Robert Spitzer Hub




150 Game Changing Wins that Made 2012 the Gayest Year Ever

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A remarkably short four decades ago, the Stonewall Revolt of 1969 opened the flood gates for LGBT rights. The closet, so sturdy for so long, started being swept away in a rush of pride. Still, LGBT Americans lived in a culture of "tolerance," a popular euphemism for enduring.

There have been momentous years since then — both Barney Frank's 1987 coming out and the 2003 Supreme Court ruling overturning anti-sodomy laws come to mind — but when we look back in twenty years time or ten or even five, 2012 will be remembered as quantum leap for LGBT rights in the United States of America. It's the year that equality went from being a far-off dream to becoming an inevitable, immutable and irreversible reality. Even Newt Gingrich agrees!

This was the year of equality, the year the American dream came into sharper focus and the nation crossed from begrudgingly tolerating gays, and sometimes even acknowledging their relationships, to demanding our inclusion in the greater American family. Coming out is for the large part no longer a big deal, which is a big deal in and of itself.

There have never been as many out and proud elected officials; never before has Wall Street embraced us with such force; never before have so many conservatives admitted they need to shift gears on marriage equality and embrace change. This was a year of "never before" and "never again."

AFTER THE JUMP, 150 reasons why 2012 was a year of permanence for LGBT Americans, a year that the next wave of rights began its swoop across the purple mountain majesty and above the fruited plain.

And for more of our 2012 Year in Review, be sure to read "I'm Gay: 50 Most Powerful Comings Outs of 2012" HERE.

Continue reading "150 Game Changing Wins that Made 2012 the Gayest Year Ever" »


Exodus International No Longer Trying To 'Cure' Gays, But Still Think Gays Are Sick

AlanChambersAlan Chambers has been trying to revamp the image of Exodus International, the Christian group that for over three decades used its evangelical networks to promote "reparative therapy" they claimed could "cure" homosexuality.

With more doctors and organizations come out against such approaches — one of the "ex-gay" movement's long-time proponents, Robert Spitzer, denounced his previous studies and apologized earlier this year  — Chambers realized he and his colleagues needed to take a softer approach, an approach he says will be center stage at Exodus' annual conference this weekend.

Via MSNBC:

This week, 600 Exodus ministers and followers are gathering for the group's annual conference, held this year in a Minneapolis suburb. The group's president, Alan Chambers, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the conference would highlight his efforts to dissociate the group from the controversial practice usually called ex-gay, reparative or conversion therapy.

"I do not believe that cure is a word that is applicable to really any struggle, homosexuality included," said Chambers, who is married to a woman and has children, but speaks openly about his own sexual attraction to men. "For someone to put out a shingle and say, 'I can cure homosexuality' — that to me is as bizarre as someone saying they can cure any other common temptation or struggle that anyone faces on Planet Earth."

Chambers admits that he's still attracted to men, but finds solace in his marriage to an "understanding" woman and thinks others like him can find a similar way to "reconcile" their innate desires with external religious influences.

The anti-gay activist obviously wants to bolster his and his group's public image, but Wayne Besen from Truth Wins Out notes that Exodus' underlying philosophy still wreaks havoc.

"We appreciate any step toward open, transparent honesty that will do less harm to people," he said. "But the underlying belief is still that homosexuals are sexually broken, that something underlying is broken and needs to be fixed. That's incredibly harmful, it scars people."

Besen also told MSNBC that TWO will soon unveil a new campaign to pressure lawmakers into banning reparative therapy for minors, just as California's Senate did last month.


Dr. Robert Spitzer Speaks at Length About the Hatred of Groups Pushing 'Ex-Gay' Myths: VIDEO

Spitzer

Dr. Robert Spitzer, a psychiatrist who published a controversial 2001 study suggesting that in rare instances gay people could change their sexual orientation, retracted those claims in an American Prospect article published in April and issued an apology to the gay community.

"Ex-gay" watchdog group Truth Wins out followed up with Spitzer in an interview at his home in Princeton, New Jersey, in which he talks about the hatred of those pushing the "ex-gay" myth and apologizes again.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Dr. Robert Spitzer Speaks at Length About the Hatred of Groups Pushing 'Ex-Gay' Myths: VIDEO" »


'NY Times' On Reparative Therapy: 'It Is Absurd'

TimesBuildingThe New York Times' editorial board today celebrated recent news that Dr. Robert Spitzer, a psychiatrist whose work has helped fuel the "ex-gay movement," had admitted his studies were flawed, misleading and dangerous.

[Spitzer] has now renounced a study he did a decade ago that suggested that “reparative therapy” can help homosexuals who are highly motivated to change their sexual orientation. Dr. Spitzer’s admission that his study was deeply flawed should discredit, once and for all, those claims of social and religious conservatives that homosexuality is not a fundamental part of human identity.

Critics have noted that the people interviewed [for his study] were nominated by centers that were performing the therapy and that there was no control group and no clear definition of what counted as therapy. There is also some evidence that reparative therapy can lead to depression or suicidal thoughts and behavior. It is absurd, potentially harmful, pseudopsychiatry.

It should have been rejected long ago.

Amen.


Rachel Maddow on Dr. Robert Spitzer's Retraction and Apology for His Damaging 'Ex-Gay' Study: VIDEO

Spitzer_maddow

Rachel Maddow discussed the use by anti-gay groups of Dr. Robert Spitzer's "ex-gay" study, and how it has now been blown apart by his retraction, and apology.

Kenji Yoshino, a Constitutional Law Professor at NYU, joins Rachel to discuss what effects this might have on the Prop 8 case and other issues.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

Yoshi

Continue reading "Rachel Maddow on Dr. Robert Spitzer's Retraction and Apology for His Damaging 'Ex-Gay' Study: VIDEO" »


Robert Spitzer, Psychiatrist Behind Controversial 'Ex-Gay' Study, Apologizes to the Gay Community

Dr. Robert Spitzer, a psychiatrist who published a controversial 2001 study suggesting that in rare instances gay people could change their sexual orientation, retracted those claims in an American Prospect article published last week. Spitzer had led the effort to declassify homosexuality as a mental illness in 1973, and the 2001 article was an attempt, according to Spitzer, to "question 'whether everything you've been taught is wrong.'"

Robert_spitzerNow, in a letter to Dr. Ken Zucker, Spitzer is apologizing for the wrongs he caused:

I believe I owe the gay community an apology for my study making unproven claims of the efficacy of reparative therapy. I also apologize to any gay person who wasted time and energy undergoing some form of reparative therapy because they believed that I had proven that reparative therapy works with some “highly motivated” individuals.

Read the full letter at Truth Wins Out.


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