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The headline is sensational and does what headlines are supposed to do – it grabs your attention:
“California Bans Heterosexuality.”
After my initial shock, I settled down and read the story under the headline and quickly learned, to my great relief, that the Golden State hasn’t really banned heterosexuality – at least not yet.
The story turns out to be the latest anti-gay rant from Linda Harvey’s Columbus, Ohio-based website, Mission: America, whose subtitle is “Christian Commentary on the Culture.” Her outfit is listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which publishes this blog.
In this case, the commentary is about California Gov. Jerry Brown signing a bill on Saturday that made his state the first in the country to prohibit mental health providers from subjecting LGBT children and teens to therapy intended to change their sexual orientation.
“This bill bans nonscientific ‘therapies’ that have driven young people to depression and suicide,” The New York Times quoted the governor as saying in a statement after he signed the bill into law. “These practices have no basis in science or medicine, and they will be relegated to the dustbin of quackery.”
Needless to say, Mission: America sees the bill in a much different light.
“California Governor Jerry Brown just signed a law that essentially removes choice for most teens with homosexual attractions, except to enter that sinful and high risk lifestyle,” the commentary says. “Counselors cannot warn them or steer them away from these desires.
“What’s next, ‘LGBT’ loyalty oaths?”
On her website, Harvey calls what she does a “media ministry’’ and an outgrowth of her “Christian faith and a successful career in journalism, marketing and public relations.” Her on-line bio goes on to say she founded Mission: America in 1995 as “a non-profit organization whose objective is to equip Christians with current, accurate information” – like California’s ban on heterosexuality? – “about cultural issues such as feminism, homosexuality, education and New Age influences.’’
Gathered together on the site, under the heading “The ‘Gay’ Agenda Targeting Youth,” are some of the many articles she has written about her fears of a gay planet. They include: “How Homosexual Friends Can Influence Our Kids,” “Protecting Youth Against Homosexuality: A Plan for Churches,” and “Grooming Kids in a ‘Gay’ Identity is Like Penn State Abuse.’’
Here’s another headline for you: “California Bans Heterosexual Bigots.” Come on, governor, the dustbin has plenty of room.