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Exodus' So-Called New Direction Heads Down Old Path

AlanChambersNews outlets all across the nation have been reporting on word that prominent "ex-gay" group Exodus International and leader Alan Chambers no longer espouse "reparative therapy" and admit there's no cure for innate same-sex desires.

But as Zack Ford notes at ThinkProgress, Exodus still thinks homosexuality is a problem that needs to be treated. Its new direction therefore actually offers nothing new. All the attention is simply "media-hype:"

If Exodus is no longer going to offer reparative therapy, what is it going to offer? At the bottom of the NYT piece, Chambers says that “many Christians with homosexual urges may have to strive for lives of celibacy.” NPR admits toward the end of its story that “Chambers compares same-sex attraction to adultery or pride,” believes that “homosexual acts are a sin because the Bible calls for heterosexual marriage,” and says that “gay Christians must either be celibate, or if they want to marry, it must be with someone of the opposite sex.”

Sin, celibacy, and fake marriages do not constitute progress from ex-gay therapy.

Ford concludes, "Their desire to not do harm is admirable — and with this change, they may in fact do less harm — but that doesn’t change the fact that anything short of sexual orientation affirmation is still harmful." Amen.

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Comments

  1. "But as Zack Ford notes at ThinkProgress, Exodus still thinks homosexuality is a problem that needs to be treated. Its new direction therefore actually offers nothing new. All the attention is simply "media-hype:""

    I thought that was abundantly clear in their first press release. Where was this popular misconception that's being alluded to?

    Posted by: Nat | Jul 9, 2012 3:22:50 PM


  2. What happened to the rabbi post?

    Posted by: Questioning | Jul 9, 2012 3:48:44 PM


  3. We get into shaky ground when entering into arguments about what is "sinful" with people outside of our own religions/denominations. Not keeping kosher is an offense to some but there is no point in arguing about it as it is not US law. Our advocacy needs to focus on equality under civil law and protecting ourselves from defamation and propaganda like "gay cures." Franky, I couldn't care less whether Chambers thinks I am a sinner as I don't have to attend his church.

    Posted by: JJH | Jul 9, 2012 3:59:26 PM


  4. Christ said some men weren't made for marrying women, and then list the three typed of eunuchs with gay men listed as the born this way type. He most definitely did not chirp in with, therefore these men must be celibant.

    You can't tell me this f'n f@g doesn't know this since its in the same paragrapgh that he is referring to.

    Posted by: Michael | Jul 9, 2012 4:31:43 PM


  5. Michael, you're actually paraphrasing Paul, not Jesus. Paul writes that he wishes that all Christians could be celibate for life, so people would be more devoted in their love of God. He finally concedes that it's better to marry than to lust.

    Jesus didn't ever discuss eunuchs marrying. And FYI, to refer to him as "Christ" is to say that you think Jesus was the messiah.

    Posted by: GMB | Jul 9, 2012 4:46:01 PM


  6. Exodus and its supporters are Christians who believe in the Bible as the actual, inerrant Word of God. That has been the standard Protestant belief throughout the centuries. As such, they believe that any sex outside of heterosexual marriage is sin, and anyone who claims to be a Christian, should live in accordance with that revelation and teaching. It is the longheld Christian belief, and they have a right to live in complicity with it. I don't see why people outside their belief community are up in arms that non-heterosexually married Christians want to live in accordance with the Bible. Let them live their faith and stop trying to interfere with their relationship with God.

    Posted by: Malcolm | Jul 9, 2012 4:52:03 PM


  7. If you are gonna quote Jesus, remember that he warned that anyone who lusts after another has committed adultery in his heart. As for eunuchs, they were understood to be celibate, usually by castration, impotence, or by choice to be celibate to serve God.

    Posted by: Malcolm | Jul 9, 2012 4:58:33 PM


  8. And the positive media hype is being promoted over at Box Turtle Bulletin of ALL places! Jim has been writing some glowing reviews of their latest conference. It's really bizarre!

    Posted by: TampaZeke | Jul 9, 2012 5:00:21 PM


  9. Sorry GMB, but you're WRONG. He isn't paraphrasing Paul. He's paraphrasing JESUS. Maybe you should try reading the Gospels (specifically Matthew 19) and become more familiar with them before you call someone out on biblical references.

