Factsaboutyouth.com: A critical review

Yesterday, Focus on the Family’s Citizenlink promoted a new website from the American College of Pediatrics, called Facts About Youth which purports to be 

a resource created by health professionals to provide policymakers, parents and youth with the most current medical and psychological facts about sexual development.

The website makes additional claims about the information presented.

Amid debate in the medical and mental health fields concerning the causes and proper approaches to youth with non-heterosexual attractions, Facts is a non-political, non-religious channel presenting the most current facts on the subject. Facts is committed to advancing a school environment in which all students will experience the opportunity to achieve optimal health and safety, even in the midst of differing worldviews. Facts is intended to be a resource to promote the factual and respectful discussion of these potentially divisive issues. This is a web site for and about youth and their needs.

 While there may be some useful information here, I do not agree with much of what is claimed. The essential claims are that the site is “a non-political, non-religious channel presenting the most current facts on the subject.” In fact, the presentation is one-sided with old research and reparative theory dominating the content.

Following the link “homosexuality,” one reads what seems like a fair statement regarding causes of same-sex orientation. 

Clinical and scientific research suggests that the causes of homosexuality, or same-sex attraction, are multi-factorial with environment and temperament playing the strongest roles.

If one understands environment broadly as nurture and temperament broadly as nature, then this is a pretty obvious statement about the influence of both experience and biology. However, pretty quickly you find out that on this website, the terms mean whatever reparative drive theory say they mean. More on that in a bit.

The website purports to offer current research in a non-political channel. However, the reference list on the homosexuality page negates that claim. The first two references come from the NARTH (National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality) website and are not studies but summaries of studies and the third is from NARTH board member George Rekers, published in a book by Julie Hamilton, NARTH president. Whatever one thinks of NARTH, one must concede that the organization is most certainly not impartial on the subject.

The list of additional resources is anything but current. There are 13 references listed, all but two of them were published prior to 2001. Those older references have been updated by newer work but you wouldn’t know it by reading here. The most current facts are not here, nor are they referenced here.

The references are also quite selective with four pertaining to child abuse, four relating to gender nonconformity/gender identity, one being a very dated (1993) critique of biological theories, one being a reference which actually undermines one aspect of reparative theory, one 1988 review of the link between homosexuality and mental disorders and two non-research books on the politics of homosexuality. This page alone is enough to discredit the claim that the page is current and non-political. The references are old and very selectively presented. There are no references on this page to the recent brain studies (e.g., Savic and Lindstrom, 2008), the brain scan work of Safron, et al, Wilson and Widom’s prospective child abuse study, Andrew Francis’s 2008 study of family factors and sexuality, findings of greater than expected X chromosome skewing in mothers of some gay males, or attentional differences related to sexual orientation.

Some newer research could have been presented which would have supported at least a broader environmental set of influences but these too were omitted. For instance, one of the newer and larger twin studies found

Overall, the environment shared by twins (including familial and societal attitudes) explained 0-17% of the choice of sexual partner, genetic factors 18-39% and the unique environment 61-66%. The individual’s unique environment includes, for example, circumstances during pregnancy and childbirth, physical and psychological trauma (e.g., accidents, violence, and disease), peer groups, and sexual experiences.

In fact, twin researchers are not sure what an individual’s unique environment involves. It may be that subtle differences (e.g., chorions) in the pre-natal environment of twins account for some of that variance. In any case, looking around the website reveals another bias which may limit even more what “facts” will be presented.

To wit, the two links which purport to provide a “more in depth analysis” about what causes homosexuality lead to Julie Hamilton’s Homosexuality 101 and a Family Research Councilarticle which defends reparative theory. The organizations which the ACP refer readers to are PFOX, NARTH, Freetobeme.com (a religious resource), the Ex-gay educators caucus of the NEA, and JONAH (Jewish – that’s religious, right?). All of these groups promote the same reparative narrative of how homosexuality develops.

There are so many problems with the site that I have to be selective. For instance, regarding lifespan of homosexuals, the site states:

The only epidemiological study to date on the life span of gay men concluded that gay and bisexual men lose up to 20 years of life expectancy.

