Should gay conversion therapy be banned in Ireland?
Conversion therapy refers to the controversial and pseudoscientific practice of trying to change an individual’s sexual orientation using psychological or spiritual interventions.
There is virtually no reliable evidence that sexuality can be controlled or changed and peak medical bodies warn that conversion therapy practices are ineffective and potentially seriously harmful.
Nevertheless, advocates and proponents do provide anecdotal reports of so-called “ex-gays” who claim some degree of success in becoming heterosexual.
Medical, scientific, and government organizations in the United States and Britain have expressed concern over conversion therapy and consider it potentially harmful.
One man who has brought the practise back into the news is Emmett Dillon.
Emmett who is a gay man has laid down a challenge to Pastor Mark Bradfield from Londonderry’s Bethel Baptist Church who practises gay conversions therapy.
Emmett said “If Mark think his treatment will work, sign him up and he will document the process”.
Foyle Pride 2017 takes place on Saturday, and Pastor Bradfield, whose church is based at Campsie, plans to be there with his megaphone.
He claims gay people’s lifestyle is “physically, mentally and spiritually harmful”.
Pastor Mark believes that god can cure homosexuality and he can help with that.
On the line tonight we had both Emmett and Pastor Mark Bradfield.
Last year Malta became the first European country to ban gay conversion therapy, imposing fines of up to 10,000 euro and a jail term of up to one year for offenders.
Do you believe that a person should have the right to try conversion therapy if it is something they want to do?
I’m not suggesting for a minute that every person in the country has to accept homosexuality because the fact of the matter is that there are people who are quite religious who simply can’t. I believe they should have that right once they do not harm anyone in the process.
However conversion therapy is a whole other ball game– should it be banned completely? Or do you actually support it?
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