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Va. House panel kills bill banning conversion therapy for LGBT youth

Thursday, January 30, 2014

RICHMOND — A Virginia House of Delegates committee killed off proposed legislation Thursday that would have banned controversial gay-to-straight conversion therapy for LGBT youth.

Virginia state capitol in Richmond.

Virginia state capitol in Richmond.

After hours of testimony from supporters and opponents of the proposed ban, members of the House Health, Welfare and Institutions subcommittee killed the bill on a 4-1 party line vote.

The language of the bill only dealt with licensed therapists treating people under 18. Adults seeking the treatment still would have been free to do so.

Del. Patrick Hope (D-Arlington County, Va.), the bill’s sponsor, said he believes the therapy will eventually be banned for children in Virginia, as it is currently in California and New Jersey.

“Hearts and minds are changing on this sexual orientation issue every day,” he said. “One day this will be the law in Virginia.… It’s time we had this conversation.”

Lawmakers in Maryland, Minnesota and New York have also introduced legislation to prohibit the use of conversion therapy, also referred to as reparative therapy, on LGBT youth. Massachusetts and Pennsylvania’s lawmakers introduced similar measures last year.

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Nationally, the fight against reparative therapy has been met with push back from faith activists who say the bill limits freedom of religion and speech.

Del. Jon S. Cardin (D-Baltimore County, Md.) who authored the Maryland bill noted that “major medical and psychological organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Psychological Association and the American Psychiatric Association have recognized that being gay is not a disease or a choice.”

“It is not something you can change with any therapy. Attempting to change sexual orientation with ‘therapy’ does a child far more harm than good,” he said.

On Wednesday, a federal appeals court refused to reconsider its ruling upholding California’s ban on the practice.

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80 more reader comments:

  1. WHAT THE FUCK?!

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:44pm
  2. torture is not therapy…

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:45pm
  3. That’s Virginia for you.

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:47pm
  4. ffs…. this should be illegal everywhere

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:48pm
  5. What’s wrong with these people? VOTE THEM OUT!

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:50pm
  6. Poor kids the “love” of their parents will destroy them.

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:53pm
  7. Some ass’es anatomies at work here.

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:54pm
  8. What the fuck is wrong with these people!

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:54pm
  9. apparently a lot.

    Replied on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:58pm
  10. One reason I left.

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:54pm
  11. Idiots….

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:56pm
  12. Shameful. This will come back to haunt them.

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:58pm
  13. bigots

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:58pm
  14. Isn’t ‘conversion therapy’ a form of cruel and unusual punishment or something? :/

    Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 11:58pm
  15. Yes. It forces people to be someone they aren't.

    Replied on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:32am
  16. It also causes massive brain damage and psychological discorders

    Replied on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:08am
  17. It's torture and "brain washing techniques"...

    Replied on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 7:10am
  18. Ariel Marie Hebert, you hit the nail on the head. IT SHOULD NOT BE LEGAL.

    Replied on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 8:14pm
  19. They should concentrate on actual problems like poverty and unemployment. Or if they want therapy sessions do it with people who is depressed, and actually needs helps maybe. I dunno but gay doesnt need talking therapy, its like trying to heal a blind with physical therapy.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:00am
  20. Just another reason I wont live there.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:00am
  21. What a bunch of morons. It amazes my the amount of stupidity in our country n

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:04am
  22. good to see Christians in action.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:06am
  23. How ignorant do people have to be?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:07am
  24. So let’s scar kids for life and have them grow up to be miserable human beings.. That’s always good.. Smh

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:14am
  25. I like your style.

    Replied on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:26am
  26. Bullying children is not protected under free speech or freedom of religion. There is no constitutional right to harm children.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:16am
  27. you are so very right on this !!! we have got to stop these nut jobs from harming kid,s !!

    Replied on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:07am
  28. So it is still OK to market & sell a cure

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:18am
  29. Pigs

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:18am
  30. “cure” for a non-exsistent disease, isn’t that fraud ??

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:19am
  31. Shames me that my state is basically Virginia’s neighbor.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:25am
  32. Ya child abuse is ok there u can beat .rape and torture your child all u like there and use religion to ok it

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:28am
  33. I was brainwashed by a church, cult, whatever u want to call ‘them’ and it caused serious damage… This shit is unnecessary & dangerous to the adolescents, children…. Whoever due to the psychological ramifications. There’s NOTHING wrong with us!! It’s THEM.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:31am
  34. Oh…. And it didn’t work

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:32am
  35. SHAME ON THEM!!!!!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:32am
  36. Yeah….

