Uganda’s strange ex-gay conference

I decided to post about this after reading an article about an upcoming (this weekend) conference in Uganda on homosexuality. The article begins:

Parents to train on how to handle homosexuality issues

Family Life Network and other stakeholders in Uganda have organized a three-day seminar to provide what they termed as reliable and up to date information so that people can know how to protect themselves, their children, families from homosexuality.

Reliable and up-to-date information? I doubt it given line-up of presenters (Scott Lively, Don Schmierer and Caleb Brundidge). I have little awareness of Mr. Lively’s work but Mr. Schmeirer and Mr. Brundidge I know more about.

It is ironic that Mr. Schmierer is speaking at a conference for parents. He recently spoke on Family Life Radio which prompted several parents to contact me – not with good feelings, I might add. Some parents who have been through the reparative therapy gauntlet are weary of programming they seek for spiritual support providing misleading information which serves to demoralize them. An portion of Mr. Schmierer’s book, An Ounce of Prevention was provided to parents to help them pick out their pre-gay child.

Signs That an Adolescent May Be Struggling with Gender Issues

Don Schmierer

None of these are clear-cut indications of homosexual tendencies. However, if several of them are evident, the young person may be struggling with gender issues.

1. A sensitive child being forced to feel different because of mocking or downgrading by peers or family

2. A young boy who hangs out with girls exclusively; history of playing with girls instead of boys prior to puberty

3. Effeminate behavior/appearance in boys or extreme macho behavior; mannish style and “butch” posturing in girls (not to be confused with simply being athletic)

4. Unnatural friendship that is compulsive, secretive, or inseparable developing between siblings, cousins, relatives, or neighbors—especially in merged families or foster families

5. Exaggerated rejection by same sex parent

6. Fatherless home or emotionally unavailable father

7. Dominant mother

8. Youngest male child

9. Young girls with much older female “best friend” in a relationship that excludes others of the girl’s own age

10. Anger—often manifested in sarcasm, cynicism, or withdrawal

11. Frail, deformed, deaf, or otherwise “outcast”; physical appearance not socially acceptable; “slow”

12. Comments, “I must be gay,” or “I guess I’m bisexual.”

13. Loner, preoccupied with self

14. Boys may avoid fights/physical altercations

I don’t know where to start with this list. More to the point, I don’t know what a parent would do with a list like this. Take number 3: “Ok, son, time to tone down the machismo, you might be gay.” or “Son, how about being a little more macho, you might be gay.” I am trying to imagine how this list will go over in Uganda.

Mr. Brundidge, I featured here in the post just prior to this one. He divides his time between fringe groups – Extreme Prophetic and the International Healing Foundation. Here is another YouTube video of Mr. Brundidge when he was a pupil of Mr. Cohen. At least, it appears he was still a client in this video. With Mr. Cohen, you can be a client and staffer so maybe he was both. Embedding is disabled so you have to watch to about a minute into the video to see Mr. Brundidge and then again at 18:31. I wonder if he will demonstrate the tennis raquet technique in Uganda.

BrundidgeRaquet

Overall, I am surprised that an Exodus board member would go to a conference like this in a country where criminalization of homosexuality is still an issue. My impression is that Exodus had no position on such things or if there was a position it was that homosexuality should not be considered a crime. For a change, I agree with Exgaywatch that it sends the wrong message for these people to go where the agenda is not simply congruence with religious teaching but also on state intervention in private behavior.

PS – Here is an article describing some of the attitudes in Uganda. This conference will be aiding and abetting this kind of thinking, I fear.

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  • Mary

    Well, though I have much to criticise here – at least someone who does not believe in criminalizing homosexuality is present? We can’t ostracise a region from getting “outside” perspective because they do not share ours? Disturbing as it is that an Exodus member was there and was not adamant that we do not criminalize homosexuality.

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton Warren

    I don’t know what Mr. Schmierer believes. One should not assume. I should probably check that out.

    To me, this is similar to the NARTH-Schoenewolf controversy several years ago. You have a govt which has contemplated barberic means of treating gay people and an Exodus board member being used to add credibility to the effort. While I suspect Mr. Schmierer might be oblivious to this, my hope is that he will not attend.

  • Lynn David

    After the recent election, I’m pretty sure what the politics of Exodus are. They include anything they can do to stop anything which is helpful to any out gay person – else why did Alan Chambers speak at the Value Voters gig (or similar venue) in Tampa (or thereabouts). Or more specifically, they’d be happier if every gay person were closeted. But knowing that won’t wash in America, it won’t stop them from such in Africa.

  • Lynn David

    And for the notifications…..

