Another Victory Over Conversion Therapy
The tech giant Google has recently removed an app which was created by a Christian non-profit group Living Hope Ministries which was designed to assist people to “recovery from same-sex attraction”. Yet again the scourge of conversion therapy (attempting to “cure” people from homosexuality) rears its nasty, bigoted head again.
Here in the UK all legitimate organisations which represent mental health practitioners, including the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy, the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, the Royal College of Psychiatrists and British Psychological Society have all condemned this quack therapy.
I completely respect that there are many in Christianity who have a strong view that homosexuality is sinful. However, this view is NOT the view of society and frankly it is selective at best, and bigotry at worst. The reference usually quoted is “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them”. (Leviticus 20:13). However, Leviticus also says not to eat shellfish (Lev. 11:9-12), use mixed seed or fabrics (Lev. 19:19), harvest the corners of fields (Lev. 19:9). I do not see fundamental Christians calling for a mixture of prayer and therapy to “cure” people who do these things.
Clearly it is not for me to say that those who embrace Conversion Therapy are wrong and misguided, oh wait, yes it is. I am a psychotherapist, I understand therapy and biology and psychopathology. Being gay is not a disease to be cured of. It is high time that the practice of Conversion Therapy in all its forms is not a matter of religious freedom, but just good old fashioned prejudice which has no part to play in a civilised society. On a final note, if one reads about Jesus, the overriding message in his teachings is that of Love. In no place in the Bible does he stipulate how love is to be defined. So endeth the lesson.