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Time to close the lab, CA

by Jeremy Hooper

It's mostly unacknowledged, and obviously not followed. But even so, California Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach) is working to remove a four-decades-old call for a gay "cure" that's still in California's Welfare and Institutions Code:

[Assembly Bill 2199's] targeted section, which was placed into law in 1967, requires the Department of Mental Health to "plan, conduct and cause to be conducted scientific research into the causes and cures of sexual deviation, including deviations conducive to sex crimes against children, and the causes and cures of homosexuality, and into methods of identifying potential sex offenders."
Keep reading: Bill would overturn mandated search for homosexuality cure [Sacramento Bee]

Well California already instituted a great cure for anti-gayness, but the state invalidated it with a new afflction known as Prop 8. Here's hoping this latest inoculation will pass and stick.

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Your thoughts

Here's the citation if anyone is interested: Cal. Welf. & Inst.Code ยง 8050

Posted by: David | Feb 22, 2010 5:16:53 PM

It's high time and past time for this!

It's interesting to see how the legislator behind ending this talks about "curing" gayness as something that's simply reprehensible and not in any way justifiable. Things have come a long way since it was first enacted. For instance, now people seeking to "cure homosexuality" have to choose their words very carefully, as the Nicolosis did in their book A Parent's Guide to Preventing Homosexuality. (Yes, these are those NARTH people.) They pitch their agenda in a niche appeal to aggrieved religious social conservatives who think a lot of society is against them, very much NOT how homo curers presented their thinking in decades past when "curing" homosexuality wasn't so obvious as anti-gay bigotry to many/most? straight people.

I remember the 1960s. Supposedly it was this great time of liberation for everybody but really it was a time of increased straight American hostility to us, at least by politicians, the criminal justice system, shrinks and the media. It's perfectly right that this legislative directive would have been enacted in 1967. We were becoming ever more visible through the 60s, and straight society didn't like it. Stonewall (along with other less well known incidents) happened when it did because we saw everyone else being perceived as eligible for equality and didn't see why that shouldn't be for us also -- and we were sick of the hostile attention from the authorities and the media and felt the need to push back. I mean, we could be busted if we touched while we danced, if you can believe that! And I have to add that WE are the backlash -- THEY have been on us and fucking us over since long before any era of relative openness. Even that "ex-gay" guy with Exodus who was featured here some days ago acknowledged that when he said that anti-gay straights basically created the gay movement.

This Californian will be interested to see who crawls out of the woodwork to try to block the recission of this legislative directive.

Posted by: Donny D. | Feb 23, 2010 7:39:00 AM

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