NPR's Tell Me More discusses Uganda's Anti-Homosexuality Bill

David Bahati will be on at the top of the show, Tell Me More. I will be on sometime after that to discuss the recent happenings in Uganda regarding the AHB.
To listen, go to the website (or here to listen live) and find where it airs in your neck of the woods. It will be archived later today as well.
There is also an interesting article out this morning at the Daily Beast  quoting yours truly.

CNN: A Christian’s response to anti-gay bullying

Dan Gilgoff’s CNN Belief Blog published my article on anti-gay bias involved in recent bullying related suicides. I am allowed to print a little bit and then link to the rest. I hope you’ll read, recommend, and discuss it at both places…

This week marks the beginning of the 5th annual National Bullying Prevention Month. Tragically, this comes just at the time when the nation is mourning the recent suicides of three young teens, Billy Lucas, Asher Brown and Seth Walsh. Although each situation was a little different, a common denominator was that a central feature of the harassment the boys experienced was anti-gay name-calling.


Sadly, these boys join a string of other suicide victims who’d been subjected to anti-gay bias.

These tragedies have heightened the attention of the public on an already contentious debate about how to prevent anti-gay harassment. While everyone agrees that such bullying is harmful and must be addressed, not all agree about the means to that end.


My view is that evangelicals need to put ideological worries aside and become part of the solution.

I go on to describe how churches and schools in Grove City are working together to combat bullying and recommend that adults put the culture war aside for the good of children.

By the way, I am not ignoring Tyler Clementi. I wanted to focus in this article on young teens in public schools.

Previous related articles:

Sexual Identity Therapy Framework resources

Peter LaBarbera today reprints Laurie Higgins critique of an article by Mark Yarhouse regarding the application of our sexual identity therapy framework (SITF). I am aware he does not mean to promote the framework but his articles have increased my emails about the framework and requests for referrals to therapists who practice in that manner. I refer them to the registry of practitioners who claim to use the SITF at the Institute for the Study of Sexual Identity. However, a quick look will confirm that many areas of the country are unrepresented there. This area clearly needs to be developed.

Those affiliated with ISSI include people working in several graduate programs in counseling and we aware of other programs who inform students about the SITF. By far, the largest organization that offers information regarding the SITF is the American Association of Christian Counselors. Mark and I presented a preconference workshop at the 2007 AACC conference titled, Introduction and Clinical Application of the Sexual Identity Therapy Guidelines.”  A 3 CD set of that workshop is available on the AACC website. In 2008, Mark presented the SITF at the AACC West Region conference. A audio of that workshop is also available on the AACC website.

The website supporting the SITF is There we have posted articles consistent with the SITF and a list of presentations regarding it. On YouTube, there is a two part demonstration of how I worked with BBC reporter David Akinsanya in 2005. Akinsanya had just left Love in Action early because he felt it did not fit him and his values. This interview was conducted in 2005 as the SITF was being developed. 

Wall Street Journal reporter has followed the development of the SITF with a 2007 article in the LA Times and then a 2009 piece in the Wall Street Journal. Wikipedia has an entry on the SITF. The APA’s 2009 sexual orientation task force cited the SITF favorably as a means for clients to therapeutically explore their options.

Much needs to be done to develop the model and describe how existing models are applied with it. Between us, Mark and I have trained several hundred mental health and ministry professionals in the model and look forward to providing more opportunities for supervision and training.

2009: Top ten stories

In the past, I have done a lengthly review. No time for that this year, so here goes…

1. Uganda‘s Anti-Homosexuality Bill – What else? Click the link to read all of the posts on the top two stories, including several exclusive stories and interviews. This guest post by author Jeff Sharlet is one of the most visited posts ever. This story may be the #1 story in 2010 as well. Check out the Facebook group, now with nearly 14,000 members.

2. Uganda’s ex-gay conference – The March conference did not create the Anti-homosexuality Bill but it seems to have been a strategic move by organizers to create  a perception that the bill was needed.

