Love Needs No Cure

[This is a letter I wrote to the Post-Dispatch last week. I don’t think they’re going to print it, so I offer it here. What it’s about is a fundamentalist Christian “therapy” {you can’t help but use a lot of sarcastic quotes when you write about this} that supposedly can turn gay people straight. A conference promoting this “therapy” is coming to St. Louis this weekend. For a lot of good information about this anti-gay movement, click here and especially here. **If you are in the area and would like to come to an affirming response to the conference, click here.]

The “ex-gay” movement described in several recent articles is a parody of both spirituality and social science. It is unethical and cruel to use bad science to prey on people who are truly suffering. The suffering is caused not by the “disease” of being gay or lesbian, but by the homophobia of religious fundamentalism. Therapy to “cure” homosexuality doesn’t work, because there is no disease to cure. There are only people feeling pain and fear, hoping somehow to avoid being rejected by their families and communities—not to mention the threat of eternal damnation. Many Christian denominations deny that being a gay or lesbian person in a loving relationship is a sin. I will leave that argument to my Christian colleagues, but being forced by fear to live a lie and to deny love must be hell on Earth.