By Cornstalker (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

By Cornstalker (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Rev. Franklin Graham supports conversion therapy, declaring “homosexuality is defined by God as sin.”
Franklin Graham made his displeasure known as democratic lawmakers introduced the Therapeutic Fraud Prevention Act of 2017 bill in April which will effectively ban any kind of dangerous “treatments” done to erase the LGBTQ identity. Senator Cory Booker from NJ, Representative Ted Lieu from California and Senator Patty Murray from Washington introduced the bill on April 25. If accepted, it will ban outright any treatment set which claims that identifying oneself as an LGBTQ is an illness or addiction and takes steps to solve this non-existent problem. Many people who underwent this program suffered as a result.

Representative Ted Lieu said to a prominent media house, “The bill is very simple. It says it is fraud if you treat someone for a condition that doesn't exist and there's no medical condition known as being gay. LGBTQ people were born perfect; there is nothing to treat them for. And by calling this what it should be, which is fraud, it would effectively shut down most of the organizations.”

Graham, predictably, took issue with the stance taken by Lieu. The former serves as the President of Samaritan's Purse, a Christian relief organization with branches all over the world. He came out fiercely on Facebook opposing the bill and also the comments made by Lieu that LGBTQ individuals are perfect. He said that God has said, that homosexuality is a sin and an abomination. The troubling part is that Graham employed the “conversion therapy” phrase in quotes to refer to conversions towards Christianity. The problem is that he did not acknowledge any actual treatments which have been utilized in the many attempts to “cure” LGBTQ people.

Conversion therapy in this context is a horrifying affair. It is also known as “ex-gay therapy” or the “reparative therapy.” Techniques used to convey this therapy include several de-addiction methods like electroshock therapy, talk therapy, and aversion therapy. Support for such invasive procedures come mostly from conservative Christian groups like American Family Association and Family Research Council.

A large number of people who undergo such treatments experience identity and mental health issues which can continue for years. It is heard from secondary sources that the LGBTQ individuals who are forced to do such therapies end up mentally conflicted about their true identities and end up committing suicide.

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