Tuesday night, the ex-gay group Voice of the Voiceless finally held its Ex-Gay Awareness dinner, having been delayed from July because of supposed “security threats.” Ironically, it accomplished the opposite of its supposed awareness-raising goals.
Earlier in the day, all of 15 ex-gay activists went to Capitol Hill to lobby on behalf of ex-gay therapy and its profiteers and victims. It’s unclear who they were able to talk to on the first day of the federal government’s shutdown, and the measly turn-out mirrored the dismal turnout at July’s “ex-gay pride” press conference.
The dinner, which was held at an undisclosed location, was supposedly attended by some 60 people, though it’s unclear who any of them are. The only people who spoke were either people who are not ex-gay, like the Liberty Counsel’s Matt Barber and Bishop Harry Jackson, or those who profit from their ex-gay identities and are already established pundits on the topic, like Voice of the Voiceless founder Christopher Doyle and PFOX president Greg Quinlan. The event was closed to the press — and to anyone who doesn’t support ex-gay therapy — so only the Christian Post and WORLD Magazine articles shed any light on what was said.
According to Doyle, ex-gays “need to scream and yell for equality and justice for all.” Indeed, it seemed many of the speakers highlighted the need to be visible — at an event designed to not be visible. It’s unclear what its organizers hoped to accomplish by hiding in the dark. If anything, they proved that ex-gay therapy is based on shame, that there are very few success stories, and that only those who profit from the harmful, ineffective treatment are willing to be visibly associated with it.