  • Jason P

    I am the dad of a gay son, and I can tell you that none of these fit my son. Dr. Throckmorton, like you, I wonder how this will go over in Afric a where fatherlessness must be more prevalent than here.

  • Jason P

    PS – Well, the only one that fits my son is #12, but that is kinda silly isn’t it. Of course, a kid withSSA is going to say he might be gay if he has SSA.

  • http://snarkopolitan.blogspot.com Mrs. Polly

    At least eight items on that list would apply to my brother or me, and we’re not gay!

    I’m sorry to say Christian preachers are at the forefront of persecuting Ugandan homosexuals in many ways that endanger their physical safety, including publishing names, addresses, physical descriptions, and photos. Rick Warren’s colleague, Martin Ssempa, did this. He, along with American ministers, leads “purity rallies” through the streets of Kampala that have very little to do with Christ and a lot to do with accruing power. Homosexual activists have been arrested, imprisoned, and beaten, by the Ugandan police. None of these “Christian” preachers has spoken out against this violence. Instead, they peddle hatred and fear.

    When I was a teenager, I made my first close gay friend. He was distraught over being gay, and I helpfully suggested that with therapy, he might be able to change. All I can say is that it was long ago and I was ignorant.

    He is now in a long term relationship, and happy. Another friend of mine killed himself because he couldn’t accept being gay: he didn’t want to disappoint his mother. He was an Australian, from Melbourne. His name was Rodney. He was my best friend all throughout art school. I still miss him. His mother was devastated.

    He had a few girlfriends, who were frustrated, to say the least. That’s why I ask anyone in the “treatment” of gayness, to consider whether their need to see it as treatable means they are helping people perpetuate a lie.

    I don’t believe people can choose their sexual preference, based on the people I’ve known who tried. And there are the spouses and significant others to be considered. It is not fair to them. It’s very hard on them. They should have a chance with someone who truly wants to be with them, fully, which they will never get holding on to somebody holding on to a pipe dream.

    My sister-in-law tried to fight her sexuality: she married, but it only lasted a year. Now she has been in a stable relationship for 17 years. They live a quiet, suburban life, offending nobody. They don’t tell other people how to live. What is so frightening about that?

  • Lee

    Why would Exodus go to Uganda? Lets not kid ourselves – political and social agendas aside, the ex-gay “ministry” is a proven business model. Though for reasons Warren points out, it may be increasingly on wobbly legs here in the US. Africa is an un-tapped market. They are going to a large fundamentalist church with people being pressed to pay far more than they can afford to attend, then to be manipulated into purchasing additional books and resources. In a word, the answer is Ka-Ching!

  • David Blakeslee

    I think it is fair to criminalize homosexuality, if we also criminalize infidelity, promiscuity, premarital sex and pornography viewing.

    I think it is fair…but fairly stupid.

    The “otherness” of homosexuality is an excuse for our hatred.

    Heterosexuals imagine their perfection and perfect design…then hatred is possible.

    A kind of fascism?

  • David Blakeslee

    Speaking of fascism…Scott Lively has a particular interest in this topic.

  • David Blakeslee

    The Pink Swastika (Paperback)

    by Scott Lively (Author), Kevin Abrams (Author)

    Militant Gay Propaganda Exposed, April 1, 2000

    By Darrick Evenson (Washington State, U.S.) – See all my reviews

    This review is from: Pink Swastika (Paperback)

    Gay militants are portraying all who oppose their objectives as “Nazis”. Perhaps you’ve seen a Gay Pride Parade where hundreds of pink triangles are worn or carried. Authors Lively and Abrams (an Orthodox Jew) expose the “Big Lie” that the Nazis were “Anti-Gay”. The Nazis were NOT “Anti-Gay”; they were Anti-Femme (anti-effeminate homosexual). The Pink Triangle prisoners in concentration camps were often the sex-slaves of the SS-SD; the death-camp guards who were often former members of the Brownshirts (SA); a notoriously masculine homosexual organization founded by Ernst Rohm; the notoriously open Butch Gay man who was the mentor and “du” buddy of Adolt Hitler. Indeed, the party that later became known as the “Nazi” Party was founded in a Butch Gay Bar in Munich! Lively and Abrams prove that the roots of Naxism can be found in Homo-fascism and Homo-occultism, and that the roots of the gay rights movement in America can be traced directly to the Society for Human Rights; the butch gay organization in which Rohm and other early Nazi leaders were members and founders. An excellent book that bookstores REFUSE to carry. Gay propagandists have dismissed this book as “revisionist”; although the one of the book’s authors is an Orthodox Jew, and the book confirms the Holocaust. It’s a great expose of the “Big Gay Lie” of today; that the Nazis were Anti-gay.

