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Letters: That gay 'cure'

December 08, 2012
  • Chaim Levin, left, and Michael Ferguson, right, with his partner Seth Anderson, are two of four men who are suing a New Jersey "conversion therapy" organization for fraud for promising to make them straight.
Chaim Levin, left, and Michael Ferguson, right, with his partner Seth Anderson,… (Richard Drew / Associated…)

Re "Judges put new therapy law in limbo," Dec. 5

U.S. District Judge William Shubb and psychologist Joseph Nicolosi have confused the right to express an opinion with the duty to do one's job. It is one thing to have a personal opinion; it is another thing to impose that opinion on people who pay you for a service. The opinion that "conversion therapy" for homosexuals works is just that — an opinion; it is not factual.

There is no serious evidence to support the practice, only wishful thinking and personal or religious beliefs. There is, however, considerable research-based evidence that shows conversion therapy is worthless and may even be harmful. As the saying goes, we're entitled to our own opinions but not our own facts, especially when dealing with other people's lives. I don't want an emergency room doctor acting on his belief that blood transfusions are against his religious convictions as I pass out on the gurney.

As a licensed marriage and family therapist, I know that expressing one's personal opinions or religious beliefs to a patient is not the exercise of free expression; it is malpractice. Therapy is not about what is best for the therapist but what is best for the patient.

Greg Gearn



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