Dr. Linda on Dr. Laura

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Linda S. Mintle, Ph.D.

Dr. Laura, the well-known radio talk-show host who ends her daily program by saying, “Now go take on the day,” may have to change her directive to “Go take on the gay”–gay activists, that is! Dr. Laura was recently the target of an all-out attack by gay activists.

Her offense against the gay community was that she dared to voice her personal belief that homosexuality is a “biological error” and “deviant.” She emphatically stated that she doesn’t hate gays and supports the idea of reparative therapy for those who want to change their sexuality.

But she also declared, “I always told people who opposed homosexuality that they were homophobic, bad, bigoted and idiotic. I was wrong. It is destructive.”

Since those re- marks were spoken, gay activists, fueled by the mental health community, have responded with a vengeance. The May 29 issue of Broadcasting and Cable had a full-page ad slamming Dr. Laura with the intent to scare advertisers away from her new TV show. The National Mental Health Association, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance, People for the American Way, The National Conference for Community and Justice, and The National Organization for Women were sponsors.

The March issue of the NASW (National Association of Social Workers) News–the source that informs social workers about developments in professional practice–printed an article that says the NASW opposes the use of reparative and conversion therapies with gay and lesbian clients.

Reparative therapy, particularly the Christian variety, tries to help gays develop “healthy, non-sexual, same-sex relationships” and abstain from homosexual activity.

NASW referenced recent studies “that indicate these types of therapies are ineffective and damaging to clients.” However, no actual references were provided.

At the February meeting of the Council of Representatives of the American Psychological Association (APA), guidelines for psychotherapy with gay, lesbian and bisexual people were adopted. Reparative therapy was strongly discouraged.

A panel discussion on gay therapy scheduled for the May APA convention was cancelled. Ironically, Dr. Robert Spitzer, who was instrumental in removing homosexuality from the list of mental disorders in 1973, organized the debate. Spitzer, a psychiatry professor at Columbia University, wanted the APA to debate the subject of whether or not gays can change their sexual orientation.

According to a May 18 report in the Chicago Tribune, Spitzer is impartial on the subject and wants science vs. opinion to guide the debate. He believes anecdotal records of people’s conversions need to be documented scientifically.

There is no evidence saying conversion can’t happen. In fact, Spitzer’s pilot study supports the idea that change is possible for some people. The fact that the scientific community is too frightened to debate the subject speaks to the power of gay politics.

Apparently gay activists have redefined tolerance to include politically correct bigotry against anyone who holds religious truths as sacred. They can’t tolerate Dr. Laura’s opinion because it doesn’t line up with theirs. So they mount an all-out campaign against her new fall TV show and redefine speaking out about a religious view as bigotry.

You should be concerned. This is about more than Dr. Laura. It’s about having a religious belief redefined as something discriminatory. It’s about political correctness taken to new heights of censoring not only speech, but also the way people believe. And it’s about dictating what the mental health community can and cannot do with someone who requests reparative therapy based on his or her religious beliefs. When psychologists won’t even debate homosexuality because of fear of retribution, something is wrong.

I once thought persecution for stating religious beliefs was reserved for overseas martyrs. After Dr. Laura’s treatment in the media, I’m not so sure.

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