Do critics of ‘conversion therapy’ live in a fact-free zone?

Feb 8, 2022 by

by Michael Cook, Bio Edge:

“We are committed to building a society in which conversion therapy no longer takes place,” says the UK Minister for Women and Equalities, Liz Truss. Legislation to enforce this could be passed this year.

For legislators around the world, bans on “conversion therapy” are catnip.

The French National Assembly unanimously passed a ban last month. Canada’s lower house passed a ban in December, also unanimously. Other countries with bans include Brazil, Ecuador, Malta, Albania and Germany. In Australia, the jurisdictions of Queensland, the ACT and Victoria have passed bans. In the United States, 28 states have effectively banned it.

Just two problems.

First, in 2022, what is “conversion therapy”? Abusive violence no longer happens – at least not in the countries which are banning it.

Second – and even more important –where is the peer-reviewed expert proof that “talking conversion therapy” is harmful?

A lot is at stake. The terms of the various laws vary, but some of them would prevent psychologists, pastors, or even parents from dissuading children from a belief that they are gay or lesbian or trans.

An article published this week in a leading peer-reviewed journal, Frontiers in Psychology, claims that there is none. American sociologist Paul Sullins states bluntly that “even for persons for whom SOCE has had no efficacy, there is no discernible psychosocial risk”.

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