Ugandan ex-gay conference goes political: US presenter suggests law to force gays into therapy

The Ugandan anti-gay seminar now is coming into sharper focus. In this disturbing article from UGPulse, Scott Lively, invited by Family Life Network to speak at a church-based conference on homosexuality, spoke to a government conference and called for the forced therapy of homosexuals.

Here is the article in full:

The Minister of Ethics and Integrity, Dr. James Nsaba Buturo has today told a conference organized to discuss the ways to fight Homosexuality that he will soon submit a bill on pornography and homosexuality for discussion in Parliament.

The conference that took place at Parliament was organized by Defend the Family International, an organization in the United States of America that was formed to fight homosexuality.

Buturo says the he will present the bill against pornography first before presenting that against homosexuality though he declines to mention exactly when these bills will be presented to Parliament.

He says pornography is partly a cause of homosexuality since it negatively affects the morals of the victims of pornography and makes them easily susceptible to the vice of homosexuality.

He says the provision in the penal code on homosexuality is too small to cover all concerns in homosexuality.

Buturo says the government will not only end at making laws against homosexuality but will also engage in sensitizing schools and churches in the fight against this vice.

The President of Defend the Family International, Scott Lively says it is good for the government of Uganda to criminalize homosexuality but the government should subject the criminals of homosexuality to a therapy rather than imprisoning them.

Lively says this is aimed at the criminals recovering from homosexuality which is the main objective of those fighting homosexuality and not to punish homosexuals through imprisonment. He says even schools should borrow this idea of therapy in dealing with gay students.

Exodus International and the International Healing Foundation must now come out clearly and make a statement condemning this proposal. This is a chilling development and one which must be addressed. The presence of these ex-gay organizations in this environment most likely sends a message to the Ugandan people and government that such forced “therapy” is plausible and humane. Cell phones and other modern forms of communication exist. If I were Alan Chambers and Richard Cohen, I would be on the phone yesterday to insist that their representatives make public statements distancing themselves from Mr. Lively’s views. And they should come home early.

  • http://www.collegejay.blogspot.com Jay

    That any American — no matter what their religious background — would promote the criminalization of a private act between consenting adults is just wretched. Exodus really has no choice in this matter. They absolutely must speak out against this if they want to have any shred of dignity or credibility left (it’s too late for Cohen).

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  • Lynn David

    Dang… your site at my post.

    .

    Do Schmeirer and Brundidge open themselves to any prosecution, say in the World Court, if after this conference Uganda

    .

    More blogging on the conference by Victor Makusa for the IGLHRC:

    http://iglhrc.wordpress.com/2009/03/06/%e2%80%98healing%e2%80%99-by-harming/

    .

    Lots of talk about poor family dynamics and absent/poor fathering. A film with ex-gay happily being supposedly “normal.” And Brundidge saying his own bad relationship caused his homosexuality. “First he [Brundidge] testified that he didn’t have a good relationship with his father. Later, when a participant noted that there are a lot of homosexuals that she knows that come from great families and have good relationships with their parents, Caleb interjected and said that he had a great relationship with his father. That was contradictory!

    .

    Lies, damn lies, and fictions.

  • Lynn David

    Cannot complete a thought without flitting off to another….

    .

    Do Schmeirer and Brundidge open themselves to any prosecution, say in the World Court, if this conference begats an anti-gay pogrom in Uganda?

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  • Jayhuck

    Oh Lynn – if Exodus and other so-called Ex-gay ministries don’t speak out against this they shoot themselves in the foot again – its interesting to watch and be offended by

  • Regan DuCasse

    Dr. Throckmorton,

    We are very few years removed from Lawrence vs. Brown. Young teens are forced into ex gay camps, or parents verge themselves on abuse of their gay children with the complicity of churches and schools.

    Why should Lively, or Randy Thomas care what you think? And the public at large is willing to commit to discriminatory public policies against gay people as long as they THINK and are encouraged to believe that homosexuality is mutable.

