What makes this particularly disgraceful is that these sanctimonious people are telling lies while, at the same time, holding themselves out as holders of moral authority.

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There is no title on a dishonest treatise attributed to Charlene Aaron — CBN News. The meta-title (the text that appears at the top of your browser) reads: “California Lawmakers Pass Measure Forcing Pastors to Embrace LGBT Ideology.” That is a lie. It continues a la pants-on-fire:

The California State Assembly has passed a resolution telling pastors to affirm homosexuality in violation of their biblical beliefs.

Assemblyman Evan Low and three dozen other lawmakers pushed the resolution in the state Assembly Judiciary Committee that’s aimed at telling religious leaders in California what they should preach from their pulpits.

“Forcing” gave way to “telling” in the above quote but the intent is clear. Ms. Aaron wants people to falsely believe that California has a new law requiring clergy to do something against Christianit teaching. That is entirely incorrect. Personally I have lost whatever belief I might have ever had that the religious right was acting in good faith.

What Ms. Aaron is referring to is California Assembly Concurrent Resolution 99. It is clearly a nonbinding resolution. It has not been passed by both houses of the legislature and it has not been signed into law. It is not public policy. There is no ambiguity. There is no possible room for a misunderstanding. Claiming that ACR-99 “forces” anyone to do anything is an outright lie. The resolution encourages religious leaders and others to abandon the promotion of conversion therapy. The tone is respectful. It concludes:

Resolved, That in addressing the stigma often associated with persons who identify as LGBTQ, we call on the people of California–especially its counselors, pastors, religious workers, educators, and legislators–and the institutions of California with great moral influence–especially its churches, universities, colleges, and other schools, counseling centers, activist groups, and religious centers–to model equitable treatment of all people of the state; and be it further

Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.

Conversion therapy is a lie and fanatical Christians are defending the lie with more lies.

  • The claim that conversion therapy works is a lie.
  • Using the above lie to claim that sexual orientation and gender identity are not immutable is a lie.
  • The notion that a nonbinding resolution “forces” pastors to do something is a lie.
  • The notion that pastors are obligated to “embrace LGBT ideology” is a lie. Even if the resolution instituted public policy — it does not — not promoting conversion therapy is not the same thing as requiring a change of religious beliefs.
  • The idea that sexual orientation and gender identity are a philosophy, doctrine or “ideology” is a lie.
  • The assertion that the state is “telling pastors to affirm homosexuality in violation of their biblical beliefs” is a lie. For example, California bans juvenile conversion therapy. Pastors are not required by that action to “affirm” anything.
  • The claim that the state is “telling religious leaders in California what they should preach from their pulpits” is a lie. Pastors can preach anything they like. Under current law they can even preach that kids should pray their gay away. In fact, the current ban on juvenile conversion therapy (SB 1172, 2012) does not apply to pastors. They are free to screw up kids.

It is not just Charlene Aaron who is responsible. The “good” Christian zealots have been spreading this bullshit ever since the resolution passed.

Enter Mad Mat Staver:

Just a reminder that Staver’s Liberty Counsel is a rabid hate group. Ms. Aaron continues:

The measure passed this week, thanks in part to the help of Dr. Kevin Mannoia, Azusa Pacific University chaplain and the former head of the National Association of Evangelicals.

Liberty Counsel says Mannoia “has become a prop for the LGBT agenda by directing pastors and counselors to reject biblical views of sexuality and deny counseling for those struggling with unwanted same-sex attraction or gender confusion.”

More lies. Calling gender dysphoria “gender confusion” is a deliberate lie. More importantly, encouraging pastors not to promote an ineffective and harmful practice is not “to reject biblical views of sexuality.” The biblical view is not dependent on conversion therapy. That’s just one more lie.

The last paragraph of this thing is truly amazing:

“It’s really disappointing that he would put aside the truth of the matter just to gain some favor, perhaps a seat at the table of this discussion,” said Roger Gannam, vice president of legal affairs for Liberty Counsel. “Everyone deserves respect in this discussion and dialogue about what kind of counseling should be allowed in California. But to join in a document as Dr. Mannoia has done, that really slanders the church and slanders good counselors and good patients. It’s unexplainable and it’s really inexcusable.

Gannam has the temerity to appeal to “the truth of the matter” after all of the lies that he, his organization and his entire orbit have told. What? Those fibs don’t count? And what, exactly is the truth of the matter?

What Gannam really means is that “everyone deserves respect” if they agree with my radical, fundamentalist Christian beliefs. The very idea that Liberty Counsel or Gannam would show respect to LGBTQ people and their views on conversion therapy is just one more lie in addition to all the rest.

There is no closed quote in the last sentence of the above. Gannam is not just crazy. Roger Gannam is a crazy liar. Urging pastors not to promote conversion therapy does not “slander” anyone. An observant Christian (Kevin Mannoia) who does not support conversion therapy is not slandering anyone. Accusing ideological opponents of slander is showing respect?

Slander usually refers to oral defamation. The overwhelming consensus of medical science is that conversion therapy is ineffective and harmful. Recognizing that medical science is probably correct does not slander anyone. Claiming that the church, “good counselors” and “good patients” have been slandered is just one more lie.

What makes this particularly disgraceful is that these sanctimonious people are telling lies while, at the same time, holding themselves out as holders of moral authority. But there is more to the deceit and the sociopathy. These people are willing to sacrifice fellow humans to an intervention that they probably know is harmful in order to advance an agenda of discrimination.

This is particularly true with efforts to change gender identity which would be necessary to realign gender and natal sex. It cannot be done and it puts people at grave danger for suicide. These good Christians are bound to kill someone if they haven’t done so already.

As the old Civil Rights slogan goes: “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.” Another old saying is TGIF. The Bigot Brigade has worn me out.

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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.