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton Warren

    Wow, thanks David. I had heard it was something like that but had not taken any time to look into it.

    Apparently fellow gay opponent Paul Cameron does not agree with Lively on this as noted here… Hoss sought to rehab or eliminate gays. Was he unaware of the preferences of his partners in crime?

    In any event, I do not see what it proves or means if some Nazi’s engaged in homosexual behavior.

  • Anon

    You can read more about Mr. Lively here at this blog…

  • Ann

    In any event, I do not see what it proves or means if some Nazi’s engaged in homosexual behavior.

    If they imprisoned and / or killed individuals for their homosexual behavior while engaging in the same behavior themselves without any negative consequence, isn’t that hypocritical?

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton Warren

      I would say the Nazis were hypocritical and worse, yes.

      I don’t think it is reason to oppose homosexuality, however. Apparently, Lively believes there would be some adverse reaction to homosexuals now, if we came to believe that Nazism was due in some way to people who were themselves homosexual.

      Some years ago, I was asked to be co-author of a paper with Dean Byrd and others on aggression in homosexuality. I had not written a word but was asked to lend my name to it. There were some studies that purported to find a link between aggression and homosexuality. I declined because I didn’t write it and because the premise was faulty and the data analysis faulty. I wonder if Lively thinks people will associate aggression with homosexuals, if he proves some of the perpetrators were homosexual. Weak, very weak.

  • Ann

    I wonder if Lively thinks people will associate aggression with homosexuals, if he proves some of the perpetrators were homosexual. Weak, very weak.

    Well, until he actually demonstrates this, we really don’t know but will see and it will be interesting.

    I don’t think it is reason to oppose homosexuality, however.

    I don’t either – I was responding to your comment with another thought in mind. I do understand what you are referring to though.

  • Lynn David

    Lively also wrote a work called,”Seven Steps to Recruit-Proof Your Child.” It starts of with….

    .

    Step One — Get Serious — Face the Truth – “Gays” Recruit

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/warrenthrockmorton Warren

    There is something fundamentally contradictory with that line of thinking.

    These are the same folks that complain that gays all think and say that being gay is inborn. And they complain that gays think there is a gay gene. If that was the case, what would be the point of recruiting? If you really believe in the inborn view, you do not need to recruit. Rather, you discover and support.

  • Lynn David

    I think Lively equates self-discovery and support with recruitment.

    But then they mix up the whole gay by choice/gay by psychogenic causes means up also. It’s the shotgun approach to stopping anyone that might “become” gay from doing so. Except with Lively I’ve always gotten the idea that a literal shotgun might also be in his venue.

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  • G&D of course

    I have little awareness of Mr. Lively’s work…

    You will chose to tell whoppers Warren, when you think you can get away with it.

    We warned you — on this blog — about Scott Lively.

    Several years qgo. Several times. Explicitly. We told you exactly what he was about. Google yourself and that name if you need to check.

    Others have also warned you, in no uncertain terms.

    Despite being told the blunt facts it is, of course, your right to remain ignorant (by failure or by deliberate choice). Maybe you didn’t care who Exodus was palling around with. Maybe it was just too ugly a connection to want to deal with in public. Perhaps you actually agree with them, but hate to be exposed. Maybe you were too busy to take the time to check. Who knows. One can guess your judgement skills, on the basis of your prior extended time with NARTH and PFOX and Cohen and FRC and Bennett etc etc etc, but who knows.

    Do you have an excuse for this claimed ignorance of Scott Lively? Or are you just claiming forgetfulness, despite having had the evidence firmly put before you several years ago?

    (ps We break our silence when it’s about about Nazis and You… ICYW)

  • http://www.wthrockmorton.com Warren

    Ah, grant and/or dale. It has been awhile.

    I do not have your memory (which is incredible) so without googling, I won’t dispute it. No need to, it is of little consequence. I am against this conference and believe Exodus should be too. Being reminded of Lively’s work, I do not support it. I still have not personally researched his claims and have not read his book.

    Your lovely assessment of my motives is unwelcome. Keep your comments civil or don’t make them.

