The ink in California Gov. Jerry Brown's signature was barely dry on a controversial law restricting what therapists can tell their patients before the first lawsuits against the state were announced.
"Of all the freedom-killing bills we have seen in our legislature the last several years, this is among the worst," said Brad Dacus, president of Pacific Justice Institute.
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"This outrageous bill makes no exceptions for young victims of sexual abuse who are plagued with unwanted same-sex attraction, nor does it respect the consciences of mental health professionals who work in a church.
"We are filing suit to defend families, children, and religious freedom," he said today. "This unprecedented bill is outrageously unconstitutional."
The proposal this year worked its way through the California legislature, which previously demanded that school children "celebrate" the life of pedophile Harvey Milk and banned any negative discussions about being "gay," such as the short expected lifespan.
It forbids therapy that would counsel a minor to not pursue same-sex attractions or feelings. Brown signed it into law over the weekend.
Dacus earlier called it "one of the most outrageous, speech-chilling bills we have ever seen in California – and that's saying a lot."
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Developed at the behest of homosexual advocates, SB 1172 limits the ability of psychologists, therapists and others to help clients who want to change their sexual orientation.
The plan flatly bans the advice for minors, regardless of what the minor and his or her parents desire. It also demands a new consent form from adults that includes statements about sexual orientation with which many counselors disagree.
Ultimately, it creates essentially an open-ended civil liability for engaging in such speech.
Mathew McReynolds of PJI told WND earlier: "The bill claims that sexually confused youth who experience 'family rejection … face especially serious health risks' and the state has a 'compelling interest' to protect their health. The logical implication from these two assertions is that the state is giving itself the power to take kids away from parents who do not affirm the kids' sexual confusion."
The effort, he said, is nothing more or less than allowing "the government to step into the counseling room or doctor's office and clamp a hand over the mouth of a professional who is asked by a patient for help with sexual identity issues."
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Pacific Justice, which has led the fight against the bill since its introduction last spring by Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, had sent staff members to lawmakers repeatedly to warn of the plan's unconstitutionality.
Their lawsuit is pending in federal court in Sacramento, they said.
In addition, another case has been announced by Liberty Counsel on behalf of counselors; parents and their minor children; and the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality.
Liberty Counsel cited Brown's statement that change therapy – designed to help those who desire to leave behind same-sex attraction – "will now be relegated to the dustbin of quackery."
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"The California governor and legislature are putting their own preconceived notions and political ideology ahead of children and their rights to get access to counseling that meets their needs," said Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel.
"A number of minors who have struggled with same-sex attraction have been able to reduce or eliminate the stress and conflicts in their lives by receiving counseling of their choice which best meets their needs and religious convictions. This bill will harm children, stress families, and place counselors in a catch-22, because they will be forced to violate their licensing ethical codes," said Staver.
He said the law defines "sexual orientation change efforts" as any practice that is designed to reduce or eliminate same-sex attraction. But Liberty Counsel said such broad language will prohibit any counseling that does not affirm and encourage experimentation with or acceptance of same-sex attraction, regardless of whether those feelings and attractions are unwanted by the counselee.
Liberty Counsel said the bill not only prohibits this type of treatment, but it makes it an ethical violation for any counselor or therapist to engage in it.
But the case is raising the concern that if the counselor does not provide the client with such counseling or a source from which such counseling may be obtained when the client requests it, the counselor will also violate the ethical code of his license.
"We are filing on behalf of mental health professionals who find themselves in a Catch-22," Staver said.
He explained that therapists have an ethical obligation to help clients deal with conflict. If a client is experiencing conflict between religious beliefs and same-sex attractions and wants to prioritize those beliefs over such attractions, the counselor is ethically obligated to directly help or refer for help.
Under the law, the counselor will be forced to disregard the client’s religious beliefs or change them, he noted.
"This bill and the ethical codes of all of the licensing boards in California are on an inevitable collision course," Staver said. "The licenses of countless mental health professionals hang in the balance."
He also said the new law undermines parental rights.
Christopher Rosik, the president of NARTH, cited the sponsor's statement that the "attack on parental rights is exactly the whole point of the bill."
California lawmakers have built a long reputation for promoting a free-sex atmosphere in public schools. Majority Democrats on a California state legislative committee at one point killed a plan that would have cracked down on intimate relationships between school teachers and their students.
The unsuccessful Assembly Bill 1861 would have made it a felony if any teacher or employee of a public or private school "engages in a sexual relationship or inappropriate communications with a pupil."
