Pray the Gay Away

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Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Jzone » 3 September 2019, 17:00

Well well, what a surprise. </sarcasm> Conversion Therapy Founder Comes Out as Gay

I find it hard to feel compassion or forgiveness for people like this. :flame: He contributed to a huge amount of shame, emotional anguish, and anti-scientific, homophobic policies and attitudes. I might feel differently if he spends the rest of his life trying to undo the damage.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 3 September 2019, 17:53

From that article
Some 700,000 LGBTQ-identifying adults have gone through some form of conversion therapy as of 2018, according to UCLA’s Williams Institute, The Post and Courier notes.

Eighteen states and at least 50 cities and counties across the country have laws or regulations "protecting youth from this harmful practice," the Human Rights Campaign says.


I don't want to feel compassion or forgiveness for people like that and I simply won't. Not for the people who ran those places. Not for the parents forced (or even agreeably!) took their kids there. Never. But hey, my opinion and I'm OK with it.

The other thing I will say, it's appalling it can still happen in 32 states and in other countries.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Derek » 3 September 2019, 17:56

700,000 seems high.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Jzone » 3 September 2019, 18:00

Derek wrote:700,000 seems high.

Maybe that's counting the staff and volunteers...
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 3 September 2019, 18:18

And drilling down from that article

https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/Conversion-Therapy-LGBT-Youth-Jan-2018.pdf

It's truly sick it's still happening today. I wish one of these centers were near me. I'd try to arrange for some kind of protest or something.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Eryx » 3 September 2019, 21:53

The US in general is pretty interesting to study and understand. A country where abortion is legal in many places, but so is conversion therapy. A place where drugs are villains, but Xanax and Valium are widely available. The best healthcare capacity in the world, but without a real public alternative.

Meanwhile, Brazil outlawed conversion therapies in the 90s but there are Congressmen trying to outlaw abortions in rape cases (already illegal in all other situations except anencephaly), made HIV treatment generic by breaking patents but still struggles with domestic violence, boasts a strong public higher education system but cuts research scholarships.

Big countries are whack. I think the solution is dissolution.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 3 September 2019, 21:57

Fortunately things are changing. Just slower that we would like. Funny the recent abortion crap going down in this country came to mind immediately. I'm not exactly for abortion, not exactly against it. What I am against is forcing my beliefs upon another individual in that situation as well.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Eryx » 3 September 2019, 22:03

Considering who I am as a human being now, if there was the possibility that I could get a girl pregnant, I personally wouldn't give up on raising the kid. But yeah, as you said, that's me. I've got a good support group, money to raise my kid well, and education to get them far.

But that's not the case for everyone and even if it is for one girl out there, I think she has the right to keep living her life without this holding down her plans for her future. She needs options.

What happens now is that if I was a pregnant girl in my current position, my family would pay a hefty sum for a secret abortion that could end badly, and that would be that, while a 16-year-old girl who never had sexual education in a slum, after having two kids, would be obligated to have a third if something's to happen. For a life, against all their lives, because they'll be hungry, unhealthy and lacking opportunity.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 3 September 2019, 23:57

Oh, I agree. Forcing someone into doing something that is going to damage their life long term (make a bad situation worse, plenty of those stories) and to bring another life into that which was innocent of those decisions/actions is the first place, is just plain stupidity.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 4 September 2019, 00:05

Eryx wrote:Considering who I am as a human being now, if there was the possibility that I could get a girl pregnant, I personally wouldn't give up on raising the kid. But yeah, as you said, that's me. I've got a good support group, money to raise my kid well, and education to get them far.

But that's not the case for everyone and even if it is for one girl out there, I think she has the right to keep living her life without this holding down her plans for her future. She needs options.

What happens now is that if I was a pregnant girl in my current position, my family would pay a hefty sum for a secret abortion that could end badly, and that would be that, while a 16-year-old girl who never had sexual education in a slum, after having two kids, would be obligated to have a third if something's to happen. For a life, against all their lives, because they'll be hungry, unhealthy and lacking opportunity.


