California lawmakers are working to abolish an antiquated law that requires doctors to look into “the causes and cures of homosexuality.” The state adopted the law in 1950 “in response to public outcry over sex crimes in California” and added the homosexuality provision as part of a broader effort to to study the psyche of sexual predators. As Bonnie Lowenthal, the Assemblywoman who’s spearheading the repeal explained in this LA Times piece, “In 1950, homosexuality remained, officially, a mental disorder. So when the Legislature promised funding for a study into the causes and cures of sexual deviance, it was, tragically, natural to add homosexuality to the list.”
Taking homosexuality off that list should be a no-brainer, but this afternoon, CNN — which has tried to present itself as the “hard news” cable network and “the most trusted name in news” — hosted a debate between discredited “ex gay” Richard Cohen and Lowenthal to ask, “homosexuality, is it a problem in need of a cure?”
“Tell me why it’s offensive to you, tell me why you wanted to take action right away when you heard about it,” host Kyra Phillips pressed Lowenthal, while seemingly accepting Cohen’s claim that he’s a “former homosexual.” Watch it:
Clearly, “the best political team on television” was just not at its best, proving that CNN can’t be “trusted” to do even the most preliminary background research on its guests. The network provided the self-proclaimed former homosexual with a platform to promote his organization, the International Healing Foundation, without once challenging his credentials or claims of rehabilitation. In reality, Cohen has been kicked out of the The American Counseling Association and currently operates without any professional license or accreditation. His views on homosexuality have been discredited by every established medical organization and his ideas about gays are apparently only taken seriously by CNN bookers and producers.
Cross-posted on The Wonk Room.