At some point it all becomes compulsory, doesn’t it?

As with ethnic diversity, at first we’re told that we must tolerate it, even accept it: which is fair enough. But it’s not all that long before we’re told we have to celebrate it. And it looks like the CoE is finding out that such diversity isn’t the only subject upon which this tendency works:

The Church of England has been criticised for failing to condemn a Christian conference which backed a “cure” for homosexuality.

A member of the Church’s General Synod was one of the principle organisers of the controversial gathering which promoted therapies for “unwanted same-sex attractions”.

Speakers at the one-day conference said that homosexuality was an “assault” on God’s creation.

A series of presentations to a 150-strong audience in central London suggested some gay people who volunteered to undergo specialist therapeutic treatment could become heterosexual.

So let’s just think about that initial claim, shall we? That therapy can change sexual orientation. Unlikely, to be honest. Well, actually, human sexuality is sufficiently complex that we can find examples of absolutely anything in it. So, obviously, yes, there’s some people who before speaking to the trick cyclist who would fancy blokes and afterwards women. But a pityably small portion of the population methinks.

However, religion itself, as well as “therapy” (hey, they’re all tricks about belief after all) can most certainly change sexual expression even if not the underlying desires so much. As, of course, can love itself as has happened a few times when some famously gay character ends up with a bird. So while we’d probably not accept the larger claim as being important, we probably would accept the smaller one as being potentially so. Put the fear of Hellfire into people and they might stop buggering about. Maybe.

he Rev Colin Coward, director of Changing Attitude, a Church of England group which lobbies for greater inclusion of gay people, said he found the conference “deeply worrying”.

“The Church of England has not begun to tackle the issue of these so-called conversion therapies,” said Mr Coward.

“All those in senior positions of the Church of England have been deeply cowardly on this.

“The Church is giving space to individuals and groups that are deeply damaging to the health and wellbeing of Church members.”

The Rev Dr Christina Beardsley, a hospital chaplain and member of Changing Attitude, also expressed concern about the Church’s stance.

“I am disappointed that the Church of England could not be more emphatic in discouraging people from engaging in this sort of therapy,” she said.

“It is really very regrettable that they have not done so.”

Hmm. so that call for tolerance has advanced sufficiently to the point that even discussion of what was, for a couple of thousand years, the Church’s standing attitude towards human sexuality should not be tolerated? My, doesn’t time fly?

74 comments on “At some point it all becomes compulsory, doesn’t it?

  1. Tim

    I think Peter Simple’s the Reverend Spacely-Trellis would be considered an example of Poe’s Law now. Seriously shocking stuff – I happen to think the therapy is probably ill-advised, but as you say the idea that criticism of behaviours which scripture (and not just Christian) condemns in no uncertain terms is now verging on ‘blasphemy’ is surely an excellent reflection of the contemporary intellectual scene. Indeed these people should look to what ISIS are up to as the likely outcome and future for the LGBTTQQFAGPBDSM (the current en vogue acronym) community – let’s hope they can fly – there are a buildings a lot taller in the UK than those in Syria and Iraq!

    Additionally Isn’t it supposed to be Christian to turn the other cheek? indeed the U.S President suggested that the right response to the Garissa massacre and the various outrages in Syria and Iraq was for Christians to fret over an ‘Islamophobic’ backlash. Strange then that these campaigners feel unable to exert similar tolerance for beliefs other than their own.

  2. The ‘love that dare not speak its name’ has become the love that won’t fucking shut up.

  3. So no, this isn’t about tolerance of differing beliefs, this is about tolerance of something that does measurable harm to the people who undergo it.

    You may be right about the ‘therapy’ being of any value but do you have any citations for the ‘measurable harm’? I suspect (the numbers being relatively small) there is no robust data.

  4. I can’t get my head around the fact that it is ‘bad’ to try and change people’s internal orientation, because it’s ‘genetically predetermined’, but totally acceptable to hack their external body parts to suit…

  5. Note the usual dismissal of personal agency: the treatments seem to be ‘voluntary’, for people with ‘unwanted same-sex attractions’.

    If you start from the assumption people don’t know what they want, you can’t help them. You’re just the next con artist.

  6. If attempting to convince someone to change their sexual orientation causes such harm, heaven knows what damage convincing them to believe in God does.

  7. Bloke (not) in Spain has it.

    So I wish to ban a certain group because of the “measurable harm” their voluntary program causes. So measurable in fact that there is no need ever to measure it.

