Saturday, December 01, 2012

More Meddling From U. S. Politicians; More Compromising Of Citizens' Rights

מוצש"ק פר' וישלח תשע"ג
WND: Plan Promotes Protection For Pedophiles 
Congresswoman: Federalize ban on counseling to change sexual orientation

Jack Minor, November 30, 2012 

A California congresswoman wants to federalize a state law to prohibit counseling to change a person’s sexual orientation, including that of pedophiles.

Rep. Jackie Speier has introduced a resolution that calls on states to prohibit efforts to change a minor’s sexual orientation, even if the minor requests it, saying doing so is “dangerous and harmful.”

The resolution is modeled after California’s SB 1172, which passed earlier this year. The bill, which has several lawsuits pending against its implementation, has been labeled by both opponents and supporters as “banning ‘gay’ conversion therapy.”

However, the text of the legislation doesn’t specifically ban “gay” conversion therapy but, instead, prohibits attempts to change a person’s sexual orientation.

“‘Sexual orientation change efforts’ means any practices by mental health providers that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation. This includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex,” the bill says.

Speier’s resolution contains similar language saying, “It is the sense of Congress that sexual orientation and gender identity or expression change efforts directed at minors are … dangerous and harmful.” However, the term “sexual orientation” is not defined in either the California bill or Speier’s resolution. “This language is so broad and vague, it arguably could include all forms of sexual orientation including pedophilia,” said Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute. “It’s not just the orientation that is protected, the conduct associated with the orientation is protected as well.” (con't.)
Esser Agaroth (2):
Minor makes an excellent point about the ambiguity of the language of this proposed bill, ambiguity which must be addressed.

However, there are even deeper issues which are problematic about this bill, even if such ambiguity did not exist.

As a psychotherapist, I am no fan of so called "reparative therapy." I will not get into why, right now. Nonetheless, I have some very important questions about this bill.

This bill appears to cover any type of therapy, with one particular goal in mind, sexual orientation change. Why is this decision being put into the hands of politicians, and not the professionals?

As a professional, it will not matter if you are left-wing, right-wing, religious, secular, or somewhere in between. If this bill passes, your professional judgment will be compromised; your professional discretion will be taken out of your hands.

And, what about the patient?

Just for the sake of example, there are those individuals who come into therapy for reasons other than anxiety about their sexual orientation, and changing it is the farthest thing from their minds.  Such an individual may have past traumas or other difficult experiences surface, with which he wants to face and work through with the guidance of a professional therapist.

What happens if, in the course of therapy, he discovers that his homosexual feelings and behaviors might actually be manifestations, resulting from childhood  molestation?

Or perhaps he ran away from home, and to survive on the streets, entered the world of prostitution, found [even the most marginally] healthy relationships in that world which reinforced his new behaviors which were already responsible for a roof over his head and food on the table?

Doesn't this patient, entering psychotherapy, have the right to take a look at his life, and determine its course, without the interference from the government?

Doesn't this patient have the right to heal from his past traumatic experiences and other difficulties, without the government dictating to his mental health professional how to do that?

The bottom lines here are twofold:
1) The rights of a patients receiving psychotherapy will be compromised if this bill is passed.

2) The rights, and professional standards, mental health practitioners will be compromised if this bill is passed.
 This bill is just another sneaky example of how the U. S. and other governments want to tell its constituents what and how to think and believe, and not the other way around, as it should be.

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