations in California — including the state's Board of Behavorial Sciences, the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists and the California Psychological Association — supported the legislation.

 

Gay rights groups have called the practice dangerous because it can put youth at higher risk of depression and suicide.

 

"We're grateful to Gov. Brown for standing with California's children," the Human Rights Campaign said in a statement. "LGBT youth will now be protected from a practice that has not only been debunked as junk science, but has been proven to have drastically negative effects on their well-being."

 

The group called on other states to follow California's lead on the issue.

 

Conservative religious groups and some Republicans have argued that banning conversion therapy would hinder parents' right to provide psychological care for children experiencing gender confusion.

 

The Encino, Calif.-based National Association for Research and Therapy on Homosexuality said in August that the bill was a case of "legislative overreach," and Lieu's claims of harm to children were based on politics, not research.

 

http://news.yahoo.co...-053700163.html

 

The CNN article explains more: http://www.cnn.com/2...-ban/index.html

 

This is really good and important news for same-sex-rights activists in California. Gay teen conversion "therapies" are driven exclusively by religion. There are no clear scientific, medical methods to convert a gay, bisexual, or pansexual individual to an exclusively straight person. This practice is child abuse: It's done nothing except marginalize LGBT teens; drive LGBT teens into deeper, more depressed situations; and promote homophobia. It's about time that a state got involved and outlawed this disgusting "therapy." Now New Jersey lawmakers are planning to propose a ban similar to California's.

 

That's the good news. Unfortunately, the Liberty Counsel is planning to file a lawsuit to block the ban.

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Won't stop anything over 18. And the difference between a 16 and 18 year old is marginal at best.

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And there's another lawsuit in the works, this time by a "cured" "ex-gay."

 

A college student who claims he once had same-sex attractions but became heterosexual after conversion therapy has filed a lawsuit against California, which has enacted a law that bans so-called "gay cures" for minors.

 

The lawsuit, also joined as plaintiffs by two therapists who have used the treatments with patients, alleges that the law banning the therapy intrudes on First Amendment protections of free speech, privacy and freedom of religion.

 

The student, Aaron Blitzer, who is studying to be a therapist in that field, said the law would prevent him from pursuing his career, according to court papers filed Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California.

 

The lawsuit names as defendants California Gov. Jerry Brown, as well as 21other state officials, including members of the California Board of Behavioral Sciences and the California Medical Board.

 

The other plaintiffs are Donald Welsch, a licensed family therapist and ordained minister who operates a Christian counseling center in San Diego; and Dr. Anthony Duk, a psychiatrist and practicing Roman Catholic.

 

Both say the law would restrict their counseling practices, according to the lawsuit.

 

"It's it's an egregious violation of the rights of young people feeling same-sex attraction, and of parents and counselors who feel it would be beneficial for the individual needs of a young person," said Brad Dacus, president and attorney for the conservative Pacific Justice Institute, which asked a federal judge to prevent the law from taking effect.

 

"The legislature had an errant assumption that every individual struggling with same-sex attraction is caused by their DNA," he said. "It ignores thousands, including the plaintiff, who have gone through therapy and are now in a happy and healthy heterosexual relationship."

Dacus declined ABC News' request for direct access to the plaintiffs.

 

Just this week, California lawmakers voted to outlaw therapy aimed at changing the sexual orientation of minors who say they are gay, making California the first state to adopt such legislation. The law is set to go into effect Jan. 1, 2013.

 

The bill's sponsor, California state Sen. Ted Lieu, said the therapy -- called "conversion therapy," "sexual orientation therapy," "reparative therapy" or "sexual orientation change efforts" -- amounts to "psychological child abuse."

 

"I read the lawsuit and, as a matter of fiction, it is a good read," Lieu said in a prepared statement after the suit was filed. "But from any reasonable legal standard, the lawsuit is frivolous. Under the plaintiffs' argument, the First Amendment would shield therapists and psychiatrists from medical malpractice and psychological abuse claims simply because they use speech in practicing their medicine. That is a novel and frivolous view of the First Amendment."

 

Lieu is not named as a defendant in the lawsuit.

 

Several members of the California Board of Behavioral Sciences and the California Mental Board were named in the lawsuit.

 

 

This lawsuit is a bunch of bullshit. It's NOT a "freedom of speech," "freedom of religion," nor "freedom to privacy" issue. Reparative therapy is malpractice and abuse that has caused trauma and has no objective scientific proof. This type of "therapy" hasn't worked. When this therapy — or any other kind of "ex-gay" therapy — results in non-heterosexual minors' LIVES being put at stake, the California government has every right to butt in and protect them.

 

And this law doesn't discourage psychiatrists from discussing with minors about their sexual orientation nor does it discourage suggesting minors and their kin methods to progress in their lives while being proud of their orientation. This law discourages the method of providing any type of "therapy" to "cure" their innate orientation, either by force or by suggestion. This ban only affects California, but New Jersey may be next if the lawmakers make good on their promise and successfully pass the ban, too.

Edited by RTS CNG Command
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