home
arts
literature
social sciences
special features
discussion
about glbtq
   search

 
   Encyclopedia
   Discussion
 
 
 
 
Advertising Opportunities
Press Kit
Research Guide
Terms of Service
Privacy Policy
Copyright
 
site guide
search tips
research guide
editors & contributors
contact us
send feedback
write the editor
 
 
 
 
subscribe
Subscribe to our free e-mail newsletter to receive a spotlight on glbtq culture every month.
e-mail address:
 
 
 
  unsubscribe
 
 
Popular Topics in The Arts
Nyad, Diana Nyad, Diana
Long-distance swimmer and respected sports commentator has in more recent years spoken out on issues of glbtq rights.
 
Dattani, Mahesh
Indian playwright, screenwriter, dancer, director, and actor Mahesh Dattani is an important figure in South Asian gay culture by virtue of his recurrent depiction of queer characters.
 
Baker, Josephine Baker, Josephine
Entertainer Josephine Baker achieved acclaim as the twentieth century's first international black female sex symbol, but kept carefully hidden her many sexual liaisons with women, which continued from adolescence to the end of her life.
 
Cadmus, Paul Cadmus, Paul
American painter Paul Cadmus is best known for the satiric innocence of his frequently censored paintings of burly men in skin-tight clothes, but he also created works that celebrate same-sex domesticity.
 
Caja, Jerome
San Francisco visual artist Jerome Caja is known for his small, sensuous combinations of found objects, which he painted with nail polish, makeup, and glitter, as well as for his drag performances.
 
Photography: Gay Male, Pre-Stonewall Photography: Gay Male, Pre-Stonewall
Although sparse in images documenting the gay community, pre-Stonewall gay male photography blurs the boundaries between art, erotica, and social history.
 
Drag Shows: Drag Queens and Female Impersonators Drag Shows: Drag Queens and Female Impersonators
Female impersonation need say nothing about sexual identity, but it has for a long time been almost an institutionalized aspect of gay male culture.
 
Erotic and Pornographic Art: Gay Male Erotic and Pornographic Art: Gay Male
Given the historic stigma around making, circulating, and possessing overtly homoerotic images, the visual arts have been especially important for providing a socially sanctioned arena for depicting the naked male body and suggesting homoerotic desire.
 
Topics In the News
 
New Jersey Bans Reparative Therapy for Minors
Posted by: Claude J. Summers on 08/19/13
Last updated on: 11/09/13
 
Bookmark and Share


High School senior Jacob Rudolph: "I am not broken. I am not confused. I do not need to be fixed."

On August 19, 2013, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into law a bill banning reparative therapy, also known as sexual orientation conversion therapy, for minors. The signing makes New Jersey the second state to prohibit such therapies for minors. The bill had been passed by the New Jersey legislature by large bipartisan margins, but there was some doubt that Christie would sign it, allow it to become law without his signature, or veto it.

Christie issued the following "signing statement" in which he explained his decision to sign the legislation:

Assembly Bill No. 3371, which I have signed today, prohibits individuals who are licensed to provide professional counseling under Title 45 of the New Jersey statutes from attempting to change a minor's sexual orientation.

At the outset of this debate, I expressed my concerns about government limiting parental choice on the care and treatment of their own children. I still have those concerns. Government should tread carefully into this area and I do so here reluctantly. I have scrutinized this piece of legislation with that concern in mind.

However, I also believe that on issues of medical treatment for children we must look to experts in the field to determine the relative risks and rewards. The American Psychological Association has found that efforts to change sexual orientation can pose critical health risks including, but not limited to, depression, substance abuse, social withdrawal, decreased self-esteem and suicidal thoughts.

I believe that exposing children to these health risks without clear evidence of benefits that outweigh these serious risks is not appropriate. Based upon this analysis, I sign this bill into law."

In a press release, the Governor pointed out that he has previously stated that he was opposed to conversion therapy and that "his action on this bill is consistent with his belief that people are born gay and homosexuality is not a sin."

On September 29, 2012, Governor Jerry Brown of California signed into law a similar bill. In doing so, Brown said, "This bill bans non-scientific 'therapies' that have driven young people to depression and suicide. These practices have no basis in science or medicine and they will now be relegated to the dustbin of quackery."

However, the California law has been challenged in federal court as unconstitutionally limiting freedom of speech. A decision in that case is expected soon.

Many analysts are discussing how Christie's decision to sign the bill will affect his presidential aspirations, particularly his chances of winning the Republican nomination.

Christie could have allowed the bill to become law without his signature. But to have done that may have made him appear indecisive or cowardly. Had he vetoed the bill, the veto may have been overridden by the legislature, and that would have made him appear weak. Moreover, given his earlier statements opposing conversion therapy, a veto would have made it appear that he was pandering to right-wing extremists in the Republican Party.

The decision to sign the bill will no doubt be popular in New Jersey and in the nation as a whole, but it is likely to be rouse the ire of Christian Evangelicals who support the "ex-gay" movement and who promote reparative therapy.

The reparative therapy movement is rooted in the work of 1960s psychologists such as Irving Bieber and Charles Socarides, who claimed that homosexuality was both pathological and susceptible to change. When their position was repudiated by the 1973 decision of the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from the category of "illness," they launched a counter-offensive against the views of the psychological and psychiatric establishment.

In 1992, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) was established. Led by Joseph Nicolosi and Charles Socarides, and funded largely by right-wing religious and political organizations, NARTH is self-described as "a non-profit, educational organization dedicated to affirming a complementary, male-female model of gender and sexuality." It essentially espouses the view of homosexuality that was dominant in the 1950s and 1960s: that a homosexual "preference" results from a developmental problem, especially a child's failure to identify properly with adult figures of the same gender.

Sexual orientation change efforts pose serious health risks, including depression, shame, decreased self-esteem, social withdrawal, substance abuse, self-harm, and suicide. For minors, who are often subjected to these practices at the insistence of misled parents who either do not know or do not believe that the practice is harmful, the risks of long-term mental and physical health consequences are particularly severe.

On March 19, 2013, Parsippany, New Jersey high school senior Jacob Rudolph delivered moving testimony to the Health Committee of the New Jersey Senate, as it considered the bill that Christie signed into law. Rudolph said, "I am not broken. I am not confused. I do not need to be fixed."

The video below is of Rudolph's speech before the Senate Health Committee on March 19, 2013.

 
Related Encyclopedia Entries
 
browse:   arts   literature   social-sciences   discussion boards
 
learn more about glbtq       contact us       advertise on glbtq.com
 
Bookmark and Share

glbtq™ and its logo are trademarks of glbtq, Inc.
This site and its contents Copyright © 2002-2014, glbtq, Inc.

Your use of this site indicates that you accept its Terms of Service.