"Ex-Gays" | Lisa Ling | News | Television

Watch: Lisa Ling to Discuss, Religion, Sexuality, and 'Praying the Gay Away'


On tonight's Our America with Lisa Ling airing from 10-11 pm ET on the OWN network, Ling speaks with "ex-gay" Alan Chambers, and Christian, a young man who wants to "pray the gay away" in an episode dealing with religion and sexuality. 

Gayle King and Ling are having a follow-up on King's show immediately afterward:

“Pray the Gay Away? The Conversation Continues…” airing live from 11 p.m. – 12 a.m. ET will talk to representatives from both sides of the issue and give viewers an opportunity to share their thoughts about the topic of sexuality versus spirituality with Ling, King and their guests through Skype, viewer phone calls and social media during the one-hour special.  Viewers can submit their questions by calling 888-442-9535, using the hashtag #OurAmerica on Twitter or via Facebook at facebook.com/owntv.

Watch a couple of previews, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Great to see that the OWN network is giving these lovely TOTALLY not bigoted people a platform.

    Ohhhhh but it's to "let us decide." Ok, that makes it better.

    I expect next they'll be doing a special covering the KKK and the NAACP so that, we, the viewer, might decide. Right?

    The mere suggestion that there is a debate over "sexuality versus spirituality" is offensive. One is an immutable aspect of one's being, another is choice in religious beliefs. There is no "versus" between the two.

    Posted by: SKOC211 | Mar 8, 2011 5:23:35 PM

  2. Unless Lisa Ling states unequivocally that ALL medical and psychiatric experts experts state that sexuality cannot be 'cured' then she is giving a platform to dangerous bigotry. If this is the case then Ling needs to be condemned for legitimising dangerous malpractise. And Winfrey should be condemned fo giving a platform to malpractise.

    Posted by: SteveC | Mar 8, 2011 5:26:09 PM

  3. As Joe Jervis says over at Joy.My.God... most of these confirmed "ex-gays" also have a history of substance abuse. Then, along their road to health, their gayness gets thrown in the mix as something that needs "fixing".

    Surely, there's no "ex-lefty" movement for recovering addicts who are naturally left-handed.

    Posted by: oneway | Mar 8, 2011 5:29:27 PM

  4. "ET will talk to representatives from both sides of the issue" Both sides? More false equivalency bullshit from Oprah and Co. There's the truth and there are the lies. Being "ex-gay" is a lie.

    Posted by: TANK | Mar 8, 2011 5:30:21 PM

  5. And another thing: Shame on Oprah, Inc., for giving these troubled people so much legitimacy.

    Posted by: oneway | Mar 8, 2011 5:30:46 PM

  6. F'd up beyond belief. Enjoy your lives of misery, boys.

    Posted by: Derek Pearce | Mar 8, 2011 5:31:49 PM

  7. Shocked and very disappointed that Winfrey or Ling think that there is a 'debate' to be had on this issue. These 'ex-gay cures' are psychiatric abuse. Time to boycott OWN for legitimising bigotry?

    Posted by: SteveC | Mar 8, 2011 5:35:35 PM

  8. What do you expect from a closet dyke like Oprah anyway?

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Mar 8, 2011 5:40:00 PM

  9. Previous episodes have been about transgender individuals, sex offenders, faith healers, drug addiction, and online brides. The aim of the show is just to shine a light on "controversial issues" and those in society that don't get a lot of attention.

    Most people don't believe that you can "pray the gay away". Hence that is what makes it controversial.

    On the transgender episode there was no one on the "other side" to say that transgenderism is a farce. It simply showed the experiences of varied transgendered individuals and their families.

    It's not the typical cable news debate where they have to give time to each "side". It's a very quality program.

    Posted by: Brian in Texas | Mar 8, 2011 5:40:41 PM

  10. Winfrey has always claimed to be a campaigner against abuse. If she thinks there is a legitimate 'debate' to be had about ex-gay quackery, then clearly Oprah Winfrey condones psychological abuse. Disgusting and offensive, and most importantly EXTREMELY dangerous if viewed by a psycologically vulnerable gay person. Shame on Winfrey, shame on Ling. They seem to be ambivalent about the dangers of abuse.

    Posted by: Stephen Murray | Mar 8, 2011 5:42:08 PM

  11. Call me when Ms. King and Ms. Ling decide to do a show on praying away their ethnicity.


    Posted by: ichabod | Mar 8, 2011 5:53:33 PM

  12. Er, geez gus, overreact much? You should really watch the show before jumping to judgments.

    Posted by: Sean | Mar 8, 2011 6:04:19 PM

  13. All you have to do is look at the ex-gays. The only thing that ex- is their reality. These are simply gay men in major denial. Just because you close your eyes really, really tight and dream of Bradley Cooper while you're slipping it to your wife for three minutes in the hopes of making a baby so the world quits questioning your sexuality and you and your wife can go on living the grand lie (but it's never a lie to the man who is simply scared of who he REALLY is or has been socially or religiously bullied so badly he hates himself) doesn't make you straight. If you're sexually attracted to men and having sex with your wife, you're still gay.