One may think this is a reference to Paul Cameron but when one clicks the link, instead there is a summary of Hogg et al’s 1997 Canadian study. However, again this site does not live up to the claim of providing the most current facts on the topic. In a 2001 follow up letter commenting on their study, Hogg et al said:

In contrast, if we were to repeat this analysis today the life expectancy of gay and bisexual men would be greatly improved. Deaths from HIV infection have declined dramatically in this population since 1996. As we have previously reported there has been a threefold decrease in mortality in Vancouver as well as in other parts of British Columbia. (p. 1499).

In other words, the prior results may not be accurate in that location today nor were even these results meant to be generalized to all gay men. Furthermore, there is another epidemiological study which is more current. Morten Frisch and Henrik Brønnum-Hansen, in a 2009 issue of the American Journal of Public Health, evaluated data from Denmark and concluded that mortality for homosexual men marrying after 1996 is virtually the same as for heterosexual men in Denmark. This is the most current information but you won’t find it on the factsaboutyouth.com website.

Finally, the site has a section on change therapy. I am not sure why this is needed since the authors say most confused kids will end up straight. Anyway, the section here repeats NARTH’s views about change therapy and lo and behold references my 1998 review of the literature on conversion therapy — except now the link isn’t live since I recently asked NARTH to remove my articles from the NARTH website.  The mistake I made in that review is the same one NARTH makes in their recent paper and that this website makes. In my review, I summarized every study or anecdote I could find on reorientation without regard for the quality of the research methods (e.g., sampling, design, etc.). There are so many problems with the early research, most notably the absence of control groups, reliance on anecdotes and follow ups that I do not view that review as anything more than suggestive of the need for further research. If anything, I have come to see that efforts to change are most frequently efforts to bring one’s behavior and desires in line with religious beliefs or social expectations.

On the change therapy page, the statements about modalities would no doubt be confusing to a teen trying to get through this site, with unsubstatiated references to EMDR, reparative and Imago therapy. There are no controlled studies of these methods for purposes of sexual reorientation. Mentioning EMDR, etc., is all the more striking when you consider that a medical group hosts this project. Can you imagine pediatricians choosing drugs or medical treatments based on the kind of evidence provided here?

One more observation: I am confused by the denial of religious influence on this site. If done differently, I might support a conservative group of docs who wanted to encourage youth to consider the role of faith and family in making sense of their same-sex attractions. However, this site avoids that discussion and pretends that the resources listed are not associated with the religious right. I would prefer that the group simply declare their views directly. Physicians should recognize the important role of religious faith and for those people who believe at their core that homosexual behavior is wrong, there should be alternatives. This site however, provides only limited information and limited options and falls far short of the stated objectives.

An additional problem: The ACP website misrepresents Francis Collins. The website makes it seems as though Collins believes in sexual reorientation because he does not believe homosexuality is predetermined by a gene or genes. However, he actually said this to Exgaywatch:

It troubles me greatly to learn that anything I have written would cause anguish for you or others who are seeking answers to the basis of homosexuality. The words quoted by NARTH all come from the Appendix to my book “The Language of God” (pp. 260-263), but have been juxtaposed in a way that suggests a somewhat different conclusion that I intended. I would urge anyone who is concerned about the meaning to refer back to the original text.

The evidence we have at present strongly supports the proposition that there are hereditary factors in male homosexuality — the observation that an identical twin of a male homosexual has approximately a 20% likelihood of also being gay points to this conclusion, since that is 10 times the population incidence. But the fact that the answer is not 100% also suggests that other factors besides DNA must be involved. That certainly doesn’t imply, however, that those other undefined factors are inherently alterable.

Your note indicated that your real interest is in the truth. And this is about all that we really know. No one has yet identified an actual gene that contributes to the hereditary component (the reports about a gene on the X chromosome from the 1990s have not held up), but it is likely that such genes will be found in the next few years.

Collins confirmed the accuracy of this statement to me in a separate email. Note that he says his words were juxtaposed to create a different meaning than he intended. Also, note that lack of genetic predetermination does not mean that orientation is generally alterable.

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  • Ann

    Has there been any follow-up on the 2008 X-Chromosome skewing study?

  • Ann

    Also, I realize this study is about men – are there any similar studies that have been made for women with same gender attractions?