Repeatedly you've made comments about wanting and being able to have kids. So if you don't mind me asking, what stops you? There is adoption. My first born was a son and I was absolutely happy about it. We were planning on only one at the time. I would never tell either kid that nor the ex wife but still that was the reality. I love my daughter just as much if not more in her own ways. I would see it being the same as blood-born/adopted. Anyways I've been wanting to ask you that for some time now.

Oh, I can just imagine that we'd need a section on GFO for parenting. That surely would be hilarious.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Eryx » 4 September 2019, 04:24

I do mean to adopt and have a couple of kids, and that's fine, but I have that one bit of curiosity about what it would be like to see myself in my children.

When I was younger (already out), I used to say that friends or my sister would probably be willing to have a child for me -- friends with me, my sister with a partner -- and the truth is some of them would, but now that I'm older, and that I've seen my sister have my first niece, I don't feel like I'd be willing to force a 9-month pregnancy and partum just for me on somebody else.

Adoption it is, then, and it's fine, I just like to wonder from time to time what it would be like to see similar features there.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 5 September 2019, 00:04

Eryx wrote:I do mean to adopt and have a couple of kids, and that's fine, but I have that one bit of curiosity about what it would be like to see myself in my children.

When I was younger (already out), I used to say that friends or my sister would probably be willing to have a child for me -- friends with me, my sister with a partner -- and the truth is some of them would, but now that I'm older, and that I've seen my sister have my first niece, I don't feel like I'd be willing to force a 9-month pregnancy and partum just for me on somebody else.

Adoption it is, then, and it's fine, I just like to wonder from time to time what it would be like to see similar features there.


You got it phrased correctly the 1st time. You see yourself in them and yes it is amazing to experience that. When people first told me that my son looked like me, at such an early age, I didn't see it. But by the time he was 5 yo if you looked at pictures of me around that age you couldn't deny it. But as they get older it's more than just the physical appearance you realize. Well I hope some day you get to do it, I think you'll do well as a parent. It certainly leaves you with something lasting. As a side note, I look like my father quite a bit and his father before him so we've carried more than just the blood line along. I may have been born later in my parents life indicating an accident by good practicing Catholics but hey at least I didn't come from the postman. haha
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Derek » 5 September 2019, 00:33

Do you guys think it's possible to minister anti-gay therapy and not be, in some way, evil? Does "mistaken" suffice as an explanation, or is it not enough?
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby poolerboy0077 » 5 September 2019, 16:28

Derek wrote:Do you guys think it's possible to minister anti-gay therapy and not be, in some way, evil? Does "mistaken" suffice as an explanation, or is it not enough?

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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Derek » 5 September 2019, 18:48

poolerboy0077 wrote:
Derek wrote:Do you guys think it's possible to minister anti-gay therapy and not be, in some way, evil? Does "mistaken" suffice as an explanation, or is it not enough?

“Oh damn, I’ve traumatized you and have scarred you for life. My bad.”

The subject of the article seems to understand the gravity of his actions, but I just have a really hard time imagining how anyone who isn't a sociopath could done what he did, even with the best intentions. And how do you go on after that? If I was getting messages from people telling me I was the reason they attempted suicide, I think I literally could not live with the guilt and I would probably kill myself.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Jzone » 5 September 2019, 19:24

Good people can be conditioned to do horrible things, and justifying our actions in light of our worldview is something we all do. All it takes is surrounding yourself with people who agree with you. The most extreme views can seem like common sense to someone who does that.

I don't believe in 'evil'. In fact, I think the concept of evil leads to simplistic thinking and too often prevents us from dealing realistically with some of the challenges of human nature.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Derek » 5 September 2019, 19:44

But of course there are people - sadists, rapists, serial murderers - who do what they do because it brings them joy to cause suffering. Most would say that these people are evil, even as they obsess over them in film and literature or dedicate an entire branch of psychology to understanding them.