    But then somebody comes along and condemns the measurable harm my being allowed to speak of my faith causes. What do I say then? What study can I insist should be carried out? What objective test to preserve my right?

  8. If Rev Dr Christina Beardsley thinks that it is ‘disappointing’ that the Church of England doesn’t discourage people from engaging in ‘this sort of therapy’, where, I wonder, does she stand on those nutters with ‘body dymorphism syndrome’, who think cutting off a leg will make them happy?

    Presumably, it’d be cruel to try to discourage them?

  9. And also see Ben S’ comment.

    How these people don’t go bugfuck insane themselves from all the contradictions they must have to deal with, I really don’t know.

  10. “But then somebody comes along and condemns the measurable harm my being allowed to speak of my faith causes.”

    If you’re a psychiatrist pushing faith as a way to “cure” something then yes, it should be condemned. Can you see the difference between that and speaking your mind as a layman?

    ” can’t get my head around the fact that it is ‘bad’ to try and change people’s internal orientation, because it’s ‘genetically predetermined’, but totally acceptable to hack their external body parts to suit…”

    Because it turns out it’s possible to change the body but not possible to change the brain. No contradiction at all.

  11. “If you’re a psychiatrist pushing faith as a way to “cure” something then yes, it should be condemned. Can you see the difference between that and speaking your mind as a layman?”

    No.

  12. Some CofE members disagreeing with other CofE members about homosexuality doesn’t make it compulsory.

    Those offering a cure will probably go out of business through lack of interest, and that will be that.

    Neither does this mean that we’re yet again being spanked, bullied and generally rogered by an all-powerful gay lobby. Those that continue to believe this should, a) speak for themselves, and, b) be aware that there will be plenty of websites catering for that sort of fantasy.

  13. Matthew L,
    The people in question in the original post are already members of a religion. So the pyschiatrist is unlikely to recommend faith as a cure.

    On whether its harmful, it’s hard to know. To the best of my knowledge there are no randomised controlled trials in which 50% of patients were offered conversion therapy, while the other 50% were just offered a friendly chat. Referring to your Onion link, it seems plausible that of the people who go so far as to seek conversion therapy, a disproportionate number may already have suicidal thoughts. Again, mere speculation.

    I thought the Church’s view was that you could be gay in your head as much as you wanted, but you shouldn’t ever put the ideas into practice? Or is that only the Catholic church?

  14. OK Matthew
    “Apart from one having recognised certification for being delusional & the other hasn’t, no.”

    Better?

  15. JuliaM – if Rev Dr Christina Beardsley thinks that it is ‘disappointing’ that the Church of England doesn’t discourage people from engaging in ‘this sort of therapy’, where, I wonder, does she stand on those nutters with ‘body dymorphism syndrome’, who think cutting off a leg will make them happy?

    Well, given that the Rev Dr Christina Beardsley is a man who had his bits chopped off, I think we can guess.

    Look, I’m not exactly super religious. But I expect a minimum set of things from my religious folks:

    * A sense of the sublime
    * A clear and unambiguous moral code
    * God’s blessing when I smite my enemies

    Otherwise, what’s the point?

    And what’s this:

    A member of the Church’s General Synod was one of the principle organisers of the controversial gathering

    No, you fools! It’s principal. This is supposed to be the Torygraph, not some illiterate chav’s MySpace page.

    A series of presentations to a 150-strong audience in central London suggested some gay people who volunteered to undergo specialist therapeutic treatment could become heterosexual.

    I’ve no idea if they’re right, but:

    * Human sexuality is a spectrum, or so I’ve heard. So maybe some folks who only bat for the other side a little bit can change the wiring in their brain.

    * Even if they had a “cure” for homosexuality, the gay rights lobby would still hate them. This isn’t about efficacy of treatment.

    “All those in senior positions of the Church of England have been deeply cowardly on this. said Mr. Coward.

    BTW, this is Mr Coward and his partner. If they don’t sing “Ebony and Ivory” at parties, I’ll be disappointed.

    A spokesman for Stonewall, the gay rights group, said: “A conference like this demonstrates that there is still a lot more for Stonewall to do.

    Give us money!

    “Sexuality is not something that can, or should, be cured.

    What about people who are sexually attracted to squirrels?