  • http://crystalgaze2.blogspot.com Michelle

    I see that in their page on Gender Identity they have conveniently ignored the existence of the WPATH Standards of Care, as well as research published by Dr. Spack, or Dr. Cohen-Kettenis regarding GID in youth – choosing instead to engage in fear mongering statements about available treatments.

  • Al Lamoureux

    Warren,

    I fail to see a couple of things: You mention that this is s thinly veiled site for the religious right. this seems like an assumption on your part. Are you saying that because the article takes a slant that is TYPICALLY put forth by the religious right?

    Secondly,

    I see a double standard here. You are willing to take the ACP to task for choosing poorly designed research arcticles to support their position but did not do so when the APA did so last summer. I was disappointed in your positive response to the APA position paper, which was produce in a “Star chamber” and also chose questionable older studies to support it’s findings.

  • http://crystalgaze2.blogspot.com Michelle

    Al:

    American College of Pediatricians is a group that spawned itself after deciding that the American Academy of Pediatrics was becoming “too liberal” .

    Go read: http://americancollegeofpediatricians.org/History-of-the-College.html

    Second, their affiliation with NARTH in the Facts About Youth project shows even more clearly the biases that they start from.

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  • Lynn David

    What makes the ACP a thinly-veiled site for the conservative/religious right?

    .

    One telling aspect is that most of the websites are nearly about nothing but the sexuality of youth. Certainly, American children are about more than sex. What about sports medicine, drug addiction, ADD, autism, and the myriad of other afflictions which might befall children?

    .

    Admittedly they do have 5 position papers on health issues, but 3 (Abstinence, HPV vaccine, Morning-After Pill) are based in their somewhat single-mindedness on sex. One is about marijuana; but the last is on “freedom of conscience” concerning the work of their membership not to engage in something they might consider not ‘right.’

    .

    Their number of other position statements all deal with sociological conditions not medical ones. Some intersect with the medical but it looks like most do not; or if they do it is only quite tangentially.

    .

    I’d even question their position as scientists. From their website (Values):

    http://americancollegeofpediatricians.org/About-Us/

    The American College of Pediatricians: Recognizes that there are absolutes and scientific truths that transcend relative social considerations of the day.

    There is no such thing as scientific truth. There are only facts and evidence from which hypothesis and theory are drawn. These sure don’t sound like scientists. The Values section from there on sounds more like a profession of Christian faith rather than the ordinances of a scientific organization.

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

    Al – Good to hear from you.

    What I said was that the ACP website says it is non-religious but then introduces materials that are associated with the religious right – NARTH is the go to resource for Exodus, Focus on the Family, FRC, etc, as is JONAH, and PFOX. Remember, I was once a part of that scene (NARTH award winner, and spoke on behalf of PFOX). (I regret that now even though my religious beliefs have not changed.) There is no question that these groups are primarily made of conservative religious folks. Now, there is nothing wrong and a lot right with conservative faith but it is wrong in my opinion to say the site is non-religious.

    You’ll have to help me out on which studies the APA used inappropriately. I realize that the APA selected only gay advocates, but the product was quite good and much more friendly to religion that most critics expected. I do think the APA task force could have treated Jones and Yarhouse a little better but even that study was not of therapy for change but rather religiously mediated change. Most of the people who were satisfied by their Exodus participation were so because they aligned their actions to their religious beliefs. This is exactly what the APA report made space for in therapy.

    This ACP paper is so distorted that I see no comparison. The APA task force dealt with some of the opposing research and opinion and was measured in response (evidence is insufficient that therapy produces change). The ACP paper avoids whole bodies of research and makes conclusions where there aren’t any as yet.

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

    They lie in a Good Cause.

    I don’t mean about the reparative therapy etc. There it’s possible that they’re honestly mistaken. I personally don’t see how, but reasonable people can differ on the weight they place on different pieces of evidence.

    I mean the blatant dishonesty in pretending to be apolitical, current, and non-religious.

    They know that if they were honest, and stated openly they were advocates for a particular political, ideological and religious view, they would lack credibility due to their honesty. That would not matter of they were genuinely interested in the researching the truth. But for an advocacy group whose mission is to propagandise, it’s fatal. So they lie.

