Founder of “conversion therapy” comes out as gay - apologizes

 
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03 September 2019 20:54
 

Well, now. . .

The former leader of one of the nation’s largest conversion therapy ministries has come out as gay. Now, McKrae Game is disavowing the organization he founded and apologizing to the people he’s hurt.
Game dedicated his life to conversion therapy through his organization, Hope for Wholeness. During an interview last week, he denounced the practice he spent 20 years supporting.
“Conversion therapy is not just a lie, but it’s very harmful,” Game told The Post and Courier newspaper in Charleston, South Carolina. “Because it’s false advertising.”

Because the forum software blacklists web sites with the word “gay” in the address, you’ll need to find the story yourself.  The quote above is from CBS News.

 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
 
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TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
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06 September 2019 14:50
 

I found the article.

It makes one think.  What kind of man was he while pushing conversion therapy?  Was he hurtful toward others because he was hurting?  Was he in denial, and thus unaware of how much he was hurting others, and hurting himself?  Just what can you really tell about a person from his actions—what’s in his heart, his deepest motives, his sincerity…where in resides his virtue or vice, his good or evil…

It is a curious redemption story, almost tragic, in a way.  I noticed he was fired in 2017, but it’s unclear why.  Did he confess or was he exposed?  Either way, I feel for him.  It must be agony to live with such inner conflict, and one ultimately self-inflicted through the duality of trying to be oneself while living with others.  I hope he can find peace through making what amends he can.

 
Brick Bungalow
 
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Brick Bungalow
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06 September 2019 15:04
 

Oddly enough I read the story as reported and editorialized by Christianity Today. There wasn’t anything surprising about their take. They simply said he was wrong and they found several people to testify that he had always been psychologically unstable and therefore not trust worthy to report on his own experience.

All I can really say is that I’m really sad and depressed for the teens and young adults who are cornered and blackmailed by this stuff. It’s quite personal for me and not something I can really evaluate from a critical distance.

I’m happy and grateful for brave souls like this. I know that he is threatened and abused daily for his trouble.

 
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06 September 2019 18:25
 

This is another example of the damage we do when we divide ourselves from each other along arbitrary, immutable characteristics.

Years ago, when homosexuality was very much a mystery to me, meaning I heard of it but could not visualize two men kissing, mainly because I had no desire to kiss another man, I read an account by a gay man of his move to San Francisco because he thought he might be gay.  He moved in temporarily with a husband and wife friend in the city, and shortly after arriving and experiencing the gay community he came to realize he was gay.  He wanted to tell his friends but was unsure what their reaction would be and he did not want to jeopardize his living arrangement.  He decided to tell the wife, very confidentially, because he thought she would be the more understanding of the couple.  He sheepishly and fitfully came out to her, saying, “I think I’m gay. . .”  She stared at him and slowly whispered back, “I don’t care.”  That was all he needed to hear to feel safe and welcome, and it made all the difference, and so did the story for me.

I kept that story in mind, and many years later, while working as a sales rep, I emailed a client a picture of a pretty woman in a bikini, and he responded cryptically along the lines that I didn’t get it.  I emailed back, “What’s not to get?  She’s hot!”  Then my phone rang and it was my client, and he said, “I’m gay.”  I replied, “Hang up.  I’ll try again.”  I found a photo of a gorgeous nearly naked man and sent it to him.  The phone rang right away and it was my client, and he said, “What, no beefcake?  That’s not good enough.”

As a resident of the SF Bay Area, if I was to limit myself to interacting with “my kind” or spending time hating on people not like me I would have very few people to speak with.  There is no advantage to restricting myself to only the right kind of people.

 
LadyJane
 
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07 September 2019 07:34
 

This comes as no surprise.  I’m always suspicious when people seem overly interested in the private lives of strangers and want to control what everyone else is doing.  It exposes a deeper secret underneath and the hard sell is a real turn off.  I remember people throwing the word “fag” around as a fairly common insult that didn’t necessarily have anything to do with homosexuality.  I imagine it landed that way to every gay person who heard it though.  I never really cared much about the romantic preferences of others, and love androgyny, coz it forces you to cut through the stereotypes and focus on the person.  I don’t know.  I think meeting The Kids in the Hall in the early nineties permanently shifted my perspective in that regard by helping me understand the true value of free expression.  It certainly didn’t hurt.

 
 
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EN
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07 September 2019 19:36
 

Gay conversion therapy is bullshit. It’s all based on a particular interpretation of the Bible, which is not shared by all Christians. If Christians would just stay out of this realm and care for the downtrodden, like they are are supposed to, they would be more respected. They can’t seem to stay out of other people’s business. On behalf of them all, I apologize.

 
RaplhCramden
 
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RaplhCramden
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27 September 2019 12:03
 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher - 06 September 2019 02:50 PM

It makes one think.  What kind of man was he while pushing conversion therapy?  Was he hurtful toward others because he was hurting?  Was he in denial, and thus unaware of how much he was hurting others, and hurting himself?  Just what can you really tell about a person from his actions—what’s in his heart, his deepest motives, his sincerity…where in resides his virtue or vice, his good or evil…

A good friend of mine from college came to visit me about 5 years after we graduated to let me know that he was gay.  He had been rejecting any evidence or feeling of gay, he did not want to be gay!  Between graduating and my seeing him 5 years later, he had gone to a psychologist for conversion therapy, no religious component to it, nobody selling him on it.  Just pure I-sure-wish-I-was-straight attempt to address a problem, like working out in a gym to get buff, going to school to get educated, or doing physical therapy to gain function. 

As it turns out, he realized his effort was futile, gave it up, and made peace with being gay.  He has been out and happily married for decades.

The interesting thing to realize: if conversion therapy HAD worked, he would have become straight, and probably gone off and been happily married for decades.  The problem with conversion therapy isn’t that it is stupid or evil or you have to have something wrong with you to want it or think it will work.  The problem with conversion therapy is that it does not work.  Or if it does work, it is for an extremely small number of people. 

Of course, having available the information that it doesn’t work would make recommending it or pushing it a Bad Thing.  But if it did work, then it would make as much sense to be against conversion therapy as it would be to be against offering services to help people realize their transexual desires. 

R:

 

 
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27 September 2019 12:23
 
RaplhCramden - 27 September 2019 12:03 PM

A good friend of mine from college came to visit me about 5 years after we graduated to let me know that he was gay.  He had been rejecting any evidence or feeling of gay, he did not want to be gay!  Between graduating and my seeing him 5 years later, he had gone to a psychologist for conversion therapy, no religious component to it, nobody selling him on it.  Just pure I-sure-wish-I-was-straight attempt to address a problem, like working out in a gym to get buff, going to school to get educated, or doing physical therapy to gain function. 

As it turns out, he realized his effort was futile, gave it up, and made peace with being gay.  He has been out and happily married for decades.

The interesting thing to realize: if conversion therapy HAD worked, he would have become straight, and probably gone off and been happily married for decades.  The problem with conversion therapy isn’t that it is stupid or evil or you have to have something wrong with you to want it or think it will work.  The problem with conversion therapy is that it does not work.  Or if it does work, it is for an extremely small number of people. 

Of course, having available the information that it doesn’t work would make recommending it or pushing it a Bad Thing.  But if it did work, then it would make as much sense to be against conversion therapy as it would be to be against offering services to help people realize their transexual desires. 

R:

The whole point of conversion therapy is that it’s built on the premise that there is something ‘wrong’ with being homosexual and that it’s a choice.  Of course it doesn’t work, but the problem IS with the goal itself – an attempt to change someone into something they are not, based on prejudice and/or archaic religion-based moral codes.