  • Jayhuck

    David,

    Thank you SO much for, like so many “Christians”, lumping homosexuality in with all these other unsavory things:

    …think it is fair to criminalize homosexuality, if we also criminalize infidelity, promiscuity, premarital sex and pornography viewing

  • Jayhuck

    Ahem – for a more BALANCED view, and some good academic criticisms of The Pink Swast-ika, I’d go to Wikipedia or just do a simple Google search on the subject – you’ll find the only real proponents of said book are people with an already anti-gay agenda – GO FIGURE :)

    Here’s a small quote critical of the book:

    Erik N. Jensen regards the authors’ linkage of homosexuality and Nazism as the recurrence of a “pernicious myth”, originating in 1930s attacks on Nazism by Socialists and Communists and “long since dispelled” by “serious scholarship”.[3] Jensen sees the book as coming about in “the aftermath of an Oregon measure to repeal gay rights”.[3] Dorthe Seifert cites it as a response to increasing awareness of Nazi persecution of homosexuals.[4] Christine L. Mueller argues that the historical record does not support Abrams’ assertions.[5]

  • Jayhuck

    Erik’s book is titled: “The Pink Triangle and Political Consciousness: Gays, Lesbians, and the Memory of Nazi Persecution”

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  • Jayhuck

    Grantdale brings up some interesting points on BoxTurtle Warren!

  • Jayhuck

    David,

    Psychology, for the record, is the closest thing we have to a scientific study of human behavior. My guess is that your semi-rejection of it has a great deal more to do with your beliefs than its methods. :)

  • Jayhuck

    Mrs. Polly –

    AMEN! AMEN! So many people are so concerned about changing sexual orientation or trying to get people to “live within their values”, that they come across as caring little for those affected by such attempts – thank you for your quote:

    I don’t believe people can choose their sexual preference, based on the people I’ve known who tried. And there are the spouses and significant others to be considered. It is not fair to them. It’s very hard on them. They should have a chance with someone who truly wants to be with them, fully, which they will never get holding on to somebody holding on to a pipe dream.

  • http://www.wthrockmorton.com Warren

    jayhuck – what is interesting about them? The insinuation is that somehow I was protecting or shielding Lively from scrutiny (I think, I can’t tell for sure all the evil grant and/or dale imagine(s) about me).

    I have posted here, Crosswalk.com and on Bloggernews.net and talked very candidly with the Ugandan news source about this conference. My opinion is hardly a secret and while many gay bloggers and news sources are silent (are they shielding Lively and company?), I am writing about it. Funny way to obscure something.

    As to his claim that he informed me about Lively, all I can find are two brief, obscure references in 2006 in comments from him/them in relation to Nat Lehrman. If there is more, I am sure that he/they know about it but that is all I could find.

  • Jayhuck

    I can’t speak to the insinuations made by grantdale – they are interesting – that is only something an open discussion/debate between the two of you could clear up. He said, he said sort of thing.

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  • David Blakeslee

    A lot of bitterness out there, even when Christians do the right thing.

  • http://www.tips-Q.com David Hart

    Strange world we live in. The economy is in the crapper, homelessness is way up, our entire medical structure is crumbling and millions of kids are malnourished in OUR country. Juxtapose that to these guys going to repressive Uganda to help with their “gay problem.” Lively’s book is bigoted nonsense. The other two are – well – challenged.

    Uganda provides a locale where they can hone their borderline personality disorders.

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  • Allan

    Our self-declared and self-actualized enemies do not care that they are telling lies. Some of them actually spend countless hours engaged in trying to make anti-gay statements, writings, books, pamphlets, etc., get taken into discussions politely and nicely, using mild words and hiding their real feelings and activities behind seemingly rational and non-confrontational leading “questions” instead of making statements. They aren’t fooling anyone except their own choirs.

    Some of them just flat-out lie and hope they don’t get caught. Nothing good is coming out of Uganda, because of its completely superstitious, backward belief in all sorts of tribal nonsense. Their black nation has been colonized by greedy white christians and they don’t even know it. The christians in those countries are being used by their repressive governments just like the christians here in the U.S. have been used for the past decade-plus.

    Stupidity and superstition go hand-in-hand. Bigotry and violence against scapegoats are right behind those. Until all religions are taxed which want to play enmasse in governments, even in the U.S. we have to be careful of their ultimate goal, which is christian theocracy at the point of a gun, worldwide. Just ask them, they’ll tell you.

    These internationally deadly christian bullies are the ones being paid to recruit children to their simple-minded, anti-people harassment regime. There are entire vast organizations of them just in the U.S. (Acquire the Fire comes to mind first, but there are hundreds of them).

    They must be stopped. They are a threat to the stability of any nation they infest, just as are radical Islamists who believe in Sharia law and also call for the imprisonment and murder of gay people, to varying degrees.

    There is no difference between the Ugandan or Jamaican or Rome’s anti-gay insanity and the brand of violent anti-gay incitement being exported to the world by NARTH or AFTAH or Fred Phelps — just geography.

    Please note, I did not once use the word “homophobia”.

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