    For example…

    In January 2005, Pulaski County Circuit Judge Timothy White … called Rekers’ testimony “extremely suspect.” He also accused Rekers of testifying solely for promoting his “own personal agenda.”

    Miami-Dade Circuit Court Judge Cindy Lederman … said “Dr. Rekers’ testimony was far from a neutral and unbiased recitation of the relevant scientific evidence. Dr. Rekers’ beliefs are motivated by his strong ideological and theological convictions that are not consistent with the science. Based on his testimony and demeanor at trial, the court can not consider his testimony to be credible nor worthy of forming the basis of public policy.”

    It’s what they do.

  • David

    Great post, Dr. Throckmorton. This will surely put you back to the top of LaBarbera’s enemies list.

    I recently visited ACP’s website and I want to echo what Lynn David says above. This is purportedly an organization of pediatricians (actually, only about 50 alleged doctors). So you would expect to see some attention paid to the issues that most impact infant and child health: nutrition, poverty, obesity, treatment and prevention of childhood diseases, and for older children, gun violence and smoking. But none of that interests ACP. Nearly everything on that site is directly or indirectly related to the two religious right obsessions, gays and abortion.

    Oh, I did see one submission on health care reform. An important issue that directly impacts the health care of millions of kids. But the ACP prefers to focus on what the author called “an analysis of the ideologies and worldviews” of health care reform proponents. That is ACP’s contribution to the science of pediatrics.

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

    David – Thanks, hey where did you get your estimate of the number of doctors?

  • Ned Stringham

    Warren:

    Thank you for shining some light onto this subject. I especially appreciate your grasp of the research and unfailing insistence that scientific commentary on homosexuality and change therapy be truly scientific. The web site you critiqued obviously included some outdated research studies and presents information with significant bias. The ASP needs to be more genuine in declaring its composition, motives and theoretical orientation.

    Nevertheless, I have to agree with Al that you appear to treat NARTH and its allies with a stricter standard than you do the APA. I believe that your commentary on the APA’s position paper from last summer fails to challenge their extreme bias and clear misrepresentation of the research. While it is commendable that APA acknowledged the legitimacy of therapy that helps people conform behavior to religious beliefs, other aspects of the report distorted the research in ways that can only be called heinous.

    For example, Mark Yarhouse has said that the study he conducted with Stan Jones was virtually ignored, relegated to the footnote section without discussion. This longitudinal study was probably the best designed as well as one of the most recent pieces of research on change therapy done to date. In contrast, while ignoring Jones and Yarhouse, the APA report gave lengthy treatment to aversive shock technique studies from the 1950′s and cited these studies as proof that change therapy causes harm. This conclusion was not appropriately qualified or nuanced. No known therapist guided by either reparative or sexual identity theories today uses aversive techniques. In fact, many therapists even condemn them.

    These are just two examples of the APA’s bias – bias that in my view can only be called irresponsible and reprehensible. I thank you for challenging conservatives to live up to their claims of scientific objectivity and compassionate caregiving. It is necessary for conservatives to review all of the research honestly and diligently as they draw conclusions and recommendations that will influence public policy and professional practice.

    However, considering the enormous resources available to the APA, and their claim of scientific leadership, their failure to practice good science in their research review deserves even stronger criticism than the slanted efforts of much smaller and less influential groups like the ASP.

    Warren, keep the point of your pen (or your mouse) sharp, but please direct it more towards the left as well as the right.

  • David Blakeslee

    Thanks for stopping by Ned, and I think your points are well taken…

    The Task Force, while making some important strides, continued with citing old research when it suited their needs and overlooking other, new research.

    It is a onesided conversation much of the time, but Christians are held to a higher standard than the APA .

    I hope you and your family are well.

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

    Ned – great to have you drop by. I appreciate your tone and recognition of problems in the new NARTH effort.

