Wednesday, August 17, 2016


A group of pastors is suing Illinois over a law that bars therapists from trying to change a minor's sexual orientation.
The lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court seeks to exclude clergy from the ban that took effect Jan. 1. The lawsuit contends the prohibition shouldn't apply to clergy because it violates free speech and religious rights.
Illinois is among five states with bans on so-called gay conversion therapy for youth under 18. Laws in California and New Jersey have withstood legal challenges, but an attorney for the pastors says the prohibitions in those states did not include clergy.
Critics of so-called gay conversion therapy argue it's traumatic and psychologically damaging."  Pres. Obama has come out against such therapy. 

However, perusal of the statute suggests that the ban on trying such therapy applies to 'mental health providers" only.  Pastors or clergy are not included in the definition of such providers.  Pastors are not included in the main part of the law unless they are acting in another therapy-related role.  The flap appears to be over this section below which has no exclusion for pastors and is not limited to mental health providers.
    Section 25. Advertisement and sales; misrepresentation. No
person or entity may, in the conduct of any trade or commerce,
use or employ any deception, fraud, false pretense, false
promise, misrepresentation, or the concealment, suppression,
or omission of any material fact in advertising or otherwise
offering conversion therapy services in a manner that
represents homosexuality as a mental disease, disorder, or
illness, with intent that others rely upon the concealment,
suppression, or omission of such material fact. A violation of
this Section constitutes an unlawful practice under the
Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act.

Although I am a supporter of LGBT rights, I am also a supporter of freedom of speech and religion.  This type of legislation smells of leftist knee-jerk intolerance and authoritarianism.  I have no problem with political correctness, everyone has First Amendment rights.  But when the correctness becomes law, there can be problems. There should be an exception for pastors.  If there isn't it violates these pastors' rights, as long as they are acting in a pastoral capacity.   For professionals, it may violate their first Amendment rights.  Stay tuned.  Further, don't parents have rights regarding what they think their child needs? 

Stay Tuned!


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