If the law does: Then it’s a bad law, a law that violates natural human rights to freedom of association and to freely-chosen work. It is not good for gays; picture a gay photographer being required by law to serve the wedding of some social conservative whom he or she despises.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a Republican…said that homosexuality is inborn and not a sin…as he signed a bill banning therapy that tries to change a minor’s sexual orientation. Christie said such efforts pose “critical health risks including, but not limited to, depression, substance abuse, social withdrawal, decreased self-esteem and suicidal thoughts.”
“Exposing children to these health risks without clear evidence of benefits that outweigh these serious risks is not appropriate,” Christie, 50, said today in the statement.
The question is whether this is an entirely good thing.
I love it (don’t we all!) that Christie told his constituents the truth about New Jersey’s budget mess, which he inherited from Wall Street rip-off artist and Democrat, Jon Corzine. But some of Christie’s other positions suggest a Big Government, authoritarian streak in him. Perhaps this is one.
Low as my opinion of reparative therapy is, some people (probably a small minority, when we’re talking about men) can change their orientation if they want to, and none of us have the moral right to stop them from getting assistance.
Minors do need a higher standard of protection, but that’s why they have parents. So, either way, I’m not sure this should be Chris Christie’s (or government’s) decision.
At the very least, the “age of consent” for gay sex and reparative therapy ought to be the same. A teenager who is viewed legally as old enough to make his own decisions about sex, should be old enough to make his own decisions about what therapy he may want.
UPDATE: Apologies to Kurt for ‘topping’ his excellent post; I wrote this one in a hurry, without checking the blog first as I should have. Having said that, the issue I’m raising here is the liberty of the one who (rightly or wrongly) may seek reparative therapy. The individual has a right to pursue the life she thinks is best, even when Chris Christie (or gay activists, or anyone else) thinks it’s a mistake.