Gay "Conversion" Therapy
Q&A Radio: Sunday, 6 January 2013, Question 4
I answered a question on gay "conversion" therapy on Philosophy in Action Radio on 6 January 2013. You can listen to or download the podcast segment below – or check out the whole episode.
Was California right or wrong to ban "gay cure" therapy for minors? Recently, California banned "reparative" or "conversion" therapy – meaning, therapy that aims to make gay teenagers straight. Such therapy is widely regarded as dangerous pseudo-science by mental health professionals. The ban only applies to patients under 18. So adults can still choose such therapy for themselves, but parents cannot foist it on their minor children. Is such therapy a form of child abuse? Or should parents have the power to compel such therapy on their children, even if they're morally wrong to do so?
My Answer, In Brief: Gay "conversion" therapy, even when voluntary, can be deeply destructive to a teenager. I'm not sure that it should be banned, however.
- Duration: 23:57
- Download: MP3 Segment (8.3 MB)
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- Wikipedia: Gay Conversion Therapy
- My So-Called Ex-Gay Life by Gabriel Arana
- The Pseudo-science of Sexual Orientation Conversion Therapy by Douglas C. Haldeman, Ph.D.
- Mission Impossible: Why Reparative Therapy and Ex-Gay Ministries Fail by Kim I. Mills
- Anti-Gay Organizations: National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality and Exodus International
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About Philosophy in Action Radio
I'm Dr. Diana Hsieh. I'm a philosopher specializing the application of rational principles to the challenges of real life. I received my Ph.D in philosophy from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2009. My dissertation defended moral responsibility and moral judgment against the doubts raised by Thomas Nagel's "problem of moral luck."
My radio show, Philosophy in Action Radio, broadcasts live over the internet on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings. On Sunday mornings, I answer four meaty questions applying rational principles to the challenges of real life in a live hour-long show. Greg Perkins of Objectivist Answers co-hosts the show. On Wednesday evenings, I interview an expert guest about a topic of practical importance.
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