    Your critique of the direction of my criticisms is also well taken. For about the first 7 years of my work on sexual identity matters, I focused on the distortions of the gay affirming side of the culture clash in op-eds and presentations. This was wonderful news to the NARTH community and they gave me their Freud award (ironic huh?). After that, I became disillusioned with what I saw as the same kind of distortions on the NARTH side of things. I raised those privately with about anyone who would listen until about 2005. Even in I Do Exist, I questioned the dogma about causation by saying it was a scientific mystery. The private conversations didn’t help much. In 2005-2006 (this is my recollection, I could make it more specific if I checked more closely), I began to become more public in my criticisms of problems on the conservative side. At the same time, the research has progressed and my views have become modified as a result. All of this leads to more attacks now from the right than from the left.

    I am not oblivious to issues which might cut against the gay affirming side and I made no friends there with my public concerns over Kevin Jennings last Fall. Your specific questions related to the APA report and I think it would be valuable for me to revisit that report.

    I will need some time to do that and will do it in a separate post. For now, let me say that I agree with Mark and you that the task force inappropriately dismissed his study with Jones. I don’t think their study helps the change therapy proponents at all since it was not a study of therapy. However, religiously mediated change in behavior and identity was a focus of the APA report and there the Jones and Yarhouse study provides valuable and credible support for these efforts.

    On balance, however, I believe the APA report is lightyears better than the NARTH paper on change and this recent ACP project. And as David says, I expect more from people who critique the other side over claimed distortions. Doing something because the other side does it is pretty lame.

  • David Blakeslee

    By the way Ned…

    you are a thoughtful and amazing writer…a credit to your profession and your faith. Please come back often.

  • Al Lamoureux

    Warren,

    Good talking with you too.

    I am starting to question your objectivity, because I have to agree with Ned and David. The APA used many studies that were over 30 years old and poorly designed to arrive at thier conclusions. You do appear to be holding a different standard for APA than ACP. If they are both biased then say so. It would be disingenuous on your part to overlook the CLEAR biases of the APA. By their very nature they CANNOT be objective as the committee was stacked to begin with. NARTH members of APA were rejected as candidates for the committee. IF APA was trying to be objective in the first place, then they would have accepted voices form across the spectrum to arrive at a synthesis of the data to reach their conclusions. They did not, to the APA findings as such are worthless.

    Frankly, I found it quite insulting for the APA to suggest that if a person has a conflict between their religion and their sexuality, to change their religion. The hubris and arrogance of this is beyond the pale. Asking for the APA to give us good science of this issue is like putting the fox in charge of the hen house.

    I wonder if in your attempts to be “fair” to APA and be receptive to their position, you’ve sacrificed your prophetic voice. A prophet needs to challenge all voices, from the left and the right with equal vigor.

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

    Al: From you comments, I wonder if you have been misinformed about key points of the APA report. Let me take them in order:

    The APA used many studies that were over 30 years old and poorly designed to arrive at thier conclusions.

    The APA reviewed studies after 1960. They acknowledged that the studies were poorly designed. On page 43, the report says:

    Given the limited amount of methodologically sound research, we cannot draw a conclusion regarding whether recent forms of SOCE are or are not effective.

    Given the lack of prospective studies with controls, I think this is a measured assessment. The APA said the research was insufficient which is true. They said that there is evidence of shifts in sexual orientation identity shifts.

    You do appear to be holding a different standard for APA than ACP. If they are both biased then say so. It would be disingenuous on your part to overlook the CLEAR biases of the APA. By their very nature they CANNOT be objective as the committee was stacked to begin with. NARTH members of APA were rejected as candidates for the committee. IF APA was trying to be objective in the first place, then they would have accepted voices form across the spectrum to arrive at a synthesis of the data to reach their conclusions. They did not, to the APA findings as such are worthless.

    You might recall that I was in the lead in expressing concern over the mission and objectivity of the APA’s task force. I initiated a response that eventually included 300 plus groups calling for the recognition of religiosity as a diversity variable. The APA met with a group of people including reps from evangelical groups and religious bodies. Mark Yarhouse, Bill Hathaway and I were readers of drafts of the report and provided input. I think the APA started out with a more insular process which broadened as many voices were raised. I do not deny bias at the APA but I do not agree that their findings are worthless. We need to use caution perhaps, and evaluate, but not worthless.

    Frankly, I found it quite insulting for the APA to suggest that if a person has a conflict between their religion and their sexuality, to change their religion. The hubris and arrogance of this is beyond the pale. Asking for the APA to give us good science of this issue is like putting the fox in charge of the hen house.