  16. @MatthewL

    You’re seriously citing that as evidence of harm? I have no dog in this fight but critical appraisal of medical literature is an interest. That is laughable if you’re presenting Freudian psychobabble as evidence.

  17. If you are trying to convert people who don’t want to be converted –then yes that would obviously be harmful. Likewise people who are being pressured to undertake a cure that they are ambivalent (no pun intended) about.

    However it should not be forgotten that there are people who are plagued by homosexual thoughts and urges that they do not want and wish to be free of. A late friend of mine was a therapist who had several clients seek out treatment on just those grounds. At least two of them told him that after visiting numerous therapists previously–all of whom just encouraged them to “come out” –that they intended to commit suicide rather than live their lives as something they did not want to be. Fortunately he was able to help them get rid of thoughts/feelings they did not want. This work was done on an individual basis rather than as some sort of “program” which likely accounts for its greater success.

  18. bloke (not) in spain – Reds or greys?

    Red squirrels are asking for it. What with those fluffy auburn tails.

  19. Far be it from me to speak for our host, but i suspect what he’s getting at by titling this “At some point it all becomes compulsory, doesn’t it?” Is what happens with all “Progressive” projects (the clue is in the “Progressive” bit) which has been outlined by the Thomist philosopher, Dr Ed Feser:

    http://edwardfeser.blogspot.co.uk/2009/12/evolution-of-liberalism-and.html?m=1

    To the charge that liberals are (or, given their principles, should be) in favor of X [where X = legalizing abortion, liberalizing obscenity laws, banning smoking on private property, legalizing “same-sex marriage,” outlawing the public advocacy of traditional sexual morality, etc. etc.], the standard liberal response goes through about five stages (with, it seems, roughly 5-10 years passing between each stage, though sometimes the transition is much quicker than that). Here they are:

    Stage 1: “Oh please. Only a far-right-wing nutjob would make such a paranoid and ridiculous accusation – I suppose next you’ll accuse us of wanting to poison your precious bodily fluids!”

    Stage 2: “Well, I wouldn’t go as far as X. All the same, it’s good to be open-minded about these things. I mean, people used to think ending slavery was a crazy idea too…”

    Stage 3: “Hey, the Europeans have had X for years and the sky hasn’t fallen. But no, I admit that this backward country probably isn’t ready for X yet.”

    Stage 4: “Of course I’m in favor of X – it’s in the Constitution! Only a far-right-wing nutjob could possibly oppose it.”

    Stage 5: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can be used against you in a court of law…”

  20. Steve:

    “Look, I’m not exactly super religious. But I expect a minimum set of things from my religious folks:
    * A sense of the sublime
    * A clear and unambiguous moral code
    * God’s blessing when I smite my enemies”

    The good news is that you probably can find what you’re looking for. The bad news is that you won’t be able to get a bacon sandwich.

  21. Steve: “Well, given that the Rev Dr Christina Beardsley is a man who had his bits chopped off, I think we can guess.”

    *speechless*

  22. Jack C – Nah. I look like a really sexy tramp when I grow a beard.

    Christianity used to be cool, when it was about building awe-inspiring cathedrals, going on Crusade, and miracles.

    What is it about now? Old men who look like effete wizards, warbling about climate change and other tedious shit they read in the Guardian. Dumpy little lady vicars who seem unaccountably pleased with themselves, finger-wagging about “tolerance” and “diversity”.

    Fuck that.

    I’m starting my own religion, based on the Warhammer 40k universe. It’s going to be for manly men and fit birds only.

    Its tenets will include:

    * Lasers
    * Epic space battles
    * Green-skinned alien babes

    I call it: Mantology.

  23. “The ‘love that dare not speak its name’ has become the love that won’t fucking shut up.”

    Wins

  24. Christianity was always uncool …. unless you were on the inside with access to the booze, the babes and the cash. And who wants to die of dysentery in a ship bound for Palestine?

    “What would Bertie Wooster do?” That’s the question.

  25. I don’t know whether it can be ‘cured’ or not – I imagine both sides are approaching this debate at right angles to reason and science.

    One embarrassing point for the SJWs though – if sexuality cannot be changed or ‘cured’, why do we ‘treat’ paedophiles and then release them because they are now ‘safe’ to live in the community?

    A man who fancies 12 year old boys can be cured but it is nonsense and insane to say a man who fancies 18 year olds cannot?