    Something which you do not deny.

    How is the public at large supposed or cares about the difference?

    Why would they care as long as ads and public announcements still call gay people threatening and not to be trusted?

    Being ex gay yourself, and supportive of it, gives credence to heterosexuals who are the powerful majority in this country that THEIR actions against gay people are correct and desirable.

    How gay people feel is obviously of no consequence. What happens to them isn’t either.

    So, in Uganda, there is very fertile ground for seeding serious human rights abuses (as if there haven’t been enough already). And this conference will embolden this situation to manifest here in the US as policy as well.

    I live in CA. I just watched our Supreme Court hear arguments to let Prop. 8 stand.

    It shouldn’t have been a matter of popular public vote in the first place. And Kenneth Starr had the gall to say the power of the people shouldn’t be dismissed regardless of how ‘unwise’ their decisions.

    We are in a serious economic downturn. People are insecure, worried and without answers to their situation. They cannot trust the captains of industry, nor those who govern their lives. One can easily interject schemes in which dangerous witch hunting and scapegoating will occur.

    You never had to live in dangerous situations you were willing to be open and honest in about your identity. Like being Jewish or black in a Jim Crow state.

    Declaring one’s identity as ex gay or post gay is dangerous to those who remain gay.

    It simply exacerbates public confusion and gives no ability for gay people to have an honest and open ability to participate in laws or standards that govern their lives.

    You have NO CREDIBILITY in calling for the protection of gay people. None, zip, nothing.

    You have NO CREDIBILITY in the need for the elimination of discriminatory policies with regard to gay people.

    In a word, you are worthless, if not dangerous to that which creates an environment in which gay people can ever be considered equal partners in everyone’s social destiny.

    If you ever had listened to what people have said prior to, or after anti marriage equality laws have been passed a common complaint and one that fueled denial of such rights was that gay people can change. Marry the opposite sex if they want to, so therefore have a choice in whether or not they will participate in being married.

    Your beliefs go a long way simply because people being openly gay is still a tough and sometimes dangerous position to be in.

    In Uganda, it will be deadly, if not criminal. A subject for torturing innocent people.

    What you could possibly say in defense of gay Ugandans is also worthless, because those in leadership believe, just more fervently than you do, in the same thing. And they want to MAKE SURE, that each and every gay person there knows who is in charge and what their lives as gay people means. Which is nothing.

    And that’s all the matters to them.

  • Ann

    Being ex gay yourself, and supportive of it, gives credence to heterosexuals who are the powerful majority in this country that THEIR actions against gay people are correct and desirable.

    Regan DuCasse,

    Are you inferring that Dr. Throckmorton is ex gay?

  • Mary

    Declaring one’s identity as ex gay or post gay is dangerous to those who remain gay.

    Sooooo…. minority people should remain silent to protect a majority group? Should we cower in the corner or demand fairness for everyone?

  • Jayhuck

    This is unconscionable – does anyone know if Exodus has made a formal statement denouncing this yet?

  • Jayhuck

    If a group such as Exodus, who purports to be loving and caring – who purports to be an organization of Christians is willing to let so much time elapse without speaking out on this issue, they have lost any shred of credibility they might have had. Its time for good people everywhere to demand they speak out against this – the fact that it takes a public outcry to get them to do what they should do WITHOUT prodding … they should be so ashamed of themselves!

  • Lynn David

    Exodus perhaps should have gotten rid of Schmierer before this incident. According to his LinkedIn profile Don Schmierer is a “Program Officer” at Fieldstead & Company.

    According to their website, “Fieldstead is a private company that manages the assets of the Howard F. Ahmanson, Jr. family. Among other things, one of the functions of Fieldstead & Company is to help manage the family’s various philanthropic programs as part of a Christian worldview.

