Homosexual men were told they were “golden children” before being “infected with gay” at a 48-hour straight conversion camp in Arizona, undercover journalist Ted Cox said on Monday at the School of Education.
Cox spoke to more than 100 students about masculinity in the Bible, the overall failure of gay to straight conversion camps and the non-medical evidence supporting them in a lecture sponsored by the Humanists of Boston University.
At the straight camp Journey Into Manhood, homosexuality was considered a disease that manifests in children with overbearing mothers and deadbeat fathers, Cox said.
A popular conversion therapy exercise was “healing-touch therapy,” Cox said. The counselor would pretend to be a father figure and console a camper as he sits between the counselor’s legs and leans backward with other campers’ arms reaching out toward him.
“As I was being held in the motorcycle position, the counselor was whispering into my ear, ‘very long ago, you were hurt, and you put up walls to protect yourself,’” Cox said.
In another exercise, campers were given a bat to hit a punching bag, which was understood to be their fathers.
“We’re going to give you a message from a new father, a father who does love and care for you. You need to get rid of your old father, so swing away,” Cox said counselors would say of God.
Heredity, hetero-emotional wounds, body image wounds, non-athleticism as a child and a passion for art are falsely considered other causes of homosexuality by anti-homosexual church groups such as Exodus International, Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality, the International Healing Foundation and Courage, Cox said.
George Rekers, a former officer of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality, was caught on vacation with a male prostitute, Cox said.
Cox said contradictory to the information sold at most gay to straight camps, the Bible has no exact words concerning homosexuality.
“Churches [and the Bible] are more concerned with male sexuality and male gender dominance,” Cox said, referring to the biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Despite what some church groups insist about orientation, Cox said most homosexuals leave the camp and still lead gay lives.
“What’s interesting is that academic studies who have looked into ex-gay programs…say that the vast majority of the people in the programs do leave,” Cox said.
Cox said students help by becoming more aware of challenges facing the LGBTQ community.
“Speak up, learn about these issues and don’t be afraid to say something,” Cox said. “One of the best things you can do if you are a member of the LGBT community is come out.”
Students said they appreciated Cox’s work and were also shocked by his stories.
“I think it was great that a straight person is going out and taking initiative and making sure that everyone gets the word out,” said Dan Mello, a School of Management sophomore.
“I was shocked at the number of organizations that there are that think that they can cure homosexuality, and I guess I was a little bit shocked at how forward and honest he was about his opinions,” said SED junior Ethan Pravetz.
June 11, 2011 at 6:34 pm
“At the straight camp Journey Into Manhood, homosexuality was considered a disease that manifests in children with overbearing mothers and deadbeat fathers, Cox said.” This is totally ridiculous. Does anyone else see a massive fallacy in that statement? haha makes me chuckle. Thanks for the share.