  26. Jack C – I am intrigued by your religion of Woosterianity.

    Please tell me it involves wearing silk socks.

  27. Tim,

    That therapy can change sexual orientation. Unlikely, to be honest.

    Why is it unlikely? It’s not even controversial to state that conditioning can cause sexual attraction to inanimate objects and weird unnatural fetishes. Why on Earth would we believe that someone can be conditioned to be sexually aroused by high-heeled shoes, gas masks, and, yes, squirrel suits, but the idea that they could be induced to fancy a human being of the opposite sex is quackery?

    Whether any of the current attempts at such therapy actually work is another matter. But the idea that it is impossible requires a hell of a lot of evidence that has yet to be provided.

    Matthew L,

    > Because it turns out it’s possible to change the body but not possible to change the brain.

    No, you’re leaping here from “hasn’t yet been done successfully” to “can’t be done”.

    Steve,

    > What about people who are sexually attracted to squirrels?

    People in squirrel suits, OK, but squirrels? That’s just sick.

  28. I think the opposition to the very idea of such therapies is a bit selfish. A rare comment from Ecks that is actually worth reading.

    I’m not much for group membership myself. If I were gay and part of a church who hated gays, I’d just tell them to fuck off and then I would fuck off. But I recognise that that solution doesn’t suit everyone. Some people really can’t bear the thought of existing outside their church. Some people have bigotted intolerant families whom they nonetheless love and want to remain part of. It’s all very well for me to tell them to come out and be themselves, but I don’t have to live with that decision myself, do I? If someone is gay and wants to be straight, who the hell am I to tell them to be proudly gay just to satisfy my worldview?

  29. Steve,
    Silk socks? Subject to Jeeves’ approval of course.

    Think of Bertie as the Perfection to which we should all aspire, with Jeeves as the benign deity in the background, steering us away from scrapes, bad ties and proto-feminists.

  30. Much of psychotherapy is nonsense and harmful. There is surprising silence from the SJWs for instance of the known effect of inducing false memories of abuse in patients, which is well documented. Multiple Personality Disorder is probably iatrogenic. And so on.

    But all anyone cares about is this sort of proposed therapy. The dogma is that sexual tastes cannot be changed. But people often do change their taste; I have known straights become gay, and gays become straight. When my sister was 19, she had a relationship with an actor in his 50s who had been in a gay relationship for most of his adult life; when the (older) partner died, he concluded, quietly, that he was not gay and never had been. He was not bitter or angry about it; his own explanation was that theatre is just a very gay environment and it’s easy for a young man to get caught up in it. But that was in the early 1980s before the Born Gay Dogma arrived.

    It is hard to change our preferences. I detest Country And Western Music and love Space Rock. If I wished things were the other way around, it would be hard for me to change, or for a therapist to change me, but it does not mean I was born to like Hawkwind and hate the Grand Old Opry whatever it is.

    The next point to take into account is that this is a reminder that- contrary to views often expressed on the Right- Progressives, SJWs, whatever are not “moral relativists”. They are moral absolutists who sometimes use relativist sounding arguments when it suits them, which boil down to: “Who are you to judge? It is up to US to judge!”.

    The main point though is what this means for religious faith. It is essential to Christian doctrine (of most forms) that human beings are moral agents and sin or good behaviour are their own choices. Thus that the human being, through an act of will, an act of faith, can change. They can choose not to sin, they can redeem themself. It is also the nature of Christian faith that certain acts and thoughts are considered sinful. Other people may not agree that these things are sins or wrong in any way, but that is not the point. Christians do, and must be entitled to believe that these things are sinful.

    Talking of sex, Christians generally believe that adultery, extra-marital sex, inner lust for these things, looking at pornography, and masturbation are all against God’s will. Homosexuality is only one in a considerable list of sexual sins. If the Church is not entitled to hold an opinion on these matters and advise their flock to reject these sins, there is no religious freedom left in Britain. It’s as simple as that.

    It is terrifying indeed that 2000 years of religious faith can be rendered verboten by the dogmas of a small number of secular radicals in the space of a generation.

  31. I don’t give a shit about the C of E, gays who want to stay gay, gays who want to go straight, people outraged at the idea that some people think there could even be gays who want to go straight, or squirrels.

    I’m increasingly asking myself what my personal dog is in all these fights.