    I think if you're in that position and you're relying on prayer, I would pray no one notices you. There's probably a higher average than actually changing your sexual attraction.

    Posted by: BartB | Mar 8, 2011 6:19:34 PM

  14. As soon as I see a right wing preacher "choose" to be gay for a year, then I'll start believing all this BS.

    Posted by: dice | Mar 8, 2011 6:19:43 PM

  15. Sean - no-one is over-reacting. Ling and Winfrey are claiming there is a 'debate' to be had over proven psychological abuse. That deserves condemnation.

    Posted by: Stephen Murray | Mar 8, 2011 6:30:14 PM

  16. I'm glad that I gayed the pray away a long time ago.

    Posted by: Randy | Mar 8, 2011 6:39:11 PM

  17. what pisses me off most about these "ex-gays" is that they think they speak for gay people, and they think they are in a position to judge gay people. no. and no. if you truly are now living a satisfied hetero life, then you were BIsexual and just emphasizing your interest in the same sex previously. (Either that, or you are full of SH** on even what you claim about YOURSELF.)

    Because I am correct about any real "ex-gay" being BIsexual and NOT HOMOsexual, the only thing I can say about these "ex-gays" is that they are A***OLES, because they don't give a SH** for HOMOsexuals. Not to be a bi-hater, but isn't this sort of attitude and bigotry TYPICAL of too many BI-sexuals, whether they spent some time pretending to be gay or not??!!

    BIsexuals need to stand up for LGBT rights already. I think studies suggest there are more BIs in reality than even gays...if only we could get BI people to think positively about THEIR (and everyone else's) sexualities for a change, BTLG rights would benefit...

    Any real "ex-gay" is just a self-loathing bisexual. Be REAL already, a***ole "ex-gays." The very name "ex-gay" is an insult to bisexuality, any REAL "ex-gay"'s true sexuality. (Never mind that the term "ex-gay" is hugely offensive to anyone truly gay.)

    Posted by: just a guy | Mar 8, 2011 7:07:33 PM

  18. If you do not believe in freedom of speech for people you despise, you do not believe in it at all. Noam Chomsky

    if praying the gay away was that easy they are going need a vigil to get the gay out of the first guy featured. AMEN

    Posted by: DAN LAVOIE | Mar 8, 2011 7:44:38 PM

  19. the program is about showing real people in America - whether you agree with them or not, whether they are right or wrong - this is the truth, they exist and this is whats happening out there. its saying "this person could be living next door - here's a glimpse into their lives." i watched it, excellent compared to most other things on TV.

    Posted by: jj | Mar 8, 2011 7:57:29 PM

  20. Although I agree with everyone's comments about the fallacy that is "praying the gay away," I think it is still interesting to hear the other side. I think most people that are watching OWN probably already believe this is a crock. The trailer seems to indicate more of a delusion/sadness about these stories than about supposed redemption.

    Posted by: ajw18 | Mar 8, 2011 8:51:02 PM

  21. wait, wait, wait, WAIT!!! I think as a journalist, Lisa Ling, is not half bad. I'm sure that she'll also expose that some of the original founders of Exodus are now ex-ex-gay. Meaning they are now once again full-fledged card carrying homosexuals.

    Posted by: Jake Netherton | Mar 8, 2011 9:35:09 PM

  22. Yes, the above 2 posters nailed it. This is not about debating "can gay people be changed through prayer?"

    It's simply allowing them to tell their stories and shining a light on these people that exist whether there is a tv show featuring them or not.

    Most of the public whether they are devoutly religious or not truly don't believe you can become straight through prayer and turning to Jesus. We are who we are.

    Posted by: Brian in Texas | Mar 8, 2011 9:38:54 PM

  23. I’m an out proud gay many who is also proud to state A) I have never seen a full Opra program, I work for a living and I’m not home with my feet on the sofa and a pint of Ben and Jerry’s during the day, better things to do and B) I proudly do not have cable and would have no idea where (nor care) where this new “important” network is. GET A LIFE AMERICA!! Off the couch and away from the boob tube READ A BOOK, preferably not the Bible, I’ve read it and it was totally unbelievable in the end.

    Posted by: NW Rich | Mar 8, 2011 10:01:42 PM

  24. ^^
    Because you can't afford it. Don't hate.

    Posted by: Brian in Texas | Mar 8, 2011 10:49:22 PM

  25. Religion is a mental disorder and we should treat it as such. We would lock up someone who believed in unicorns and werewolves ...

    Posted by: JDSwell | Mar 8, 2011 10:55:43 PM

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