    Where did you get the idea that the APA said you should change your religion? Check these links and review again the report. It does not say what you said it does.

    Does the APA want gays to switch churches?

    A new therapy on faith and identity

    I wonder if in your attempts to be “fair” to APA and be receptive to their position, you’ve sacrificed your prophetic voice. A prophet needs to challenge all voices, from the left and the right with equal vigor.

    I do not disagree. I would encourage you to review the APA info and then let me know what you think.

  • David Blakeslee

    Dear Al,

    Thanks for checking in.

    Their have been problems in the Christian community of social scientists about how to intervene on a variety of subjects that have to do with morals, culture and mental illness.

    About 80 years ago Christian fundamentalists, reasonably threatened by the implications of adopting Evolutionary theory created parallel institutions of higher learning.

    Similarly, Secularists began to aggressively marginalize religious thought and culture as it influenced moral decision-making.

    We are the “victims” of this false split.

    Engaging with the facts…all of the facts is an attempt to heal this rift, not for the benefit of those who created it or encouraged it, but for the benefit of those struggling with the intersection of values, identity, purpose and authenticity.

    The APA has generally made broad errors of assumption about the religiously devout…rooted, I think in a worldview they were steeped in that dates back about 4 centuries…

  • Timothy Kincaid

    Ned

    For example, Mark Yarhouse has said that the study he conducted with Stan Jones was virtually ignored, relegated to the footnote section without discussion. This longitudinal study was probably the best designed as well as one of the most recent pieces of research on change therapy done to date.

    I would encourage you to read the book and the follow-up about this study. I think that it may not say what you think it says. Depending on your perspective, it says one of two things:

    Secular Perspective

    Heterosexuality has the attribute of being attracted generally to persons of the opposite sex and not to persons of the same sex. An attraction to just one person of the opposite sex while retaining generalized attractions to the same-sex is not indicative of a heterosexual orientation.

    The Jones and Yarhouse study began with 98 participants, all of whom had a homosexual orientation. After seven years of religious mediation, there were exactly zero participants with a heterosexual orientation. None.

    This would be, from a secular viewpoint, an epic fail

    Religious Perspective

    Heterosexuality (a desire towards the opposite sex generally, absent any desire for the same sex) is not really the goal. Rather, increasing ways to function heterosexually and living with a Christian sexual ethic is the measure of success.

    14 participants were able to live heterosexually with controllable and tolerable levels of same-sex attraction. 18 more were content with celibacy as a lifestyle.

    To understand these “successes”, consider the words of Stanton Jones:

    “A typical hetero male finds himself attracted to a wide range of females. But among the successful people who reported conversion the typical response was I’m very happy with my sexual responses to my wife, but I don’t experience much hetero attraction to other women. Also, when asked and pressed about whether they still find attraction to men, they will say: ‘Yes, if I let my mind go in that direction.’ “

    While this is not what most people would call “heterosexual”, from a religious perspective it is successful in meeting that client’s goals.

    A strongly conservative Christian would say that any soul rescued from the eternal fiery pit of hell is a success. And a more moderate conservative might see that any adjustment that allows the same-sex attracted person to place Christ first and to manage temptation is success.

    Rather than view the process as “make homosexuals into heterosexuals”, the religious viewpoint sees the process as “advance the kingdom of God”.

    APA Perspective

    The APA rightly recognizes that for some same-sex attracted persons, the successes lauded in the J&Y study are appropriate. Those whose identity demands conformity to traditional sexual ethics may, indeed, be best served by therapy that is reflective of that premise.

    But that does not mean that therapy changes orientation. And as unfair as conservatives may find it, the goal of the APA is not to advance the kingdom of God.

    So the APA can only look as the “change” experienced in the Jones and Yarhouse study and determine whether it reflects a change in sexual orientation. If we assume the secular definition of heterosexuality, then we must agree that J&Y does not provide much evidence of such change.

    In fact, if one were to assume that the J&Y study was the final authority on the subject (which no one does), we would have to conclude that religious mediation absolutely cannot replace same-sex attractions with opposite-sex attraction.