  32. We also need some research into why painting a woman green makes her sex on a stick (Orions, She-Hulk, that bird in Guardians Of The Galaxy etc). Or indeed blue. The whole Mystique thing about how she hates humanity because they don’t find her hot when blue and naked falls apart every time she walks on screen.

  33. BNIS – “If attempting to convince someone to change their sexual orientation causes such harm, heaven knows what damage convincing them to believe in God does.”

    Hasn’t it been shown that religious people live longer, happier lives?

    Matthew L – “it turns out it’s possible to change the body but not possible to change the brain”

    Really? So it is not possible to persuade a chap that he doesn’t fancy other chaps, but it is possible to make him a woman if he thinks he is one? Really?

  34. It’s also worth noting that there is currently a craze for therapists from both Christian and Progressive-Left backgrounds promoting the idea that they can “cure” men of an interest in pornography. Where’s the condemnation for these people who are trying to cure a desire which is natural and innate?

  35. Ian,

    God, yeah, Mystique. Normal humans all go, “Yeuuurrggghh! She’s different!” when we all know that half of them would be going, “Phwoooaaaaar! She’s different!” and the other half, “Oh, wow, she’s different. Bitch.”

  36. Matthew L

    1. “If you’re a psychiatrist pushing faith as a way to “cure” something then yes, it should be condemned. Can you see the difference between that and speaking your mind as a layman?”

    2. “Because it turns out it’s possible to change the body but not possible to change the brain.”

    Surely if 2 is true then the psychiatrist cannot present any danger and 1 cannot be true.

  37. The thing about Mystique is that she’s actually a super-hot human woman painted blue.

    I can get into that.

    An actual blue thing that looks like a human woman, I don’t think I could.

    Doubtless a Scouse-African accountant called Neil/Ironman will be along in a moment to explain that people who don’t like blue mutants are racists and secretly hate Jews or ‘muzzies’, as he likes to call Muslims.

  38. “So, Mystique, why do you hate humanity?”

    “Because humanity hates me because in my natural form I’m a super-hot naked blue woman.”

    “Ah… um, anything else?”

    “Yes, I can change form to look like any woman in the world, real or imaginary. What man would want a girlfriend like me?”.

  39. Have you got an address for her?.

    That last bit is the dealmaker. All of them in one and no hassles with jealousy.

  40. ~ BNIS – “If attempting to convince someone to change their sexual orientation causes such harm, heaven knows what damage convincing them to believe in God does.”

    Hasn’t it been shown that religious people live longer, happier lives? ~

    Possibly.
    Their victims, not so much.

  41. The strange thing is, if Tim’s original post had been about the merits of green and blue women, it would have ended up as a furious row about gays and christianity.

  42. Ian B is almost right – and 99.99% closer than anyone else. Christianity demands (but cannot enforce) chastity; I know two (OK, at least two, but two who have confided in me) Christians who feel a natural inclination towards homosexuality but have struggled and succeeded at remaining chaste. I know quite a few people who consider themselves Christian who are living with a partner of the opposite sex to whom they are not married.

  43. If you claim to be a Christian whilst also “living in sin”, then you’re actually saying that you’re not a Christian.

    The penalty, after all, is eternal damnation in the fiery pit of Hell, etc, possibly with the Birdie Song on endless repeat.

  44. I’m no expert on Christianity – raised a Catholic – or any religion, but isn’t this stuff about living in sin more about the church’s laws than God’s?

    I may be completely wrong, but I can’t remember any restriction in either the 10 Commandments or the Sermon on the Mount etc against ‘living in sin’.

  45. Interested,

    Yes, and furthermore marriage is something the Church adopted from the state (not, as is often claimed, the other way around). Why should the Church even care whether two people have an official state marriage? If they’re both Christian and act in a Christian way and are faithful and loving to each other… well, maybe insist that they have their relationship blessed, but why insist on marriage? Render unto Caesar.

  46. @ S2
    misclicked
    The rest of your comment is correct: in France it is possible to be married in church and not by the state and vice versa.

  47. I suppose *someone* should have mentioned this conference had attendees amounting to *two* in a million of the UK population, so failing to meet Pterry’s standard of an exact one in a million chance.
    How long must wait until we get some loon condemning the CofE for failing to condemn the Communist Party or those putting “Jedi Knight” on the census form?

