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“Gay” pride day. “Gay” pride week. “Gay” pride month. “Gay” pride parades. “Gay” clubs. “Gay” rights. Promoters of the homosexual lifestyle now have a wealth of special designations and privileges after claiming to be victims of discrimination for so many years.

Now, it’s homosexuals who are being accused of discrimination against people who describe themselves as “ex-gay.”

The ex-gay community has begun to fight back with its declaration that September is Ex-Gay Pride Awareness Month.

The advocacy group Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays, or PFOX, said it’s the first event to recognize the plight of former homosexuals.

“Why does the ex-gay community need civil rights?” PFOX asks. “Because in their quest for cultural dominance, gay activists have changed their strategy from seeking equality for the 3.9 percent of LGBT Americans to silencing any of the 96.1 percent who disagree with their agenda. This includes former homosexuals, whose voices are routinely marginalized, maligned, and minimized in the media and public sector.”

Christopher Doyle, co-founder and president of Voice of the Voiceless, said that for decades, LGBT Americans “were discriminated against and subject to violence and harassment, and that’s wrong.”

“But now, these same activists who fought against prejudice are trying to take away the rights of individuals who desire to change from gay to straight, and that’s also wrong,” he said. “Two wrongs don’t make a right.”

Doyle’s group describes itself as the only anti-defamation league for former homosexuals, individuals with unwanted same-sex attractions and their families.

Among the recent challenges to the rights of former homosexuals: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed a law outlawing therapy for children who wish to overcome unwanted same-sex attractions, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed California’s similar law and an entertainer was rejected because he is “ex-gay.”

Dr. James E. de Jarnette, a psychological expert witness and clinician, told WND regarding the ban on therapy: “The law seems to be intended to prevent others from forcing a child to get counseling if the child wishes to be gay. Children who wish to change from their predilection of being gay should also be allowed the same right to counseling.”

Psychotherapist David Pickup said this is especially true for victims of pedophiles. In many cases, the child victims of pedophiles do not want to live as “gay” people, he said, but are confused about their gender identity after the violations occur.

A new California law, SB 1172, may leave Pickup and other therapists with no option but to counsel child victims of pedophiles to become “gay.”

The law bars doctors, psychologists, family therapists and social workers from providing sexual-orientation conversion therapy to patients under 18. Violators are subject to discipline by state licensing entities.

The case has prompted legal action, which now is pending before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Mat Staver, chief counsel of Liberty Counsel, who is the attorney for the therapists seeking to overturn the law, said there’s no evidence that minors are harmed by the counseling.

He asserts enforcing the law would cause “irreparable harm for our clients.”

“They would not be able to get the counseling that has benefited them, helped their self- esteem,” he said.

Pickup, the plaintiff in the lawsuit against California, said politicians are ignoring the pain, confusion and anguish that he has seen in his patients.

“Many argue over the question of whether or not religious-based counseling can impose faith-based values on someone ‘born gay.’ But those who counsel children say that when abuse is the origin of the confusion, this isn’t about who was born gay. Any child can be violated and any child who is violated can have sexual identity confusion issues that they need to work through,” he said.

He maintains that the new law ignores child victims of sexual abuse.

Pickup said he was violated by a pedophile when he was a child. Without therapists to help him, he could have been convinced he was truly “gay,” but he is not, he said. He is among a growing minority of “ex-gays” who reject the state’s presumption that anyone who ever has “gay” feelings must assume they are “gay” and be denied access to therapy.

An interview with Pickup:

He told WND an 18-year old youth informed him just weeks ago that he would have committed suicide had he not had help to resolve his homosexual attractions. Through therapy he was able to resolve the pain and unmet core identity needs that were causing his confusion, the doctor said.

Pickup and PFOX, along with other therapists, say that these critical rights of children need to be taken seriously. They say these children are being ostracized for being themselves.

“This law is so broad, that in order to help one group of children, it is damaging other groups of children,” Pickup told WND.

