Kim Davis to Be Released from Prison with Order Not to Interfere with Same-Sex Marriage Licenses

According to CNN, Rowan County (KY) clerk has been released from prison with instruction from Judge David Bunning not interfere with deputies issuing same-sex marriage licenses.
The compromise appears to involve not requiring Davis’ to put her name on the license. Given the form of a KY marriage license, this should be possible. Note in the license below that the clerk’s name is typed in.
KY Marriage Lic Sign
 
According to the CNN report (and Mat Staver on Wallbuilders Live earlier today), Davis plans to stop licenses if they have her name on them. As you can see above, this license does not have her name on it. KY law appears to require the clerk to certify the accuracy of the license so there may be another impasse.
 
 

The Voice of the Voiceless (sic) Campaign: Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right

Subtitle: Conservatives Against Crazy Therapies #savethepillows (see video below).
Right wing website The College Fix misses the point in an article published last Friday (6/20).
The assumption on the part of Chris Doyle and author Claire Healey seems to be that incorrect information provided by college counseling or resource centers should lead to the addition of more incorrect information at those same centers. In other words, since LGBT centers say some things that might be inaccurate or can’t be proven, ex-gay supporters should be allowed to do the same thing.
This is not “right-minded” but rather wrong-headed.
Doyle can’t offer any evidence for his claims, and as his campaign shows, his group is hardly voiceless.
Conservatives should not react in a knee jerk fashion against what seems like viewpoint discrimination to simply offer what seems to be the opposite position (e.g., gay groups say gays can’t change, conservative groups then should support the notion that gays can change). What seems like the opposite position of the position you don’t like is not of necessity the correct one. In this case, it is true that research has not found a consensus around the causes of homosexuality. However, that does not mean that Doyle’s version of weak fathering and overbearing mothering is correct. In fact, that model doesn’t have support in research. There are many good empirical reasons to question that model for most gays.  Doyle’s therapy approach is based on that causal model which, in addition to the absence of any empirical support, opens it up to skepticism.
Two wrongs don’t create a “right-minded” stance and is a loser as a conservative position.
Chris Doyle’s mentor Richard Cohen in action:
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtGouVqsmsg[/youtube]
Sorry, can’t imagine a college promoting this anti-science brand of ex-gay therapy but that is what Doyle’s IHF is known for.

Matt Barber Invokes Jerry Sandusky to Mislead Public About SB 1172

I get it. Matt Barber thinks gays are disordered and he opposes CA SB 1172.
Agree with the bill or not, one should not exploit a tragedy in order to mislead people about what the bill says.
Barber says the bill prevents counselors from helping kids who have been sexually abused. He writes at WND:

The critical importance of stopping SB 1172 and similar legislation springing up elsewhere becomes especially clear when one considers that such sexual confusion is frequently caused by sexual molestation at the hands of homosexual pedophiles like Jerry Sandusky (hence the moniker: “Jerry Sandusky laws”).

First of all the general link between homosexuality and child abuse he attempts to make is spurious. The Tomeo study he refers to (Archives of Sexual Behavior determined in a 2001 study…) is not accurate and the second author has acknowledged this.  That study or any other one finding a correlation between abuse rates and orientation can tell us nothing about causation.  If Liberty Counsel makes that argument in court, I hope the court gives them a lesson in research methods.
Second, the new law does not prevent counselors from helping kids who have experienced such tragedy. Here is what the law says:

(o) Nothing in this act is intended to prevent a minor who is 12 years of age or older from consenting to any mental health treatment or counseling services, consistent with Section 124260 of the Health and Safety Code, other than sexual orientation change efforts as defined in this act.

Treatment for sexual abuse recovery is not prohibited.  One does not need to tell kids that they can change their sexual orientation by healing from sexual abuse in order to treat the effects of sexual abuse.
Furthermore,

(b) (1) “Sexual orientation change efforts” means any practices by mental health providers that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation. This includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.
(2) “Sexual orientation change efforts” does not include psychotherapies that: (A) provide acceptance, support, and understanding of clients or the facilitation of clients’ coping, social support, and identity exploration and development, including sexual orientation-neutral interventions to prevent or address unlawful conduct or unsafe sexual practices; and (B) do not seek to change sexual orientation.

Barber also falsely says:

[The law] would have forced counselors to violate their oath to “do no harm,” compelling them to advise sexually confused children to adopt a “gay identity” they reject.

