SPLC Hosts Conversion Therapy Discussion Aimed at LDS
Previously mentioned here.
“We wanted to raise awareness of the harm that ‘conversion’ therapy causes people … that this isn’t a thing of the past and is still taking place around the country and abroad,” said Sam Wolfe, a civil-rights lawyer for SPLC who helped launch the LGBT Rights Project.
“About 15 people attended the Provo meeting and about 20 people attended the Salt Lake City meeting,” said Wolfe. “They included community members, health professionals and other survivors who were not on the panel. So far the Provo meeting was the most powerful one we’ve had.”
“SPLC, Truth Wins Out Hold Meetings on Conversion Therapy”
Carrie Maxwell for the Windy City Times, 18 April 2012
FOX SLC on LDS Conversion Therapy Group Evergreen International
Evergreen thinks people can overcome their homosexual behavior. The international group is not affiliated with the LDS Church but espouses its teachings.
“How they work that out in their life varies dramatically from person to person,” says Evergreen spokesman David Pruden. “One person may simply manage those feelings, may choose to live a celibate life. Other people find the diminishment of those attractions dramatic and many times may actually have some heterosexual feelings start to arise and they may marry, they may have children.”
“These organizations are consumer fraud because they’re making promises they can’t deliver and causing disasters they never promised,” said [Wayne Besen, the founder of “Truth Wins Out”].
“We believe it is fraud — when you offer people a product that’s fake that doesn’t work, that’s faulty, that’s the very definition of fraud and the ex-gay ministries and the reparative therapies fits under that rubric,” said Besen.
“Group Offers ‘Therapy’ For LDS Members With Same-Sex Attraction”
Aaron Vaughn for Fox 13, KSTU
SPLC Discusses LDS Conversion Therapy in Provo, Salt Lake City
Next week Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center is coming to town on a mission. It wants to bring down conversion therapy.
[SPLC’s civil-rights staff attorney, Sam] Wolfe talks from personal experience, although in his case his brush with gay conversion therapy ultimately proved more of a wake-up call than destructive. He attended BYU and, struggling to follow what he calls “the established path” of finding a female partner for marriage, out of desperation called a number he’d found in advertisement that said, ”If you suffer from same sex attraction …” He felt like “I needed to cure myself,” but the group he reached out to, Evergreen, ultimately proved an “eye-opening experience.”
Wolfe had always assumed once you married a woman, life would turn out well. Instead, he met Mormon men who had been married, fathered children, only for their marriages to fallen apart in tragic ways, their former spouses and children hating them. The men “felt very attentive to me,” at Evergreen, giving him lingering hugs and nestling up to him during prayer.
“Has Someone Tried to ‘Cure’ You of Being Gay?”
Stephen Dark for Salt Lake City Weekly, 6 April 2012