    Posted by: TampaZeke | Jul 9, 2012 5:06:12 PM


  10. I guess I'm sort of with Malcolm on this. I think we're being wilfully ignorant if we don't acknowledge the major change Exodus is making here. Their previous position was that being gay was fixable, and you could go to a psychiatrist and switch from gay to straight. That is garbage science and obviously harmful to the victim. Now they are admitting as much, and instead say that, in their view (and it must be said in the most common view of Christian tenets) homosexuality is wrong, so if you're born this way you have to choose to either live in sin or be celibate. Most of us choose to flee religion, some choose to form a theology that is consistent with being gay and join gay friendly churches such as the United Church of Christ, while others can choose to try celibacy and remaining devout members of an anti gay church. I think this is just a fact of life, I certainly know gay men who choose for religious reasons to fight their gay impulses. I think it's stupid but it doesn't bother me that that choice exists. It's a huge improvement over their previous position of falsely grounded in science. Incidentally I'm sure their media appearances will dry up. Before networks felt compelled to show both sides of the nature vs nurture debate on the origins of homosexuality, but now that Exodus has just become another religious nutcase group, they don't fill any media purpose and hate groups will find it increasingly difficult to support their view that being gay is a choice.

    Posted by: Brian | Jul 9, 2012 5:25:24 PM


  11. I guess I'm sort of with Malcolm on this. I think we're being wilfully ignorant if we don't acknowledge the major change Exodus is making here. Their previous position was that being gay was fixable, and you could go to a psychiatrist and switch from gay to straight. That is garbage science and obviously harmful to the victim. Now they are admitting as much, and instead say that, in their view (and it must be said in the most common view of Christian tenets) homosexuality is wrong, so if you're born this way you have to choose to either live in sin or be celibate. Most of us choose to flee religion, some choose to form a theology that is consistent with being gay and join gay friendly churches such as the United Church of Christ, while others can choose to try celibacy and remaining devout members of an anti gay church. I think this is just a fact of life, I certainly know gay men who choose for religious reasons to fight their gay impulses. I think it's stupid but it doesn't bother me that that choice exists. It's a huge improvement over their previous position of falsely grounded in science. Incidentally I'm sure their media appearances will dry up. Before networks felt compelled to show both sides of the nature vs nurture debate on the origins of homosexuality, but now that Exodus has just become another religious nutcase group, they don't fill any media purpose and hate groups will find it increasingly difficult to support their view that being gay is a choice.

    Posted by: Brian | Jul 9, 2012 5:25:33 PM


  12. Only stupid, crazy people take these people seriously. Everyone else knows they are scam artists.

    Posted by: Icebloo | Jul 9, 2012 7:05:46 PM


  13. EI was in it for the money, and now that that business is drying up and being discredited as a waste of time and harmful, they are changing their tune to maintain whatever business they can but it's probably a losing cause as gay men of younger generations are less and less likely to want to hide the fact. I guess the next step for them is to suggest that gay men masturbate to online gay porn to purge their sinful desires and concentrate on their str8 marriages. Heck, Ted Haggard had it under better control.

    Posted by: anon | Jul 9, 2012 7:40:21 PM


  14. I think this is strategic re-branding of an unchanged agenda, calling it religious counseling instead of a cure, possibly to circumvent legislation that would restrict reparative therapies.

    Posted by: Mike | Jul 9, 2012 8:04:54 PM


  15. @Questioning: Whats with asking the same question everywhere: "What happened to the rabbi post". We all saw it, read it, and commented on it. Do I detect the suspicion of a Jewish conspiracy in not keeping it up longer? Whats your point?

    Posted by: andrew | Jul 10, 2012 3:34:05 AM


  16. You can claim that you are free from homosexuality, but you are still queer as a 3 dollar bill!!!

    Posted by: Jeffrey | Jul 10, 2012 8:07:45 AM


  17. Because celibacy works so well for Catholic priests...

    Posted by: ezam | Jul 10, 2012 2:02:59 PM


  18. These anti-gay Christians and psychologist/psychiatrist cause the death of LGBT people and they need to arrested for the deaths they cause as a result of their anti-gay torture therapy.

    Posted by: Mike | Jul 11, 2012 12:25:35 AM


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