01 January 2015

Petition For Leelah's Law

So...What are your wishes for the New Year?

One of mine is that a "Leelah's Law" is passed to ban "conversion therapy" everywhere in the US.

I'll confess that my idea is not original:  Dan Savage has called for it.  And I'm sure someone else thought of such a law before Leelah Alcorn's suicide murder.  Now there's a petition for it on Change.org.  Please sign it! 

Mainstream psychiatric and medical organizations say that "conversion therapy"--which is usually used to try to turn gay people straight ("pray the gay away") but is also sometimes used as an attempt to purge trans people of the notion that they are gender by which they identify themselves--has no basis in scientific or medical research or practice.  In fact, those organizations warn of the potential hazards of "conversion therapy", including the innacurate views about sexual orientation and gender identity that it helps to support, and about the potential damage from the practices involved in the "therapy."  

In fact, the common practices used by "Christian therapists" and others who practice "conversion therapy" are all but never used in any other kind of therapeutic or medical practice.  And, of course, there are concerns about the qualifications of those who practice "conversion therapy".  Some have not engaged in any other kind of practice; in fact, some are not even trained to conduct pyschotherapy or to provide any sort of health care.  This is especially true in some states with lax requirements for licensing--or where people can certify themselves as "counselors" and practice things like "conversion therapy" by giving them other names.

Anyone who practices "conversion therapy" on a minor should be indicted for child abuse; anyone who practices it on an adult should be charged with fraud, at least, and perhaps terrorism.  Finally, I think any parent who forces his or her kid into "conversion therapy" should lose his or her right to be a parent.

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