Texas Democrats Want To Ban Gay 'Reparative Therapy'

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One of the most foul things to come out of the Texas GOP platform this year was Republicans' support for gay “reparative therapy,” a pseudo-medical procedure that claims to turn gay people straight. (It doesn't.)

Reparative therapy, or gay conversion therapy, is nationally condemned by every major health group and organization in the country. It has been recognized to cause severe psychological pain to LGBT individuals, especially LGBT youth forced to undergo attempts to try to change their true identity.

Texas Democrats are taking a stand on behalf of the LGBT community, calling in their 2014 platform for a ban on all gay conversion practices in the state. Support for LGBT Texans goes even further, calling for sanctions against any practitioner who engages in reparative therapy.

Read what the platform states in support of the LGBT community below the jump.Reiterating their support for full marriage equality, Texas Democrats also included support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), accurate identity documents for Trans folks, and education on LGBT issues for service professionals. Democrats had previously stated support for these causes in their 2012 platform.

This year, the very first section under the “Personal Security and Equal Protection for LGBTQ Texans” plank includes support for a ban on reparative therapy:

PERSONAL SECURITY AND EQUAL PROTECTION FOR LGBTQ TEXANS

Personal Security: Ban Reparative Therapy

For decades it has been beyond dispute by health professionals that homosexuality is a normal, natural and positive variation of human sexual orientation. Similarly, it is clear that a person's gender identity – one's inner sense of being male or female – is deep-seated and cannot be changed. Yet, in 2014, the Republican Party of Texas continues to encourage violence against the very souls of LGBTQ people through the quackery known as “reparative therapy” which is now illegal in two states. Texas Democrats strongly oppose the use of any public funding for this demonstrably harmful practice. We further call on the Texas Medical Board, the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists, and the Texas Department of State Health Services to fully investigate and to sanction any practitioner who engages in reparative therapy.

As mentioned in the platform, only two states currently ban reparative therapy — New Jersey and California. On Monday, the Supreme Court declined to review California's ban on gay conversion therapy for minors, essentially upholding the state's law.

State Sen. Wendy Davis says she supports a ban on reparative therapy and would sign a law as governor banning it across the state.  

About Author

Omar Araiza

Staff writer Omar Araiza covers immigration, Latino voters, the U.S.-Mexico border, and LGBT issues. He is a proud South Texas native, born and raised in the lower Rio Grande Valley. Omar tweets from @AraizaTX.

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