Anti-gay ministry isn't quite serial murder but the damage inflicted is no less real. I can buy that people can be desensitized to suffering, and they can rationalize almost anything through ideological lenses. However that isn't a sufficient explanation given that the horrors of the practice are abundantly clear to most people. Like how in war, some soldiers will plunder and rape when given the opportunity, but many won't. How do we explain it? The man in the article wasn't beaten or brainwashed. What causes a normal person to end up like that? How do you determine if he's redeemable?
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby mxguy01 » 5 September 2019, 20:06

I don't see how someone could live with themselves after that. That being said, either evil and/or somehow mentally deficient/influenced/biased in some way as that that person simply doesn't get it. Not an excuse but a reality that we can never be 100% sure how people think.

Everyone in the end is responsible for their actions. I don't wish him to kill himself but if he does, oh well. I do hope it haunts him until the day he dies. You know it's an entirely different level than throwing a few slurs or other hateful speech. He mentally tortured and likely physically tortured kids, teens and young adults for the most part. He was certainly responsible for both happening.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Jzone » 5 September 2019, 22:00

Derek wrote:But of course there are people - sadists, rapists, serial murderers - who do what they do because it brings them joy to cause suffering. Most would say that these people are evil, even as they obsess over them in film and literature or dedicate an entire branch of psychology to understanding them.

Film and literature most often offer inaccurate caricatures, and many of those depictions only add to the perception of some people as evil. Psychological study has a better chance of understanding them as profoundly mentally ill.

Anti-gay ministry isn't quite serial murder but the damage inflicted is no less real. I can buy that people can be desensitized to suffering, and they can rationalize almost anything through ideological lenses. However that isn't a sufficient explanation given that the horrors of the practice are abundantly clear to most people. Like how in war, some soldiers will plunder and rape when given the opportunity, but many won't. How do we explain it? The man in the article wasn't beaten or brainwashed. What causes a normal person to end up like that? How do you determine if he's redeemable?

I don't question that the damage done by this sad case of a man is real. Are the horrors of conversion therapy "abundantly clear to most people?" That I question. It is still a minority of states that outlaw the practice in the US, and some other countries are much less charitable. People used to gather by the thousands to witness public executions, some of them deliberately slow to add to the spectacle. These were men, women, children, families, clergy, community leaders, people from all walks of life.

I have no explanation for why some soldiers plunder and rape while others don't — except that both have long been observed as part of human nature (and primate nature, if you want to explore that tangent). How we define a "normal person" has changed dramatically over time and across cultures. I just hope that what is normal only improves as time goes on.
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Re: Pray the Gay Away

Unread postby Derek » 6 September 2019, 00:09

Jzone wrote:Film and literature most often offer inaccurate caricatures, and many of those depictions only add to the perception of some people as evil. Psychological study has a better chance of understanding them as profoundly mentally ill.

The point isn't that entertainment is accurate but that labeling behavior clearly does not close people's minds to examining it, scientifically, socially, and culturally.

I have no explanation for why some soldiers plunder and rape while others don't — except that both have long been observed as part of human nature (and primate nature, if you want to explore that tangent). How we define a "normal person" has changed dramatically over time and across cultures. I just hope that what is normal only improves as time goes on.

Another constant throughout history, in every culture, is the importance placed on the concept of evil in attempting to understand human suffering. What better way to describe the propensity of some people to cause harm when others would not do the same in their place? Margins shift, but the outliers are always there.

The man in the article is an outlier. Most anti-gay sentiment is knee-jerk laziness - idiots who don't know any gay people and are reflexively hostile to anything foreign. But this guy can't claim ignorance as an excuse. In fact, he knows better than almost anyone else. It's not normal and deserves examination on those terms.
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