Colorado Editorials

The Colorado Springs Gazette: California’s anti-conversion therapy law squashes the people’s right to choose

Author: The Colorado Springs Gazette Editorial Board - August 2, 2018 - Updated: August 2, 2018

The Human Rights Campaign should seriously rethink their support for California’s AB 2943.

AB 2943 “does one thing and one thing only.” It classifies soliciting “conversion therapy” as an unlawful and “deceptive” business practice.

The bill is currently before the California Senate, and if it passes, it’s sure to be hailed as a victory for LGBT activists. After all, “conversion therapy” — properly known as Sexual Orientation Change Efforts (SOCE) — has been condemned by numerous psychiatric professionals as ineffective and connected with high rates of suicide among LGBT people. Such a faulty and dangerous practice has no place in professional psychotherapy.

Except, of course, when it works.

Even in California, those who identify as former-LGBT are starting to come out of the woodwork. Emboldened by a strong sense of community and oneness, many have taken to the internet, sharing stories of how SOCE has drastically changed their lives for the better.

Each of these people — historically ridiculed, mocked, and marginalized by mainstream LGBT activists — tell how they have found peace with themselves, taking advantage of the freedom to choose SOCE as a means of therapy.

This is perhaps the most basic and most critical right granted to anyone, anywhere. The right to choose.

AB 2943, if passed, will eliminate that right for all LGBT people.

During early hearings, two people testified before California legislature. One former-gay man, one former-lesbian. Each cited experiences and friendships with others whose stories mirror their own.

“Some do want to live out their same-sex desires,” said Ken Williams, “and that is their right, but not everyone who finds themselves with same-sex desires is wanting to pursue that – is at peace with that.” These people, says Williams, deserve the right to pursue their own happiness and be the kind of people they want to be. No one – ever – should be told they do not have that right. Apparently, the Democrats of California think otherwise. By moving AB 2943 through the House to the Senate, they have sent a message to former-LBGT people. They have stomped on 1,071 formal voices of objection in favor of a measly 29 activist supporters.

The so-called “Human Rights Campaign,” by supporting AB 2943, has shown where they truly stand on LGBT rights. “You have the right to choose,” they’ve said, “but only if you choose to be gay. If you’re gay and you don’t want to be, then tough luck. You were born that way, so you’re stuck that way. You don’t get to choose. You don’t have that right.”

The Colorado Springs Gazette Editorial Board