Why “conversion therapy bans” are really about banning Christian preaching, teaching, pastoral support

By Jonathon Van Maren

Proponents of the so-called “conversion therapy bans” cropping up in many Western countries have a very simple and very compelling public rationalization for these laws. These laws, they claim, are necessary to prevent young people from being forced into dangerous and discredited therapies that attempt to alter who they are. The phrase “conversion therapy,” which has generally been used to refer to abusive practices such as electroshock therapy and conjures up ugly images almost immediately, has been used very intentionally. What humane person, after all, could oppose banning that? Even the United Nations has called on member nations to get on board.

Of course, these so-called “conversion therapy bans” are actually designed to do far more than ban practices that already attract universal condemnation. The bylaw recently passed in Calgary, for example, could jail parents and criminalize Christian speech, as even having pastoral conversations about unwanted same-sex attraction or genuine gender confusion could be covered. Based on definitions of “hate” and “cruelty” used by most LGBT activists, it is safe to assume that this is their intention. The “conversion therapy ban” currently being proposed by Trudeau’s Liberals could theoretically send parents to jail for opposing sex changes for their children.

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