Jonathon Van Maren
The last time I wrote about Jonathon Van Maren, an anti-choice zealot, he was off the rails on some crazy gay conspiracy theory

If all of the writers at LifeSiteNews got together as bulbs in a chandelier, they could not compete with the luminescence of my cell phone screen. One of those scribblers, Jonathon Van Maren, offers: Latest example of how gay ‘marriage’ affects you: Banning books. I stopped being offended by this crap when I realized that the incoherence was entertaining.

Jonathon Van Maren builds up a head of steam. By the time he is done Van Maren will claim that the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges has resulted in books being banned.

In 2010, a documentary titled 8: The Mormon Proposition was released, purporting to expose the Mormon cash and activism behind the ultimately successful Proposition 8, … The scene in that documentary that I have been constantly reminded of since then was an interview with a gay rights activist, who highlighted the claims of those who oppose gay “marriage” that religious liberty would be restricted, that parental rights would be under threat, and that LGBT material would be added to school curriculums. These people are lying, and they know they’re lying. This is utterly false, the activist assured the interviewer with righteous indignation.

That is an editorial (rather than factual) description of the scene. And, by the way, the plural of curriculum is curricula (not “curriculums”). National Organization for Marriage and the Knights of Columbus funded an ad in which a young girl brings home a book called King & King. “Mom, guess what I learned in school today,” she says in the ad. “I learned how a prince married a prince, and I can marry a princess!”

That depiction was, in fact, a lie. There was, and continues to be, no requirement for California public schools to address the issue of marriage equality. Jack O’Connell, California’s superintendent of schools said at the time that “the ‘Yes on Proposition 8’ ads that I have seen are misleading, inaccurate and they are really irrelevant.” O’Connell’s statement was entirely true. But there is more.

At around the same time, first-graders in San Francisco attended the same-sex wedding of their teacher. Supporters of Proposition 8 claimed that this was proof that gay marriage would be taught in schools. That, too, was a lie. The trip was optional and it was organized by parents — not the school.

Returning to Mr. Van Maren:

California has been on the cutting edge of legislating the sexual revolution for some time, but nothing has been quite as terrifying as the passage of Bill 2943 through the California State Assembly last week. I don’t want to appear as if I’m simply fear-mongering, so after wading through quite a bit of analysis on this legislation, I’ll quote here frocriminalizingm the always even-handed National Review columnist David French, who also happens to be a lawyer. His summary of the situation is, quite frankly, chilling.

What the fuck does that nonsense have to do with marriage equality? French claimed that AB2943, banning conversion therapy, is so broad that it could ban books. That craziness became Bible banning from the usual coterie of Christian zealots.

Snopes debunked this (I think more than once). As they noted:

Anthony Samson, a Sacramento attorney and policy advisor told us by email that the bill would prohibit conversion therapy “as a commercial service in exchange for monetary compensation,” adding: that “It does not apply to the sale of books or any other kind of goods, and it does not prevent anyone from speaking or writing on the subject of conversion therapy in any forum.”

That is pretty much what I wrote on April 19 at greater length. Keep in mind that Mr. French has, at times, been associated with Alliance Defending Freedom, an anti-LGBT hate group so he is hardly, as Van Maren claims, “even-handed.”

Van Maren gets a partial pass. In truth, the right wing echo chamber has totally drowned out any rational dialog. So even if he does have some intellectual curiosity, balance is hard to find. Nevertheless, Van Maren writes:

Essentially, California lawmakers are criminalizing any Christian response to same-sex attraction – even if the man or woman experiencing that attraction does not desire it. While other North American jurisdictions have already made similar moves, it is important to note that California’s legislation may end up serving as the canary in the coal mine, because it is far more radical than anything we have seen so far, and far more restrictive.

The above is all premised on the false idea that conversion therapy works and is not harmful. It does not work and it is harmful. The Christian response to homosexuality is to shame people into pretending to be straight. The Catholic response is to shame people and then preposterously treat sexual orientation like a bad habit and submit subjects to a 12-step program.

Under AB2943 the Church and those Calvinists are free to continue to shame people as long as it is not a commercial service where money changes hands. Just a reminder that the title of Van Maren’s opus is “Latest example of how gay ‘marriage’ affects you: Banning books.” I still do not see any connection between marriage equality and AB2943. Banning conversion therapy has nothing to do with marriage.

Van Maren tries to tie the two things together:

If Christians had warned, before the Supreme Court imposed same-sex “marriage” on all fifty states, that progressives would begin to use that victory to push for the banning of books, those Christians would have been mocked and ridiculed as hateful fear-mongers. Same-sex “marriage” won’t impact you at all, Christians were told. Just live and let live. And now they’re trying to ban the sale of some books they disagree with.

One more time: AB2943 does not ban books! There is no connection between Obergefell and California’s proposed ban of conversion therapy. None. Mr. Van Maren’s assumptions don’t make it true. Marriage and conversion therapy are not related to each other in any way whatsoever.

This all comes crashing down to this:

We should be watching the developments in California and the reaction of LGBT activists to this latest legislation very closely. I genuinely do think this law will serve as a canary in the coal mine, and one that activists in other jurisdictions will try to push for if they think they can get it passed and that it will stand up to a court challenge (it shouldn’t, but who knows?).

Shutting down bakeries was bad enough. Banning books – that’s a whole new reality.

These folks are genetically predisposed to relishing their own invented persecution. Books will be banned! The Bible will be banned! Christianity will be criminalized! It’s all true Mr. Van Maren. Perhaps you should relocate to the Russian Federation. Moscow’s weather sucks but you won’t have to worry about those pernicious activists who seem to outnumber Christian warriors.

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.