    Ahmanson was a lifelong associate of R. J. Rushdoony and served on the board of the Chalcedon Foundation as well as supporting it financially. Together Rushdoony and Ahmanson have given new impetus to the modern Christian Reconstructionist or Dominionist movement. Ahmanson has appeared to ameliorate his own ultra-right wing views when even some republicans returned his donations to their campaigns. Ahmanson is reported to have never been for the death penalty for homosexuals like Rushdoony but he’s probably not far from it. And Fieldstead is reported to have given just shy of $1 million to the “Yes on (H)8″ campaign. See Wikipedia for the biblography on these assertions.

    If not before it is rather obvious now that Exodus is completely at odds with letting gay peoples live with any sense of dignity whether that be in Africa or the United States. There is this man Schmeirer on their board, who represents those who would create laws like that of Uganda and worse here in America, Chambers has spoken at “Value Voters” gatherings against us, and they all speak lies about laws such as ENDA. It’s time to take the gloves off, we’re in a fight that we must win for our ourselves and those who follow us.

  • http://www.collegejay.blogspot.com Jay

    Being ex gay yourself, and supportive of it, gives credence to heterosexuals who are the powerful majority in this country that THEIR actions against gay people are correct and desirable.

    That’s ridiculous, Regan. I should get to live my life as I see fit. The only way bigots get to use my life as a weapon is if I let them, and I never do. Are you basically asking that ex-gays hide their beliefs and be silent? Well, I refuse. No human being should live life that way. I will live my life openly and I will also speak out against the horrible things that are being supported in Uganda. Try and stop me, dear.

    And don’t you dare call me worthless.

  • http://www.wthrockmorton.com Warren

    Regan – What Jay said.

    And that was your one shot to disparage people. Either abide by the commenting guidelines or take it somewhere else.

  • Jayhuck

    Jay,

    I wholeheartedly agree with you, but there is a smidgeon of truth to what Regan says. Many ex-gays and the organizations that support them use their message to suggest that gay people don’t deserve equal rights – if they can “change”, why give them rights – and some straight people lock onto such a message. It can be powerful!

    BUT – you are absolutely right – you, I and everyone else in this country, and in others, have the right to live our lives as we see fit within the eyes of the law and according to our values! :) I hope you are doing well btw!!!

  • Jayhuck

    Go Lynn! :)

    It’s time to take the gloves off, we’re in a fight that we must win for our ourselves and those who follow us.

  • http://aebrain.blogspot.com Zoe Brain

    Exodus International and the International Healing Foundation must now come out clearly and make a statement condemning this proposal.

    Dear Dr Throckmorton- why on Earth would they do such a thing?

    I agree that for the most part, people are far better than we give them credit for. It’s all too easy to Demonise people we disagree with.

    But there comes a time when you have to face facts. That these particular opponents are not misled, not ignorant, not showing goodwill, and not even “having their hands tied by a few extremists in their organisation”. It’s the people who aren’t hypocrites that are on the fringe, and that provide cover for the rest.

    I think you’ll be waiting for a long time. Please draw the requisite conclusions in future dealings. Don’t let the matter drop, don’t give them a pass on this one. Please.

    You know, even I hope I’m wrong? I don’t want to believe it myself. I know there are many good people in those organisations who are horrified by this. But the evidence is compelling that they’re not just a minority, but a tiny one. Please tell me in all sincerity that I’m wrong.

  • Ann

    but there is a smidgeon of truth to what Regan says. Many ex-gays and the organizations that support them use their message to suggest that gay people don’t deserve equal rights –

    One of the flaws in her argument is that she directed it in a hostile way to someone who does not fit her accusations – Dr. Throckmorton. How uncool is that?

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  • Michael Bussee

    Exodus International and the International Healing Foundation must now come out clearly and make a statement condemning this proposal.

    Well, Alan? What are you waiting for?:

  • David Blakeslee

    Is Exodus’ access to these political leaders due to their Christian faith?

    If so, can Exodus and others articulate an argument for “Christian Governtment” that includes tolerance and non-coerciveness?

    We all support: “thou shalt not steal.”

    But it is hard to put into law, “thou shalt not covet.”

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