By Tonya Cox
I am a Rapid Eye Technician. Rapid Eye Technology is a technique used to assist people in identifying and releasing stress and trauma in their life as well as learn life skills for living happier, vibrant, and more peaceful lives. I work with clients all over the world that experience various kinds of stressors. A large part of my clientele includes Christian men who experience same sex attraction. These are men the world labels “gay” and encourage to live “true to who they are” and embrace their homosexual nature. However, living a gay lifestyle is contrary to their nature and the life they desire to live. Some may say this is because of their faulty Christian beliefs or the unnatural and unrighteous traditions of their fathers. Loud voices on every side proclaim that homosexuality is innate and for these men to live a fulfilling life they must give in to nature and live according to their sexual orientation. While many people do feel this is true and it is a truth for them, it is not a universal truth. Numerous men and women around the world experience same sex attraction but feel there is more to their life and their being than their sexual orientation. They seek to find peace in living true to their religious beliefs — and they do.
A new law pushed through the state legislature in California makes it illegal for me to continue to assist these clients. The State Assembly passed Bill 2943 last month and its fate is now in the hands of the Senate. This Bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Evan Low, makes it illegal for anyone in the state of California to receive treatment of any kind that addresses overcoming sexual identity or sexual orientation issues. This leaves men and women that do not wish to embrace a homosexual lifestyle completely abandoned.
Bill 2943 contains a plethora of information against any kind of support for sexual orientation change efforts. These claims leave no room for anyone to disagrees with the assumption that a person is born gay and the individual must accept this whether he or she wants to or not. While society constantly hears this message, the science does not always support this claim. Even the American Psychiatric Association, quoted several times in support of the bill, must admit on their own web site that:
There is no consensus among scientists about the exact reasons that an individual develops a heterosexual, bisexual, gay, or lesbian orientation. Although much research has examined the possible genetic, hormonal, developmental, social, and cultural influences on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors. Many think that nature and nurture both play complex roles; most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation.
“Most people” experience no sense of choice associated with their sexual orientation, but not all! What about those outside of this scope? Are they of no value? Does their voice not matter? Assemblyman Low is the chair of the California Legislative LGBT caucus. The caucus states they are striving to “advocate for diversity and inclusion of all people.” Does “all people” include those men and women that do not wish to embrace a homosexual lifestyle and seek to find peace and support in living true to their personal values? If so, then as the chair of the LGBT caucus, Assemblyman Low needs to fight for their voice and their rights as well. Human Rights Watch, an international nonprofit and nongovernmental organization that supports LGBT Rights, asserts:” We advocate for laws and policies that will protect everyone’s dignity. We work for a world where all people can enjoy their rights fully.” We must protect the rights of all LGBT men and women including those men and women that do not wish to live according to their sexual orientation and desire support in making that choice.
Yes, some sexual orientation change efforts can hurt more than help and caution is needed when engaging in such therapy. No one need participate in any kind of therapy in which he or she feels threatened or unsafe. If unethical, irresponsible, or unprofessional practices take place, act and file a complaint. But as psychiatrist Joseph Berger emphasizes, political positions like Bill 2943’s decree against reparative therapy are unsubstantiated by science as a whole. Only a snapshot of information supporting the bill is included. The Alliance for Therapeutic Choice and Scientific Integrity contend men and women that desire help in reducing homosexual attraction ought to have the freedom to get the help and support they need. Removing this freedom is not only discriminatory but tyranny.
A few days ago I received a text from one of my male clients. For many years he lived a gay lifestyle but never found happiness. Today as a husband and a father of two little girls, and living true to his Christian faith, I share his words with permission: “I am experiencing light and love like I always wanted to. Thank you for [this] gift!”
In reference to Bill 2943, Assemblyman Low was quoted as saying, “This is a very personal issue to me.” I say to Assemblyman Low, this is a very personal issue: to me, my clients, and countless others in the State of California, across this nation, and around the world. We must stand against tyranny and religious discrimination whenever and wherever it is found.