  48. Interested,

    I’m discussing Christianity as a faith as it is, not getting into the history and theology of it. The point is that Christianity, and other faiths, make moral rules which they insist their followers should follow. The ideal of Christianity for most of its history was chastity, and if you couldn’t achieve that, you should marry. Where they got that from isn’t I think of much importance, any more than where Judaism got the whole bacon sandwiches are evil thing. It’s part of the religion as it is.

    Marriage in England was originally a civil contract awarded by nobody; the Church gradually moved from blessing such unions to controlling them, and then the State made them a matter of State business. But marriage as an institution predates both of them, as it does everywhere on Earth, as it extends back into prehistory as a reflection of normal human pair bonding.

    I’m always wheeling this example out, but Chaucer’s Wife Of Bath had multiple marriages “at the church door” because you got married outside and then went in for a subsequent blessing by the priest, which was not the marriage itself but merely approval of it by God. in those times.

    Neither did you get any form of licence or approval from the State. Marriage was a private contract, which was why they had witnesses and so on.

  49. Only sort of on topic, but any help would be appreciated.
    Family friend on hard times thinks becoming a counsellor would be a cool career move. Is The Institute of Counsellling . org kosher (ahem)?

    My instinct is that you need no diploma to be a marabout, homeopath, marxist or whatever, so why not just go for it. But do diplomas matter, and do these courses work?

  50. From much earlier up thread:

    heaven knows what damage convincing them to believe in God does.

    Fear not, most of the CofE gave up on believing in God (never mind convincing anyone else to believe in him) a long time ago.

  51. IanB –

    …you got married outside and then went in for a subsequent blessing by the priest, was not the marriage itself but merely approval of it by God.

    That is still true in Germany and, I’m told, also in Portugal (perhaps OGH could enlighten us on that one).

    It’s the mixing of church and state in Britain which has confused matters and is, I believe, responsible for most of the nonsense coming from those opposed to gay “marriage”.

  52. john77 – “Christianity demands (but cannot enforce) chastity;”

    TW has pointed out before that rape rates have collapsed. Which he puts down to porn, but which I would put down to DNA tests. But what is interesting is that in the US they have collapsed to about where they were in 1960. Christianity, pretty much on its own, with some pretty robust police enforcement, kept rape rates down to where modern science has just managed.

    Christianity doesn’t do a bad job. Actually.

    The opposition to conversion therapy seems to me to be because it might work.

  53. What with women who want to be men and the one child policy in China there will soon be a high shortage of females available to males. So ‘gay’ is being advertised before it become the ony choice. ( ref POW camps , prisons etc)

  54. @ SMFS
    I think that we actually agree, more or less, on something. I suspect Old Testament Judaism was also pretty effective at limiting rape as there were no repeat offenders (since God would only resurrect the righteous).

  55. Jack C
    “If you claim to be a Christian whilst also “living in sin”, then … blah, blah blah”.

    Not so. All the best Christians are sinners and freely admit to the fact.

  56. Jack C – “Some CofE members disagreeing with other CofE members about homosexuality doesn’t make it compulsory.”

    But that is not what this dispute is about is it? I mean, I can see why you need to stop short of actually understanding the complaint. Crimethink and all that. But here the CoE is being criticised because it failed to attack someone who offered a medical treatment the SJWs did not like. They are not disagreeing about homosexuality. The SJWs are insisting that it is wrong not to join their cause – mere silence is itself wrong.

    “Those offering a cure will probably go out of business through lack of interest, and that will be that.”

    Then let the market rip. I notice your side of the argument won’t and wants these people banned. That suggests that there is a market.

    “Neither does this mean that we’re yet again being spanked, bullied and generally rogered by an all-powerful gay lobby.”

    No, but the idea that silence is itself wrong and we must condemn whatever the SJWs insist we condemn or we are somehow morally culpable, does mean that we are, again, being bullied by an all-powerful Gay lobby.

    “Those that continue to believe this should, a) speak for themselves, and, b) be aware that there will be plenty of websites catering for that sort of fantasy.”

    I don’t recall anyone claiming to speak for anyone else. And what Gays do in the privacy of their own homes ought to be up to them. But by the same token what the rest of us do in the privacy of our own minds ought to be our business and the SJWs should butt out. So to speak.

  57. That therapy can change sexual orientation. Unlikely, to be honest. Well, actually, human sexuality is sufficiently complex that we can find examples of absolutely anything in it. So, obviously, yes, there’s some people who before speaking to the trick cyclist who would fancy blokes and afterwards women. But a pityably small portion of the population methinks.

