Wednesday, October 2, 2019

The Sin of Conversion Therapy

Over the years, and even recently, I have been mocked for saying conversion therapy is torture. In case you aren't familiar, Conversion therapy is the pseudoscientific practice of trying to change an individual's sexual orientation from homosexual or bisexual to heterosexual using psychological or spiritual interventions. This therapy often includes locking people alone in a room with a bible. Conversion therapy is also sometimes performed on transgenders.

I just watched the story of 15 year old Alex Cooper who made the mistake of telling her parents she liked girls. Within a short time the girl was whisked way to St George, Utah, where she was placed with a husband and wife, the Simms, in their family home, who were to provide the conversion therapy. She was forced by her parents, grandparents, and the police to live with this couple for 8 months.

At first, the Simms did the typical forced bible study and brainwash techniques, such as mild punishments and repetitive language. Once, when Alex was caught asking for help in the grocery store, she was dragged from the store, tossed into the car, and punched in the stomach by Mr. Simms. At other times, she was whipped with a belt all over her body.

The Simms learned Alex had a girl friend, so they stepped up the punishment to try and get the girl's name. They filled a backpack with large rocks. Alex was forced to stand in the hallway, wearing the heavy backpack, facing the wall, from the moment she woke in the morning to the time she went to bed. She even ate standing facing the wall wearing the heavy backpack that she could barely lift.

When Alex showed her mother the severe bruises the straps of the backpack left on her shoulders, her mother shrugged it off. Her mother told the Simms what she had said and that day another large rock was placed in the backpack.

Weeks later, Alex confessed the name of her girlfriend and that she had learned her lesson. She was then allowed to enter public school. Her life greatly improved, but if she made the slightest error at school, such as being late for class, it was reported by the school staff to the Simms and she was punished. The young girl feared every teacher in the school, and the police. Mrs. Simms had worked with juvenile services and had connections. It became clear that most of the town approved of conversion therapy.

Eventually, Alex found a compassionate teacher who found her a lawyer. She escaped and eventually the courts declared she was free to live her life as a gay woman if that's what she wished. The Simms lost their jobs after this became public knowledge, but no one was ever prosecuted.

This might not be the typical conversion therapy, but we know that when this abuse became public knowledge, everyone closed their eyes and looked the other way. No child should be locked away, no matter if it's a bedroom or a jail cell, without having been convicted of a crime. No child should be forced to read the bible, or to kneel and pray until their knees are bruised. Anyone supporting this type of behavior manipulation are the true criminals.

Even what happened to Alex is a step up from conversion therapy of the past. As late as the 90's people were being given hormones to lower their sex drive. Before then, they were being castrated or having their brains operated on to change behavior.

In 2019 it's still a struggle to get such an archaic practice banned. Only a few states have banned conversion therapy for minors. There are those who believe homosexuality is so great a sin that anything goes to cure the person of the abomination. Gay people are commonly referred to as abominations and deviants by those who support conversion therapy. Alex's parents thought it better to torture their child in this life so they could all be together for eternity in Heaven.

We must be vigilant for any abuse of children. I doubt most people are even aware that conversion therapy happens, or if they do, what it truly means. Speaking out against conversion therapy doesn't mean you're encouraging young people to have sex, but it does protect them from abuse. For some, being gay is a choice as some love to believe, but for many, it's not. From the moment they enter puberty and begin thinking about romance, they are attracted to the same sex.

Those who support conversion therapy use examples of high suicide rates among homosexuals and transgender to back their support. Alex found a bottle of pills while living in the Simm's torture house. She tried to kill herself, but luckily survived. She didn't try to kill herself because she was gay, but because of the abuse.

Transgenders and Gay people are confused and feel guilt when they first learn they are different. Once they come to terms with themselves, they are abused by parents and schoolmates. Being different has always been hard. The smartest people in school are often bullied because they are sometimes different. Suicide rates are no excuse for using CIA or Communist mind control methods on children.

In the USA, we find a lot of people who believe they know more about being LGBT than trained professionals. Simply because they see something as a deviant behavior, they suddenly become the authority. They can even find a few conservative sources that support their beliefs. They will toss high suicide rates to support their claim that allowing people to be LGBT is wrong. Listening to these people is like taking your car to a kindergarten class to have it repaired.

If you want to know about transgender and gay people, go talk to them and listen to their stories. You'll quickly learn why suicide rates are high. What these people need is kindness, not hate or your opinions. The one thing they surely don't need is torture, sometimes called conversion therapy.

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