No, Rick Perry, Being Gay Is Not Like Alcoholism

The science is so very clear on this.

National Journal
Brian Resnick
June 12, 2014, 7:35 a.m.

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s speech at the Com­mon­wealth Club of Cali­for­nia on Wed­nes­day night was go­ing well — he com­pli­men­ted the Cali­for­nia cli­mate, and even spoke kindly of Hil­lary Clin­ton. But then he said this, in San Fran­cisco no less:

“I may have the ge­net­ic cod­ing that I’m in­clined to be an al­co­hol­ic, but I have the de­sire not to do that,” he said. “And I look at the ho­mo­sexu­al is­sue in the same way.”

This is im­port­ant, as it re­flects the think­ing of the Texas Re­pub­lic­an Party at large, which re­cently ad­op­ted a party plat­form that sup­ports the leg­al­ity of gay-con­ver­sion ther­apy. That plat­form reads,

We re­cog­nize the le­git­im­acy and value of coun­sel­ing which of­fers re­par­at­ive ther­apy and treat­ment to pa­tients who are seek­ing es­cape from the ho­mo­sexu­al life­style. No laws or ex­ec­ut­ive or­ders shall be im­posed to lim­it or re­strict ac­cess to this type of ther­apy.

The ther­apy is much de­rided by the psy­cho­lo­gic­al sci­entif­ic es­tab­lish­ment. “The long-stand­ing con­sensus of the be­ha­vi­or­al and so­cial sci­ences and the health and men­tal-health pro­fes­sions is that ho­mo­sexu­al­ity per se is a nor­mal and pos­it­ive vari­ation of hu­man sexu­al ori­ent­a­tion,” the Amer­ic­an Psy­cho­lo­gic­al As­so­ci­ation wrote in a res­ol­u­tion con­dem­ing such ther­apies. Fur­ther­more, the as­so­ci­ation finds that the ther­apies can cause more harm than good.

Re­cently, some states, such as New York, have sought to ban the ther­apies out­right, prompt­ing Texas Re­pub­lic­ans to pree­mpt such meas­ures at home. In a such strongly con­ser­vat­ive state, it’s un­likely that such meas­ures would stand a chance. (It’s re­min­is­cent of the bans on sharia law in very Chris­ti­an-dom­in­ated areas: All bluster.)

Perry’s com­ments rep­res­ent a com­plete con­fla­tion of the sci­entif­ic is­sue. Al­co­hol­ism is a dis­ease. Al­co­hol­ism is mal­ad­apt­ive. Al­co­hol­ism takes and ru­ins lives. Al­co­hol­ism ought to be cured. Ho­mo­sexu­al­ity, while its ori­gins are not quiet un­der­stood, is not a dis­order. And un­like ther­apy for al­co­hol­ism, “the Amer­ic­an Psy­cho­lo­gic­al As­so­ci­ation con­cludes that there is in­suf­fi­cient evid­ence to sup­port the use of psy­cho­lo­gic­al in­ter­ven­tions to change sexu­al ori­ent­a­tion.”

On the oth­er hand, the APA says of al­co­hol-ad­dic­tion ther­apies: “These ther­apies can help people boost their mo­tiv­a­tion to stop drink­ing, identi­fy cir­cum­stances that trig­ger drink­ing, learn new meth­ods to cope with high-risk drink­ing situ­ations, and de­vel­op so­cial sup­port sys­tems with­in their own com­munit­ies.”

Perry is not seek­ing reelec­tion as gov­ernor in 2014, and it’s likely he’ll run for the White House again.

This will be an is­sue he’ll be held ac­count­able for. The num­ber of Amer­ic­ans who sup­port same-sex mar­riage has reached an all-time high. In 2012, 54 per­cent said they view ho­mo­sexu­al­ity as mor­ally ac­cept­able. And 63 per­cent of Amer­ic­ans say dis­crim­in­a­tion against gays is a “very” or “some­what ser­i­ous” prob­lem.

What We're Following See More »
PROCEDURES NOT FOLLOWED
Trump Not on Ballot in Minnesota
2 days ago
THE LATEST
MOB RULE?
Trump on Immigration: ‘I Don’t Know, You Tell Me’
2 days ago
THE LATEST

Perhaps Donald Trump can take a plebiscite to solve this whole messy immigration thing. At a Fox News town hall with Sean Hannity last night, Trump essentially admitted he's "stumped," turning to the audience and asking: “Can we go through a process or do you think they have to get out? Tell me, I mean, I don’t know, you tell me.”

Source:
BIG CHANGE FROM WHEN HE SELF-FINANCED
Trump Enriching His Businesses with Donor Money
3 days ago
WHY WE CARE

Donald Trump "nearly quintupled the monthly rent his presidential campaign pays for its headquarters at Trump Tower to $169,758 in July, when he was raising funds from donors, compared with March, when he was self-funding his campaign." A campaign spokesman "said the increased office space was needed to accommodate an anticipated increase in employees," but the campaign's paid staff has actually dipped by about 25 since March. The campaign has also paid his golf courses and restaurants about $260,000 since mid-May.

Source:
QUESTIONS OVER IMMIGRATION POLICY
Trump Cancels Rallies
4 days ago
THE LATEST

Donald Trump probably isn't taking seriously John Oliver's suggestion that he quit the race. But he has canceled or rescheduled rallies amid questions over his stance on immigration. Trump rescheduled a speech on the topic that he was set to give later this week. Plus, he's also nixed planned rallies in Oregon and Las Vegas this month.

Source:
‘STRATEGY AND MESSAGING’
Sean Hannity Is Also Advising Trump
5 days ago
THE LATEST

Donald Trump's Fox News brain trust keeps growing. After it was revealed that former Fox chief Roger Ailes is informally advising Trump on debate preparation, host Sean Hannity admitted over the weekend that he's also advising Trump on "strategy and messaging." He told the New York Times: “I’m not hiding the fact that I want Donald Trump to be the next president of the United States. I never claimed to be a journalist.”

Source:
×