  • Timothy Kincaid

    Ned,

    If you want to read my full analysis, you can do so here

  • David

    They list their charter members on their “About Us” page.

    http://www.americancollegeofpediatricians.org/Charter-Members.html

    They don’t provide any other membership figures that I can find. However, if there were many other members, it wouldn’t make sense to ignore them on the website, while listing 50 charter members by name. Accordingly, I conclude that the group consists largely or entirely of its charter members as listed, and its board.

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

    Warren, I think your position can be best summed up in the words of Keynes : “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?”

    Meanwhile, FactsAboutYouth.com because of its appareny neutrality and professional authorship has garnered much favour:

    Mercatornet – “FactsAboutYouth.com looks like a very useful website, providing some balance in an issue which can be very divisive in school communities.”

    Citizenlink – “Doctors Say Schools May Be Spreading Misinformation About Homosexuality”

    WorldNetDaily – “Pediatricians warn educators not to promote being ‘gay’”

    Christian Post – “Conservative Pediatricians Caution Schools on Gay-Affirming Policies”

  • Timothy Kincaid

    David,

    A press release sent out in 2003 claimed that they started with about 100 members. This seems to have been purged from the ACP website (which avoids all mention of membership rolls) but is still available on the wonderful internet.

    They may have more (or less), but that’s probably a good reference number for membership until further info is provided.

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

    According to ACP’s 2008 990 reports found on Guidestar, they took in $44,349 in membership dues. According to the website, to be a physician member, the dues is $225. However, you can be an associate member for $100. Looking at the committee who developed the Facts About Youth, website, 5 of them are not physicians. Arthur Goldberg is listed as a BCPC – board certified professional counselor (this is a meaningless certification from the American Board of Professional Counseling – one does not need to have a counseling degree to get this certification). More about that later…

    Anyway, if the membership consisted of physicians, there would be about 200, and with the likelihood that the membership is mostly non physicians, they could have perhaps twice that in total members.

  • Timothy Kincaid

    Thanks, Warren. Good approach.

    Assuming the membership rates and total above, if their non-physician membership is twice that of their physician membership, they would have 313 members.

    I think we can say “about 300 dues paying members” and assume we are accurate.

  • Lynn David

    Zoe Brain…. Meanwhile, FactsAboutYouth.com because of its appareny neutrality and professional authorship has garnered much favour:

    .

    Christian Post – “Conservative Pediatricians Caution Schools on Gay-Affirming Policies”

    At least the Christian Post correctly identified the pediatricians as ‘conservative.’

  • Jayhuck

    Oh c’mon – Wasn’t FOTF denounced as a credible organization after authors of several studies came out claiming they distorted their research to further their own particular agenda. Who is actually taking these groups seriously?

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

    Lots of people, Jayhuck. I’d say the majority of those in the Christian Right, probably in excess of 90%. Huckabee for example has been photographed with the head of MassResistance, one of the more rabidly mendacious of these groups.

    Here’s what OneNewsNow said about this site:

    Physicians help parents, schools combat propaganda

    The American College of Pediatricians (ACP) is cautioning educators and expressing concerns on dealing with sexual orientation and gender confusion by sending a letter to every U.S. school superintendent.

    ACP president Dr. Thomas Benton sent the letter to the school districts. In that letter he refers recipients to FactsAboutYouth.com, a website that has been established to provide educators, parents, and youngsters factual information about sexual development. He encourages parents to go to the site, check out the facts, and start a dialogue with their school superintendent.

    How many are going to know the facts about this unholy alliance? How many are going to uncritically accept what they say, and go on to quote it in comments and letters to the editor as strong evidence in support of their actions?

    The AFTAH executive director adds that the false information obtained from activists is designed to promote their gender-identity disorder, but the new website takes on more importance because parents generally have no clue how active the homosexual agenda is in schools.

    It’s all a conspiracy you see. All of the things wrong with our schools. A vast, anti-American conspiracy by the Jews Communists Gays.

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

    Now, here is a thread that needed to continue. Ned, Al, I hope you are reading. I would appreciate, especially from Al, a response to the evidence I put forward.

    Ned, I am still considering your thoughts. I reviewed the APA document and I am not sure that I agree that the studies were mishandled to the degree that you propose. Still reflecting….

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