Letter: 'Gay conversion' is a dangerous pseudoscience

'Gay conversion' is failed pseudoscience

To the editor:

Regarding Robin Greenspan's Feb. 15 letter, "Gay conversion therapy has worked for many," it also has failed for many people. It has failed for so many that even some of its core supporters have not only suspended the practice, but closed their business, and apologized for their harmful actions. One must certainly be suspicious of a movement whose core supporters, Exodus International, not only ceased operations, but whose leader, Alan Chambers, publicly apologized.

While I would not be surprised that some people have found comfort in this therapy, it cannot be denied that it has left others with terrible demons to face, and that some have sacrificed their lives to its practice.

New York Governor Cuomo has not outlawed the practice, he has merely implemented policies that state that insurance need not pay for the unscientific and unproven therapy.

We probably should shun "medical treatments" that are unproven and unaccepted by ALL of the major mainstream groups governing modern medicine. There isn't a single reputable medical, scientific, or academic organization that supports "reparative therapy," and the American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Physicians, American Counseling Association, American Medical Association, American Psychiatric Association, American Psychoanalytic Association, American Psychological Association, are all among the therapy's detractors.

If Eli has seen improvement in his life, I am happy for him, but that doesn't change the reality that pseudoscience does not help the majority of people who come into contact with it, and some are irreparably harmed.

Governor Cuomo's actions do not ban the practice of "reparative therapy," they merely puts a price upon charlatanism, even if it does help a few people.

Brian W. Barnett, Glendale


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