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:32am
  37. Weren’t the Salem Witch trials held on these same philosophies? I forgot how did they work out again?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:34am
  38. PEOPLE ARE WHO THEY ARE

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:39am
  39. NO surprise here..

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:47am
  40. Back to torture as a pretense of “medicine” inquisition but with drugs and electricity.

    Maybe all those who voted to kill this bill should be given 2 weeks of “therapy” to change their minds.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:50am
  41. Not sure how “medical” practitioners can even bill for this, since its no longer an ICD-9 code, and not considered an illness anymore?!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:58am
  42. This is sick. Proof that Virginia has a very long way to go before they’re one of the equality states.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:58am
  43. We need a federal ban.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:07am
  44. So, they must be ready for kids killing themselves.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:18am
  45. When are these Homo Stultus, knuckle dragging assholes going to realize that you can NOT fix what is NOT broken?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:22am
  46. So annoyed by my state.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:31am
  47. It must be a Federal Ban!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:35am
  48. That is BULLSHIT!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:36am
  49. These frigging people don’t give up trying to run other people’s lives!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:50am
  50. Since killing Bill is a felony, the legislators should be sentenced to death.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:58am
  51. sickening.. =/

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:37am
  52. What is wrong with those people?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:40am
  53. Reparitive therapy has been proven to do irreparable harm to kids, why would adults do this to there children?Why would the law allow this?that is the question?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:40am
  54. It has very little if any legal support.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:56am
  55. How many kids have they damaged with this ?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:05am
  56. LGBTQ teens do not need to be bullied into taking a snake oil therapy that ends up with them suppressing who they are until they finally rebel or commit suicide.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:40am
  57. this Is discusting

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:54am
  58. down with tje evil gop they are monsters

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:54am
  59. the house should be ashamed

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:55am
  60. the majorety of amarica is discusted with there lack of progress and there unwilingness to help vote the fuckers out and keep them out

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:56am
  61. Those disgusting bigots!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 5:07am
  62. I thought this shit went away years ago…..fucken idiots!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 6:50am
  63. Poor kids

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 8:30am
  64. GOP Taliban at it again!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 9:43am
  65. …land of the free? yeah, right

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:01pm
  66. “I’ll give you some ‘Change’ Mr. Barack Obama” – http://buddhalightbringer.wordpress.com/2014/01/28/hallelujah-jesus-father-was-a-homosexual

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 12:29pm
  67. idiots! How about conversion therapy to make straight people smarter and less cruel!!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:01pm
  68. i am proud of Robert Coats for taking time to speak to the General Assembly. i’m looking forward to sunday to get a more details when he will talk about it during prayer request/praise time at church.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:43pm
  69. This is what you get when religion has too much influence in politics.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 2:03pm
  70. WELCOME TO AMERICA: but not Virginia…GOD mades Gay Men in the Image of His Son…you can not, at all, convert this genetic code…it is sad that men and women still live in total ignorance in the State of Virginia…KEEP OUT OF VIRGINIA…

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 2:27pm
  71. Tall people need to be converted to normal height. Normal height is godly (david and goliath) and tallness is a choice and a challenge to god’s bigness. This gay conversion thing makes less sense than tallness conversion, even in medieval Virginia. How about converting small brains of politicians to big ones?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 3:59pm
  72. It figures. These “good christians” want to keep torturing kids. Idiots.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 4:55pm
  73. The solution is for every American to vote straight line Democrat in November to rid the Congress of this ignorance, hatred, and persecution by the Republican Party of anyone not in the top financial 1%, male, heterosexual, and fundamentalist “Christian.” Given the Republicans’ redistricting and various voter suppression tactics, make sure your vote is counted!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 5:29pm
  74. Rubes

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 5:36pm
  75. It’s the south, why are we surprised?

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 6:19pm
  76. By all means…pray away the gay you effing morons.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 7:05pm
  77. Oh so sad!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 7:41pm
  78. WHAT??? BS BS BS

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 8:13pm
  79. So sad to do this in 2014!

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 10:18pm
  80. I’m hoping they will then forgive any attempts to defend oneself against it, including using deadly force, under ‘stand your ground’.

    Posted on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 11:19pm