"This is yet another reason for conscientious parents to flee the dysfunctional, immoral, and imploding government school system for church schools and home schools, which are much safer physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually," Randy Thomasson, president of SaveCalifornia.com, said at the time.
"Why are Democrat legislators supporting child sex abuse? Why don't they care about children's immature hearts and minds being immorally manipulated and sexually seduced by public school teachers," he continued. "It is certifiably evil that this bill to protect school children's bodies was defeated by this Democrat-controlled committee."
Thomasson's group promotes the Rescue Your Child website, which encourages parents to seek out church schools or homeschooling options for their children.
His group explains that already in California's public schools children as young as 5th and 7th grades are told they have the "individual" and "personal" right to engage in "respectful" sexual activity with anyone as long as it is consensual and males wear a condom.
California has adopted numerous sexual indoctrination bills, including SB48, which requires positive portrayals of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons in public school social studies and history classes.
Others cited by Thomasson's group:
- SB 543, signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2010, "allows school staff to remove children ages 12 and up from government schools and taken off-campus for counseling sessions, without parental permission or involvement. The purpose is to permit pro-homosexuality teachers and administrators to remove sexually confused children in 6th grade and up from campus and take them to pro-homosexuality counselors who will encourage them to embrace the homosexual lifestyle."
- ACR 82, approved by the California Legislature in 2010, "creates de facto 'morality-free zones' at participating schools (pre-kindergarten through public universities). Schools that become official 'Discrimination-Free Zones' will 'enact procedures' (including mandatory counseling) against students from pre-kindergarten on up who are accused of 'hate,' 'intolerance,' or 'discrimination'." What is the hate? Peacefully speaking or writing against the unnatural lifestyles choices of homosexuality and bisexuality.
- SB 572, signed by Schwarzenegger in 2009, establishes "Harvey Milk Day" in K-12 California public schools and community colleges. In classrooms, schools and school districts that participate, children will now be taught to admire the life and values of late homosexual activist and teen predator Harvey Milk of San Francisco the month of May.
- SB 777, signed by Schwarzenegger in 2007, prohibits all public school instruction and every school activity from "promoting a discriminatory bias" against (effectively requiring positive depictions of) transsexuality, bisexuality and homosexuality to schoolchildren as young as five years old. SB 777 means children will be taught their "gender" is a matter of choice.
- AB 394, signed by Schwarzenegger in 2007, effectively promotes transsexual, bisexual and homosexual indoctrination of students, parents and teachers via "anti-harassment" and "anti-discrimination" materials, to be publicized in classrooms and assemblies, posted on walls, incorporated into curricula on school websites, and distributed in handouts to take home.
- SB 71, signed by Gov. Gray Davis in 2003 and implemented in 2008 through the new "sexual health" standards approved by appointees of Schwarzenegger and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell, teaches children as young as 5th grade that any consensual sexual behavior is "safe" as long as you "protect" yourself with a condom, and teaches children that homosexuality, bisexuality and transsexuality is "normal."
- AB 1785, signed by Davis in 2000, required the California State Board of Education to alter the state curriculum frameworks to include and require "human relations education" for children in K-12 public schools, with the aim of "fostering an appreciation of the diversity of California’s population and discouraging the development of discriminatory attitudes and practices," according to the state legislative counsel's digest.
- AB 537, signed by Davis in 1999, permits teachers and students to openly proclaim and display their homosexuality, bisexuality or transsexuality, even permitting cross-dressing teachers, school employees and student on campus, in classrooms, and in restrooms.
SB 48 takes the state even a step beyond its demand that students in public schools every year honor Harvey Milk, a homosexual activist and reported sexual predator, as well as an advocate for Jim Jones, leader of the massacred hundreds in Jonestown, Guyana.
In honoring Milk, schools are advocating for the acceptance of what Milk sought: the entire homosexual, bisexual and cross-dressing agenda; a refusal to acknowledge sexually transmitted diseases spread by the behavior; his behavior as "a sexual predator of teenage boys, most of them runaways with drug problems"; advocacy for multiple sexual relationships at one time; and "lying to get ahead"; according to SaveCalifornia.com.
A 1982 biography of Milk tells of a 16-year-old named McKinley, who "was looking for some kind of father figure."
"At 33, Milk was launching a new life, though he could hardly have imagined the unlikely direction toward which his new lover would pull him," the book says.
It also states, "It would be to boyish-looking men in their late teens and early 20s that Milk would be attracted for the rest of his life."