What gays and the transgendered want is acceptance.
Thus, gays went beyond attaining sexual freedom to fight for the legalization of same-sex marriage, with the social affirmation that marriage bestows. The transgendered are not satisfied with the freedom to identify as another gender. They insist, as well, that other people identify them as the other gender.
LGBTQ folks attack any implication that there is anything wrong with them. And so they fight any attempt to change them.
Aided by a society that does accept them, to the point of acceding to their every demand, the LGBTQ community has succeeded in getting laws passed that criminalize “conversion therapy.” In its crudest form, this entailed psychologists treating people with same-sex attraction by showing them erotic slides and giving them electro-shocks whenever a homosexual image came up. This treatment grew out of the particularly loathsome psychological theory of behaviorism, with its claim that behavior can be controlled and manipulated by means of rewards and punishments.
But now efforts are being made to outlaw any kind of therapy that might help a person change his or her same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria. Even if the person wants to change.
Now the Australian state of Victoria has taken yet another step.
In his article for First Things entitled Prohibiting Prayer in Australia, Carl R. Trueman reports on the passage of the Change or Suppression (Conversion) Practices Prohibition Bill 2020, which prohibits, in the words of the law (my bolds):
a practice or conduct directed towards a person, whether with or without the person’s consent on the basis of the person’s sexual orientation or gender identity; and for the purpose of changing or suppressing the sexual orientation or gender identity of the person; or inducing the person to change or suppress their sexual orientation or gender identity.
Up until now, contemporary ethics, particularly when it comes to sex, has been built around “consent.” Pretty much any sexual act between two “consenting” adults is considered acceptable, while a sexual act performed without one of the person’s “consent” is seriously evil.
With this law, however, when it comes to wanting to change one’s sexual or gender orientation, as Trueman says, “the consent of the person is immaterial to the legal point: The change or suppression practice is illegal regardless of the attitude of the person involved.”
And the law’s list of illegal practices includes, in the words of the law, “carrying out a religious practice, including but not limited to, a prayer-based practice, a deliverance practice or an exorcism.”
So the state of Victoria has outlawed praying for someone’s deliverance from same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria. That would seem to include the prayers of a pastor, the prayers of parents, or even praying for oneself.
Read Trueman’s discussion, which concludes,
. . . it is also an ominous sign when such a basic religious practice as prayer—so often decried by the irreligious as pointless hokum—is now the target of hostile legislation in a democratic country. We may not yet be at the point where thought is a crime, but we seem to be at the point where the expression of certain thoughts, even in prayer, could be considered criminal behavior. At the risk of encouraging people to commit high crimes and misdemeanors, I would urge everyone to pray that other countries do not follow Victoria’s example, for if they do, it might be illegal to pray for almost anything of which our lords and masters disapprove in a few years’ time.