NOM’s Jennifer Morse Condemns California’s “Ex-Gay” Therapy Ban
October 03, 2012 1:24 pm ET by Carlos Maza
Jennifer Morse, head of the National Organization for Marriage’s (NOM) Ruth Institute, condemned a new California law banning the use of “ex-gay” therapy for minors, claiming that it’s possible for gay people to become less gay through treatment.
On the October 2 edition of Lutheran Public Radio’s Issues, Etc., Morse criticized California’s ban on the widely discredited practice of attempting to cure minors of their homosexuality, citing personal acquaintances who she claims successfully underwent “ex-gay” therapy:
MORSE: What the gay lobby wants us to believe is that if you’re gay, you’re gay, and there’s absolutely no possibility of anybody ever changing their sexual orientation from gay to straight. Now that’s a very, very strong position for them to take because all it requires is one counter-example to disprove it, right? All you have to do is have one person who says “hey, I changed,” you know, and that extreme claim that they’re making is down the tubes, right? And, you know, I’m acquainted with people who tell me that at one time in their life they were of homosexual orientation and now they’re telling me they are not of homosexual orientation. So what am I supposed to believe? That they’re lying to me? [emphasis added]
Morse went on to criticize gay lobbyists for trying to “go on the coattails” of the Civil Rights Movement by equating sexual orientation with immutable characteristics like race:
MORSE: [T]he gay lobby has committed itself to the position that homosexuality is not only not a mental illness, but it’s an inborn, natural, normal trait like hair color or eye color, and most particularly it’s like race. They want to say that sexual orientation is like race because they want to piggy back on all of the civil rights laws that have come into place in order to protect blacks from racial discrimination, basically. And so they’re wanting to go on the coattails of all of that legal doctrine and well worked out legal procedure and so on and so forth. They want to just kind of slide in on that. [emphasis added]
Morse concluded the segment by citing a deeply flawed study that allegedly proved that people could experience a “lessening of the cravings” and “relief from some of the symptoms” of homosexuality through treatment:
MORSE: You and I have talked before about this professor from Wheaton College, Stan Jones, who has done some serious research that has been published in peer-reviewed journals. Stan Jones, the chairman of the Psychology department over there at Wheaton College. And they have been following people and been tracking this. And there are, in fact, documented cases of people who seek therapy, who seek help for changing their sexual orientation who have received some benefit from that therapy as they define it – who have received a lessening of the cravings, who have received a release from some of the more compulsive aspects of their behavior and so on. So I think we know that it is possible to have some relief from some of the symptoms, even if we don’t fully understand how it works and even if it doesn’t work for everyone, so on and so forth. [emphasis added]
Prior to the passage of California’s “ex-gay” ban, NOM’s Ruth Institute begged its supporters to “please, please spread the word” about the bill, even publishing a press release from a group that called the measure “one of the most chilling suppressions of speech yet in the never-ending LGBT push to silence opposition.”
Morse herself has repeatedly peddled the idea that gay people simply should choose not to engage in homosexuality. Earlier this year, she admitted that her decision to publicly criticize gay marriage instead of homosexuality is a purely “strategic” choice.