Doyle, a psychotherapist and director of the International Healing Foundation, co-founded Voice of the Voiceless because, he said, former homosexuals like himself endure the harshest forms of discrimination.

For several years PFOX distributed an ex-”gay” flier promoting tolerance for all in a basic Q&A format to public high school students in Montgomery County, Md.

Last year Superintendent Joshua Starr, while attending a student town hall meeting during school hours, told students that he found the ex-”gay” message to be “really, really disgusting.”

In an effort to support homosexuality and limit the message from former homosexuals, the school ultimately shut down its entire program allowing groups to distribute information to students.

Doyle said that in February, “gay” activists in the psychological department within Prince George’s County, Md., school district successfully had Doyle’s prevention film and curriculum removed.

The curriculum, called “Acception, ” was being implemented in middle schools. The district objected to a part of the film and curriculum that taught that people with “Same-Sex Attraction ,” or SSA, can change if they desire. Doyle contends that the “gay” activists were intolerant that he was ex-”gay,” and they did not want ex-”gays” promoting and influencing sexuality policy in the county.

Doyle and his colleagues see it as an issue of choice for kids.

“Some children experience same-sex attraction and later identify as gay, while others choose to respond differently to those feelings. For these teenagers, identifying as gay may conflict with their values, faith, and/or who they really believe they are at their core. In some cases, they may experience homosexual feelings due to sexual abuse; they and their parents should have the right to seek treatment to resolve unwanted same-sex attraction as the result of that abuse, regardless of political correctness. It ultimately comes down to self-identification. A child should not be forced to identify as gay merely because they experience homosexual feelings. There may be many reasons why their homosexual feelings occur, and a child and parent should have the right to explore those reasons with a mental health professional.”

Ellen Kahn of the Human Rights campaign says it is inappropriate to tell children they have a choice. But Doyle says “everyone deserves to live a life that makes them feel loved.”

Doyle’s group also is looking for a legal team that will take its case pro bono. Doyle believes it’s a unique opportunity to sue for sexual orientation discrimination in Washington, D.C., where ex-”gays” are a protected class.

According to PFOX, the attack on ex-”gays” has been orchestrated carefully by homosexuals who infiltrate mental and medical health organizations and go about destigmatizing homosexuality.

They face a very real battle, because much of the argument for homosexuality being a protected class is that people are born that way and have no choice. The existence of former homosexuals undermines completely that argument.

PFOX officials note that African-American Grammy award-winning gospel singer Donnie McClurkin recently suffered discrimination when Washington, D.C., Mayor Vincent Gray appeased homosexual activists who wanted McClurkin dropped from a 50th Anniversary March program.

“The demonization of ex-gays by gays themselves is a sad end to the long struggle for tolerance by the gay community,” commented former homosexual Greg Quinlan, a board member for PFOX. “That ex-gays are now oppressed by the same people who until recently were victimized themselves demonstrates how low the gay rights movement has gone. The victims have now become politically powerful oppressors.”

Several former homosexuals even made a plea to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy to protect them from discrimination, because in his ruling on the federal Defense of Marriage Act, he cited “animus” against homosexuals.

One ex-”gay” speaker, Grace Harley, who left homosexuality 20 years ago, made a plea to Kennedy: “Former homosexuals like me need protection from discrimination more than anyone else. We are the victims of hate. We are ridiculed and condemned. I have suffered more discrimination and intolerance as an ex-gay than I ever did when I was gay. Many ex-gays are afraid to come out of the closet because of the harassment they will receive. Transgenders are celebrated for changing their gender but former homosexuals are ridiculed for changing their sexual orientation.”

She continued: “Ex-gays are denied their pursuit of happiness because they are persecuted. This irrational hatred of those who have overcome unwanted same-sex attractions creates misunderstanding and harm against the ex-gay community. Justice Kennedy, you protect gay people as an unpopular minority, but ex-gays are hated even by gays, so please protect former homosexuals like me. We need your protection and your compassion. To give sexual orientation protection to one group while excluding another is outright discrimination. This is not what our country is about.”

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