AP’s David Crary covers the Haggard issue with comments from the usual suspects.
This article covers some of the same ground as the Denver Post article on November 12. I was struck by a couple of points in this article. There was a certain dogmatism to the APA commenters. Doug Haldeman said there is nothing good that can come from conversion therapy. This is an extreme statement that is at odds with the experience of many who have been involved in it. Possible harm, yes; but “nothing good?” – I think that is easily falsified and is actually contrary to some of Dr. Haldeman’s writings in APA journals.
I thought Joe Nicolosi made a good point by pointing out that each individual has the perogative to determine what same-sex attractions mean to him within a valuative framework. However, in my opinion, he undermined his position to some degree by assessing Mr. Haggard’s history, apparently without any knowledge of him (one hopes it is without experiential knowledge), as needing to face “…the realities that you [Haggard] did not get certain central affirmations from your mother or your father…” How would one know that?
Mr. Crary correctly points out that:
There have been numerous studies, with varying conclusions, on how homosexuality originates and whether it can be changed. But there has been no authoritative study – accepted by both sides – examining the effectiveness and possible ill-effects of reparative therapy.
And so dogmatism on any side seems unwarranted.