This is just wrong

According to this report, a group of young LGB activists raided the Bachmann clinic and threw glitter all over the waiting room.
How pranky.
While there were no clients in the waiting room, there could have been.
I hope real GLB groups condemn this kind of faux activism. One way to halt a self-fulfilling prophecy is not to fulfill it.
Now that I have seen the video (now posted at the link above), I am more sure that this is the kind of thing that will make martyrs out of the Bachmanns.

Is Ghana the next Uganda?

Judging from this June, 2011 report, a safe prediction is that Ghana’s Parliament might soon follow the lead of Uganda in some manner. I have been observing a steady stream of articles from religious and political leaders calling for tougher restrictions on homosexuality. Click the link above to read some, and then consider this recent one calling on Christians to vote against any politician who proposes any law favorable to homosexuality. Also, listen to the interview on the page. One minister, a Dr. Marti, said that one reason that the British Empire fell was because of homosexuality. That minister called for clearer laws against homosexuality so that Ghana would lead the world against homosexuality. Apparently, the issue might become a campaign issue in the upcoming elections.
The situation does not seem to be as severe there as in Uganda, however, this politician warned last month that mob violence may occur. And this one openly called for interfering with rights of association for gays. Today, a Ghanaian leader called for new legislation.
Much of the rhetoric sounds like Uganda circa 2009.
More today (7/19/11) – Rev. Gideon Titi-Ofei & UK evangelist, Nana Owusu condemn homosexuality.

New study: Sexual behavior changes but not sexual orientation

Media have been all over the Bachmann clinic story this week with lots of related discussion about how much, if at all, sexual orientation changes. As a part of this discussion, I noted that a study I am writing up found that over all married gay people assess themselves as growing more same-sex attracted over time.

Along the way, colleague Mark Yarhouse wrote to remind me that he found something similar in a study recently reported in the new issue of the Christian journal Edification (check out the entire journal for background on the whole arena of evangelicals in the study of sexual identity).

The study Mark referred to was authored by his team at Regent University and titled, “Characteristics of Mixed Orientation Couples: An Empirical Study” (start reading at page 41). The sexual minority participants had been married an average of just over 16 years and the average age was 45. While it was not a study of efforts to change, one could reasonably assume that if a group had participants who had shifted orientation very much, then this would be the group. However, that is not what they found, at least not at the level of attraction. See Table 5 below:

You will have to click the table to see it more clearly, but the table  demonstrates that the Kinsey scores shift more toward the heterosexual side when the participants were asked about their sexual behavior but when asked about their attractions, fantasies, and emotional attachments, there was no change. The Kinsey Expanded scale included an average of participant Kinsey assessment of behavior, attractions, fantasies and emotional attachments.

The authors summarized the results:

The mean score of the Kinsey behavior scale before marriage was 3.60, which falls in between the Largely heterosexual, but more than incidental homosexual and Equal amounts of heterosexual and homosexual categories. The mean score of the Kinsey behavior scale currently was 2.80, which falls in between the Largely heterosexual, but incidental homosexual and Largely heterosexual, but more than incidental homosexual categories.

On the Kinsey Expanded version, the mean score for both before marriage and the current assessment were 4.33 and 4.57 respectively. Both of these scores fall in between the
Equal amounts of heterosexual and homosexual and Largely homosexual, but more than incidental heterosexual categories.

I need to ask Mark, and perhaps he can comment, what the Expanded Kinsey result would look like if the behavioral Kinsey score was removed from the average of all Kinsey scores. Perhaps, the attraction, fantasy, etc., scores would rise moderately.

At any rate, the results are consistent with what I am finding as well. People adapt their behavior to their beliefs and commitments but their orientation does not shift, on average.

In all of the bluster about change therapies and clinics, I think evangelicals need to face what evangelical academics are finding in research. Also, a word to the media, both Christian and mainstream, quoting advocacy groups will get you two sides for dramatic tension, but if you want to know how research informs the questions you are asking, please consult those who, despite their religious loyalties, will report accurately.

Marcus Bachmann defends his clinic

Speaking to the Minnesota Star-Tribune, Marcus Bachmann defended his clinic, protested that a recording of him was doctored, and defended the option to seek change of orientation.
Bachmann said a 2010 Point of View radio show was edited to make it appear he considered gays to be barbarians. He said he was speaking about teens in general and not gays specifically.
Bachmann also told the Star-Tribune that his clinic does not specialize in change therapy but would pursue it, at “the client’s discretion.”
Bachmann’s clinic has received $137,000 in Medicaid payments but defended this sum as helping low income clients.
I did not think Bachmann was a big player in gay change circles. While I was more involved in that world, I never heard of him or anyone in his clinic. To my knowledge, he has had no involvement at NARTH.
Sounds like his clinic needs an inservice in the SIT Framework.
If the radio program has been edited to create a false impression, then some red faces need to speak up. Someone surely has the original program and should make it available to the public today.
Update: The fellow who posted the audio of Bachmann referring to gay teens as barbarians says he did not doctor the audio and challenged the radio program to release the full podcast.