Psychotherapy banned in California

Gay conversion therapy not back with science

Chandra Morris | Collegio Writer

A California law signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Sept. 29 banned psychotherapy practice designed to make gay teenagers straight for a simple reason: That is not science.
Science is knowledge based on facts or principles. It is knowledge gained by systematic studying. This study needs to involve experiments and positive results.
This isn’t a gay rights issue. This law, which will take effect January 1, deals with the lack of science behind this form of psychotherapy. I strongly agree with Gov. Brown’s decision to sign this bill into law. I applaud his initiative for being bold enough to be the first of hopefully many states to ban this mockery of psychotherapy.
This practice does more harm than good. Mainstream experts in the field of psychotherapy say that teenagers who undergo this counseling run a significant risk of becoming depressed and suicidal. This form of counseling is based on the idea that homosexuality is a “mental illness.” This assertion is false. I wonder, how can people so widely oppose this law when the facts are so clear about the flaws of this therapy?
One argument says that parents should have the sole choice as to whether or not their child should receive this counseling. Yet, these parents are not throwing a fit about every other case where the law determines what they can permit their children to do. Teenagers can’t drink, can’t buy cigarettes and can’t participate in indoor tanning in some states. The government regulates these activities because they are potentially harmful to the individual. This psychotherapy is harmful. The government has a not only a right, but a duty, to protect these teenage patients from something that could permanently harm them.
For those people out there who do want to try to “rid” themselves of their homosexual tendencies, there are still ways. This bill does not address the use of organizations and ministries using counseling and prayer to try to help conflicted homosexual Christians. For our society, I think that is a good thing. We cannot try to make a sudden or drastic change and expect everyone to approve. Let people with their different views still have an out. Give them a way to express themselves and have a method to “help” those conflicted Christians.
In the long run, if it doesn’t hurt the individual who is participating in it, then my belief is, let people try what they will. It is the practices that harm people that I am not OK with. No one should approve of such things.
This is not something that comes down to opinions; it comes down to facts and science. Thankfully, Gov. Brown looked at that and saw that this psychotherapy was just not backed up by the science. My hope is that every other state can follow in California’s decision to ban this. I hope that these smart politicians will finally look at the science and see that there is none involved. It is the science and the facts that matter.

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