May 21st, 2012
Last Saturday, the New York Times published an important cover story by Benedict Carey which, more or less, covers the same ground Gabriel Arana covered in April is his interview with Robert Spitzer, whose 2001 ex-gay study purported to show that some people can change their sexual orientation with a great deal of effort. During that interview, Spitzer acknowledged that critics of his study were ” largely correct.” Spitzer then decided to retract his study and issue an apology to the gay community and also “to any gay person who wasted time and energy undergoing some form of reparative therapy because they believed that I had proven that reparative therapy works with some ‘highly motivated’ individuals.”
Carey’s piece with the New York Times doesn’t cover much new territory, although there was one revelation surprised me: “The paper did not go through the usual peer-review process, in which unnamed experts critique a manuscript before publication.” I did not know that. Of course, what I did know what that when the paper appeared in 2003 in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, editor Kenneth Zucker took the highly unusual step of publishing 26 “peer commentaries,” from all sides of the debate. Many professionals either denounced or criticized the study’s methodology and conclusions, while others (mostly ex-gay therapists and supporters like A. Dean Byrd, Joseph Nicolosi, Mark Yarhouse) hailed it as ” giv(ing) a voice to the disenfranchised within a minority group.”
But what is important in the Times story is the fact that Aranal’s article at The American Prospect has caught the attention of the wider mainstream media. Today, Spitzer appeared on NPR’s Talk of the Nation, followed by Arana and Carey to discuss the study, its retractions, Spitzer’s apology, and the legacy of ex-gay therapy.
In this original BTB Investigation, we unveil the tragic story of Kirk Murphy, a four-year-old boy who was treated for “cross-gender disturbance” in 1970 by a young grad student by the name of George Rekers. This story is a stark reminder that there are severe and damaging consequences when therapists try to ensure that boys will be boys.
When we first reported on three American anti-gay activists traveling to Kampala for a three-day conference, we had no idea that it would be the first report of a long string of events leading to a proposal to institute the death penalty for LGBT people. But that is exactly what happened. In this report, we review our collection of more than 500 posts to tell the story of one nation’s embrace of hatred toward gay people. This report will be updated continuously as events continue to unfold. Check here for the latest updates.
In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that “[Paul] Cameron’s ‘science’ echoes Nazi Germany.” What the SPLC didn”t know was Cameron doesn’t just “echo” Nazi Germany. He quoted extensively from one of the Final Solution’s architects. This puts his fascination with quarantines, mandatory tattoos, and extermination being a “plausible idea” in a whole new and deeply disturbing light.
On February 10, I attended an all-day “Love Won Out” ex-gay conference in Phoenix, put on by Focus on the Family and Exodus International. In this series of reports, I talk about what I learned there: the people who go to these conferences, the things that they hear, and what this all means for them, their families and for the rest of us.
Prologue: Why I Went To “Love Won Out”
Part 1: What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Part 2: Parents Struggle With “No Exceptions”
Part 3: A Whole New Dialect
Part 4: It Depends On How The Meaning of the Word "Change" Changes
Part 5: A Candid Explanation For "Change"
Using the same research methods employed by most anti-gay political pressure groups, we examine the statistics and the case studies that dispel many of the myths about heterosexuality. Download your copy today!
And don‘t miss our companion report, How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps.
Anti-gay activists often charge that gay men and women pose a threat to children. In this report, we explore the supposed connection between homosexuality and child sexual abuse, the conclusions reached by the most knowledgeable professionals in the field, and how anti-gay activists continue to ignore their findings. This has tremendous consequences, not just for gay men and women, but more importantly for the safety of all our children.
Anti-gay activists often cite the “Dutch Study” to claim that gay unions last only about 1½ years and that the these men have an average of eight additional partners per year outside of their steady relationship. In this report, we will take you step by step into the study to see whether the claims are true.
Tony Perkins’ Family Research Council submitted an Amicus Brief to the Maryland Court of Appeals as that court prepared to consider the issue of gay marriage. We examine just one small section of that brief to reveal the junk science and fraudulent claims of the Family “Research” Council.
The FBI’s annual Hate Crime Statistics aren’t as complete as they ought to be, and their report for 2004 was no exception. In fact, their most recent report has quite a few glaring holes. Holes big enough for Daniel Fetty to fall through.