Boris and the unicorn ban ending ‘LGBT conversion therapy’
Boris Johnson has announced that he ‘will end’ the ‘“repulsive”’ practice of ‘LGBT conversion therapy’ following the departure of ‘three of the Government’s equality advisers’, who resigned over a ‘lack of action’ on implementing such a ban. Although last year the Prime Minister said ‘that he wanted to ban the controversial “therapy”’, according to campaigners, ‘little action had been taken’. Mr Johnson ‘apologised’ to ‘the three LGBT advisers’, Jayne Ozanne, James Morton and Ellen Murray, ‘who quit over a lack of progress’ on the matter; apparently, the ‘catalyst’ for their resignations was Parliamentary debate this week ‘on gay conversion therapy, which drew attention to the Government’s failure to take action.’ https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/03/12/boris-johnson-will-end-repulsive-conversion-therapy/
Quite how this ‘ban’ would work remains to be seen, since Mr Johnson gave no evidence that the abhorrent practices he wants to ban actually take place. Recently, in The House magazine, Conservative MP Alicia Kearns threw some light on this mystery, in saying that ‘said the “fraudulent and abhorrent practice” must be criminalised, as existing laws do not enable prosecution where no physical harm has been caused’; maintaining that ‘any attempt to stop someone from expressing their chosen gender identity or sexual orientation is ‘conversion therapy’, she said this ‘can range from “therapy” and prayer sessions, to aversive treatments like electroshocks or even “corrective” rape”’. While providing no details of these practices actually taking place anywhere (although unlike rape, prayer is still legal), she said that any ban on ‘conversion therapy’ must ‘include “not only conversion therapy to change sexual orientation” but also “non-consensual attempts to prevent someone from expressing their own identity”’; she also made clear that she wants any such ban ‘to include parents seeking to protect their children’ from trans ‘therapy’ including sex-changes. https://www.christian.org.uk/news/tory-mp-lists-prayer-alongside-rape-in-proposed-conversion-therapy-ban/
This suggests that such bans are in fact covert attacks on Christianity itself, as well as Christian therapists offering help to individuals unhappy with their sexual identity and/or expression, and at the Westminster Hall debate on the subject, MPs attacked ‘prayer and pastoral support’. A ‘number of MPs’ took ‘aim at churches which hold to the Bible’s teaching on gender and sexuality’, including Labour MP Stella Creasy, who joined with Alicia Kearns in dismissing ‘concerns over the impact on freedom of religious expression’; Ms Creasy claimed there was ‘“no conflict with spirituality”’, while Ms Kearns insisted: “‘Religious liberty is fundamental, but so too is people’s liberty to live their lives free from identity-based violence and abuse,”’ insisting that ‘abhorrent practices’ must be criminalised. https://www.christian.org.uk/news/mps-attack-prayer-and-pastoral-support-in-conversion-therapy-debate/?e120321
Religious belief is also a protected category under the 2010 Equality Act, and it should be obvious that members of sexual minorities should have the equal right to seek psychological help for their problems, but we can guess who will lose if it comes to a contest between traditional religion and sexual religion. Indeed, a sexual diversity campaigner is calling ‘for Christians to be banned from praying for someone with unwanted same-sex attraction’: co-founder of the lobby group Ban Conversion Therapy, Matthew Hyndman, writing in The Independent, ‘denies that anyone willingly seeks out such help’, insisting: ‘“The pernicious power of prayer must be dealt with”’.
In fact they were recently ‘dealt with’ in the Australian state of Victoria, where ‘[p]astoral advice and prayer that upholds the Bible’s teaching on sexual ethics were recently criminalised’ under ‘draconian’ new ‘“conversion therapy”’ legislation, which ‘outlaws any practice that seeks to change or suppress a person’s “sexual orientation or gender identity” – including prayer’, with offenders facing ‘up to 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of AUS$10,000 (approximately £5,600).’ With echoes of Communist China, during ‘the twelve-month implementation period, the state Attorney General said religious educators, teachers and ministers would be “re-educated” by the government to prevent them breaking the law.’ https://www.christian.org.uk/news/lgbt-activist-calls-for-uk-ban-on-prayer-for-unwanted-same-sex-attraction/?e260221
Christian charity Core Issues Trust, which supports ‘those who voluntarily seek a change in sexual preference’, is urging the Government ‘to ensure conversion therapy is done safely rather than banning the practice altogether’, saying in a joint statement with the International Federation for Therapeutic and Counselling Choice: ‘“Efforts to regulate counselling and psychotherapeutic work are necessary in any society that cares for its people”’, and pointing out that “‘we live in a world of diverse ideologies and cultural practices. Banning and criminalising will not eliminate poor therapy. We call on the Government to ensure that in future, its LGBT advisors are representative of different ideological, religious, non-religious and cultural perspectives rather than becoming a monoculture that leads to dogma and viewpoint discrimination.”’ https://premierchristian.news/en/news/article/that-s-what-my-christian-faith-compels-me-to-do-lgbt-campaigner-quits-gov-advisory-panel-over-lack-of-conversion-therapy-ban?utm_source=Premier%20Christian%20Media&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=12227122_daily%20news%2012%20March%202021&utm_content=3&dm_i=16DQ,7A2IA,POL8O7,TIO04,1
With no evidence that the ‘abhorrent’ practices to which Mr Johnson alludes actually exist, a broad ban on any counselling that focuses on sexual matters might be proposed, but it would succeed in excluding a great many people from receiving counselling for their problems.
Unfortunately, it seems all political parties and the highest levels of government are now under the influence of the wokerati and in thrall to the demands of campaigns like Stonewall and Ban Conversion Therapy; but the sexual diversity lobby has a vested interest not only in silencing public debate on such issues, but in silencing those members of their ‘community’ who have found that, contrary to the ‘rainbow’ narrative, they were not actually ‘born that way’. Banning ‘conversion therapy’ or even prayer on the subject would not only harm such individuals, but might succeed in covering up evidence of childhood trauma, including sexual molestation.
Despite this, as with the campaigns to silence silent prayer outside abortion clinics (which Ms Creasy also supports) https://us2.campaign-archive.com/?u=bed173cc9adfcad1e0e442a35&id=a2298a8935&e=35144f3765 with ‘conversion therapy’ there does not have to be any evidence of an ‘offence’ taking place apart from offending the feelings of sexual diversity campaigners.
There is nothing easier for a politician than to ban something that doesn’t exist – even while the very real injustice of preventing troubled individuals from receiving help for their problems is ignored – thus it comes as no surprise that Boris Johnson has jumped on this particular bandwagon, no doubt under the impression that the sole destination is a prime place in the hallowed halls of secular saints.
However, if he thinks that this latest move will mollify the trans lobby, he will have a rude awakening when they move on to the next destination on their shopping list of demands, which will no doubt involve determining their own ‘gender’ identification.
Still, one of the undoubted attractions of banning something that does not exist lies in claiming that its very non-existence is proof of one’s own success in eradicating it. Perhaps Boris will move on from banning mythical practices to claiming that he has slain the last unicorn.