    The proportion of the population that identifies as Gay is probably about the same size as the proportion that identifies as bisexual. Although both are so small it hardly matters. The proportion of the population that tried sex with other men and did not like it is vastly larger. How vastly larger depends on what figures you believe, but let’s say eight to ten times larger.

    So most Gay-ish people change their orientation on their own. Therefore there is absolutely no reason to think a bit of therapy can’t help. Which is precisely why the Gay lobby is so opposed to such therapy. It might work. They feel threatened as sex with other men is so important to them and someone might come along and persuade them otherwise. Like convincing one of us we are French.

  58. I am inclined to agree with SMFS here again. The Gay/SJW lobby’s demand that this therapy be prohibited is not from fear that it is harmful but from fear that it may work. But also, they are desperate to delegitimise any desire within a gay person to change themself. It is not rooted in a desire for people to be whatever they want to be (a liberal or libertarian view) but the reinforcement of the idea that not wanting to be gay is unacceptable. And of course this is why Christians get so much stick, because it is central to (most) Christianity that every individual has the agency to change themself.

    It is entirely unremarkable for a person to have conflicting desires. They may desire to be slim but unable to control their urge to eat cakes. They may have a bad temper and wish they could be more calm. They may be adulterous and wish they could be faithful. And it is entirely possible that a man may have homosexual desires but wish to have an ordinary, wife and kids, heterosexual life.

    Whether therapy can help any of these things, and how much, is debatable. But to make it verboten to seek to change, or even to desire to change, is troubling indeed.

  59. Not “still true” in Portugal. Recently changed to. For centuries the Catholic Church/State had the monopoly. now, only State marriage at the town hall etc counts as “legal” marriage. Whatever the Church stuff is entirely a choice and of no legal value.

    Which, actually, isn’t all that different from the English system. Except we make the Priest into the state functionary. In legal terms, when they pop off into the registry half way through the service, that’s what they’re doing. Signing the same contract that you get at the town hall.

    An interesting implication of which is that there’s no difference in the divorce laws between a church wedding and a town hall one. For, legally, they’re the same contract.

    All we’d need to do to make the system he same as Portugal is to insist that that State approved contract must be administered by the State, not by the priest as a delegate of the State.

  60. It’s a numbers game, isn’t it? If say 20 percent of gays are born gay, die gay, and 80 percent tried it, didn’t mind it that much and quite like the lifestyle, then straitening out the 80 percent would mean there were fewer “real” gays than squirell fanciers.

  61. SMFS,

    > Which is precisely why the Gay lobby is so opposed to such therapy. It might work. They feel threatened as sex with other men is so important to them and someone might come along and persuade them otherwise.

    I don’t think that’s the reason. They painted themselves into a corner with the analogies to racism. Telling the world that gayness was something innate and unchoosable was key to persuading people that it was something that should not be discriminated against. Personally, I don’t give a damn whether someone has to be gay or chooses to be gay, but I’m not convinced that the gay lobby aren’t right that there are plenty of people out there who won’t discrimate against something unchangeable but will discriminate against something choosable.

  62. Sex outside marriage is a sin.

    Repentance is an option of course, but that does not change the above.

  63. SMFS,
    What on earth are you talking about?

    “The SJWs are insisting that it is wrong not to join their cause – mere silence is itself wrong.”

    Yes they are. And those that disagree are free to ignore them. Labour are currently insisting that it is wrong to vote Conservative, and vice versa. It’s called an argument.

    “Then let the market rip. I notice your side of the argument won’t”

    My side of the argument? There may be more of an opportunity in converting people the other way of course.

    “No, but the idea that silence is itself wrong and we must condemn whatever the SJWs insist we condemn or we are somehow morally culpable, does mean that we are, again, being bullied by an all-powerful Gay lobby.”

    All-powerful? Putin and ISIS are madder than I thought.

  64. The UK government is to give extra funding for gay rights campaigners in Russia amid growing concerns over the introduction of legislation outlawing the promotion of homosexuality.

    In an interview for the BBC, Culture Secretary Maria Miller said it was the “right thing to do”.

    Additional money will be given to protest groups such as Stonewall.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-25955930

    So, government funded “charity” attacks party standing for election against the government. Is this not rather corrupt? And this is the point really. The SJWs aren’t merely speaking as private citizens in an open debate. They are State backed to the hilt.

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