The law does not require a counselor to advise any clients, sexual confused or otherwise, to adopt a gay identity. The law simply says that counselors may help clients explore their their identity but does not prescribe an outcome. This law does not prevent clients from deciding they are gay or not gay. It simply prevents therapists from applying interventions that are explicitly designed to changed their sexual orientation.
It seems obvious that Barber’s objection here is based on the fact that he doesn’t understand the proper role of a counselor. Counselors don’t tell clients what identities they should adopt. Such paternalistic approaches would probably put a counselor at risk for a disciplinary action even without SB 1172.
I am not sure the law will pass constitutional muster and will depend in part on how the court rules on the professional-client speech issues. For this post, the merits of the law are not the point. Rather, an accurate description is at issue. Furthermore, exploiting one of the most heinous cases of our time is irresponsible.

Is there more to the Dakota Ary story than has been reported?

In a comment posted here yesterday and at Towleroad, some potential new wrinkles in the Dakota Ary case were asserted. Ary is the high school Freshman, represented by Liberty Counsel, who was briefly suspended over comments made in a Fort Worth High School German class. The initial report was that Ary said he was a Christian and believed homosexuality to be wrong. However, a GLBT group is now claiming to have spoken to the teacher involved, Kristopher Franks, who paints a picture of harassment on the part of Ary and other classmates against the teacher due to their perception that the teacher is gay.
I will state the obvious: I have no idea what the real story is. I post this because the report from the teacher, if accurate, would correct the post I made last week.
Often, people look at a story like this and allow their biases influence them. If you are someone who believes religion is a victim of gay advocacy, you might side with Liberty Counsel. If you believe religion is used to harass GLBT people, then you might be inclined to believe this new report from the GLBT student group.
All I can say is that the reports we have are insufficient to be dogmatic. I have investigated many claims from advocates on both sides of the culture war and been disappointed that truth was not being told. Speaking about my community (evangelical), I can say that I have found some evangelical culture war groups engage in spin. I used to trust such groups to be honest and consider the impact of spin on public perception. As a matter of course now, I don’t accept things at face value.
For instance, recently the law firm representing Dakota Ary, Liberty Counsel, asserted that the American Association of Christian Counselors was a larger group of professionals than the American Psychological Association. This is flat out untrue. On the same day, Mat Staver told his radio audience that the AACC has produced ““the most definitive, most recent research that’s come out that says change is possible.” This is spin.
First, to my knowledge, the AACC has not paid for any research on sexual orientation change. Perhaps, they have and I am not aware of it — if so, I will correct this statement. AACC members Mark Yarhouse and Stan Jones released the first wave of their study at an AACC conference but the AACC did not produce it; Exodus International funded the research. Furthermore, the research showed that some changes took place for a minority of participants but calling the research definitive is a stretch.
Recently, the AACC journal Edification published a report from Mark Yarhouse and his students from Regent University showing that men and women in mixed orientation marriages described no change in sexual orientation. To my knowledge, the Christian culture war complex has not addressed this finding. In a journal, the AACC published research that stands in contradiction to the Liberty Counsel statement.
Some Christians take my skepticism as a character flaw or a sign that I have capitulated to the enemy (see what the culture war does to perception of out-groups?). They say that the opposition spins and manipulates data, so why shouldn’t we? I think the answer is obvious, so obvious that I will let that question sink in and not answer it.
I don’t know who is offering the most factual narrative in the Fort Worth controversy. I just know that right now, for me, the question is open.

AACC is not larger than the APA

Yesterday, Right Wing Watch pointed to a broadcast  from Liberty Counsel and a tweet from the same group saying that the American Association of Christian Counselors is larger than the American Psychological Association. Here is the still-uncorrected tweet:
As RWW pointed out, that is simply not true. The non-profit APA has “more than 154,000 members” and the for profit AACC has said they have “nearly 50,000 members” for several years.
There is another aspect to the claims made by Liberty Counsel that should be pointed out. Mat Staver said on the broadcast that the AACC has produced “the most definitive, most recent research that’s come out that says change is possible.” I assume he is talking about Jones and Yarhouse’s study of Exodus participants (and even there the changes were minimal and not in keeping with the claims made by Staver). However, the Liberty lawyers should also know that a more recent study published in Edification, a journal of the AACC, found that a group of heterosexually married sexual minorities reported no change on average in homosexual attractions.
I pointed this out in this post.