3. APA Task Force report – The American Psychological Association released the long awaited report on therapeutic responses involving sexual orientation. The report recognized the difference between sexual orientation and sexual orientation identity, noted the importance of religious congruence in therapy and cited the sexual identity therapy framework favorably. A nice Wall Street Journal article featuring my work on sexual identity therapy was one result.

4. Kevin Jennings controversy – What goes around comes around. At least in the case of my reporting on Obama’s Department of Education appointee, Kevin Jennings, the old saying seems true. An audio mp3 of Mr. Jennings in 2000 disclosing a meeting with who he said at the time was a 15 year old student was on my website long before he was appointed to the administration.  The matter became a major political story which continues to the present and led to a statement from Mr. Jennings that he should have handled the situation with Brewster/Robertson (his student) differently.

5. Golden Rule Pledge – Another issue, another Facebook group. The annual Day of Silence brought another call from far right social conservative groups to boycott schools. Some evangelical students chose to participate in the Golden Rule Pledge or join with same-sex attracted students in pledging a safe school.

6. The Pink Swastika – An offshoot of reporting on the Uganda ex-gay conference was an exploration of the claims of Scott Lively that homosexuality animated the German Nazi party during WWII. Aided by Grove City College historian, J.D. Wynekin, I did multiple posts exposing the factual errors and misleading aspects of the book, The Pink Swastika. In the process, NARTH, Exodus, and Campus Crusade for Christ pulled web references to The Pink Swastika and Mr. Lively’s theories.

7. Change versus congruence – A repeated discussion on the blog relates to useful paradigm’s in sexual identity ministry. Should change of orientation be the focus of a Christian approach or should congruence of behavior with chosen beliefs be the focus? A popular post which triggered much conversation was a reflection on the APA sexual orientation report, “Thoughts on the status of the Reorientation Wars.”

8. The brief love affair of the Christian right with Carrie Prejean – I had a hard time understanding it and said so.

9. Mankind Project goes transparent – As the result of reporting by the Houston Press and here and elsewhere, the Mankind Project decided to reveal more of what takes place during the New Warriors Training Adventure. The info is still buried deeply on their website but there has been some movement toward letting people know what they are getting into before they attend.

10. Research reports- This is a category which acknowledges that when research comes along, I try to get a closer look with occasional interviews which feature prominent researchers (e.g., J. Michael Bailey). Also, important to me is an ongoing focus on reparative drive theory and the problems with it.

There were other popular posts including David Blakeslee’s “What Happened Yesterday” (about the Fort Hood shootings) that don’t rise to the level of these stories for this blog either because I didn’t cover it or because it was an isolated post. I considered the Ohio voter fraud story for the top ten since I broke a lot of that material in 2008 but there was little interest in it when the convictions came down.

So what did I miss? Happy 2010!

The APA report and the sexual identity therapy framework

The recent American Psychological Association task force report on sexual orientation and psychotherapy included several positive references to the SITF. I have archived those on the SITF website and am providing two here with brief commentary.

The abstract of the sexual identity therapy framework (SITF) says

Sexual identity conflicts are among the most difficult faced by individuals in our society and raise important clinical, ethical and conceptual problems for mental health professionals. We present a framework and recommendations for practice with clients who experience these conflicts and desire therapeutic support for resolution. These recommendations provide conceptual and empirical support for clinical interventions leading to sexual identity outcomes that respect client personal values, religious beliefs and sexual attractions. Four stages of sexual identity therapy are presented incorporating assessment, advanced informed consent, psychotherapy and sexual identity synthesis. The guidelines presented support the resolution of identity conflicts in ways that preserve client autonomy and professional commitments to diversity.


I think the APA report and the SITF are compatible in many important ways.  They both recognize the difference between attractions, behavior and identity. They both recognize that informed consent is critical and that client may seek congruence with other aspects of personality, other than sexual desire, a distinction made in this segment from page 18 of the APA report: Continue reading “The APA report and the sexual identity therapy framework”