California’s state assembly recently passed legislation that would amend consumer law to classify “conversion therapy” to overcome unwanted same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria as a fraudulent business activity.
Nationwide, “LGBT” activists have secured laws that bar so-called conversion therapy in nine states and 34 cities and counties. Most of these laws prohibit the provision of these services for minors, and some provide exemptions for pastoral counseling, but not for licensed therapists.
Although these efforts attempt to control practices that exploit the vulnerable and fuel discrimination, vague, overly broad language often plagues the legislation.
The message seems clear: No one is allowed to talk about same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria unless they want to retain these feelings. Such laws are about stopping specific conversations between therapists and patients — a radically intrusive violation of free speech.
Never mind the fact that gender dysphoria is a proven mental illness that requires treatment to cure, not surgery to mutilate the body.
The California measure has the potential to take this First Amendment intrusion a step further, reports the NC Register.
After the bill passed the state assembly in April, Christian groups and religious-freedom advocates warned that the measure, Assembly Bill 2943, could lead to a ban on the sale of Bibles, particularly if they were flagged as a resource for faith-based therapists helping patients address sexual orientation or gender-identity issues.
The bill’s anti-Christ supporters have pushed back and say that fears of a statewide ban on Bibles are overblown. Many leftist “legal specialists” agree with this assessment, as they always do when morals are rolled back by Democrats.
But as the California Senate takes up the bill, constitutional experts agree that a number of thorny issues have not been addressed in the language of the bill, and they deserve much more attention than they have received thus far.
The bill prohibits “advertising, offering to engage in or engaging in sexual-orientation-change efforts with an individual.” The measure also targets efforts designed to overcome sexual “behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.”
California already bars licensed therapists from providing such services to minors. The new measure would penalize the provision of such services to adults, as well.
The most obvious problem with the bill is not in dispute. It attempts to “subvert the autonomy of consensual patient-counselor relationships,” stated Adam MacLeod, a professor of law at Faulkner University’s Thomas Goode Jones School of Law, in an essay on The Public Discourse website. “We need not speculate that the bill will have that effect. It is designed to prevent counselors and mental-health professionals from providing some services to their patients.”
The Catholic bishops of the Golden State have signaled their opposition to the measure, citing a range of concerns.
“The bill may violate the rights of adults to seek the counseling they may desire, may subject professional counselors to lawsuits and harassment, and may implicate religious speech and liberty concerns,” Ned Dolejsi, the California Catholic Conference’s executive director, told the Register.
Dolejsi expressed uncertainty about the bill’s impact on the sale of religious materials, including the Bible.
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
June 1st, 2018