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---------- Forwarded message --------- From: PA Family Institute<email@example.com> Date: Fri, Nov 30, 2018 at 3:59 PM Subject: Yesterday's USA TODAY's front page is a must-read To: Phil Horning <firstname.lastname@example.org>
USA TODAY's Front Page: Alexis Lightcap, one of the students in the Boyertown privacy lawsuit, in her own words
As you know, the Independence Law Center and Alliance Defending Freedom have petitioned the Supreme Court to take on their critical student privacy case. Six students from the Boyertown Area School District are suing the school over their unwritten policy that permits biological boys to use the girls' locker room, showers and restrooms, and vice versa.
Alexis Lightcap is one of those six students and is courageously speaking out for her privacy rights to be protected. It's why we honored her at this year's banquet, pictured here, and presented her with our 2018 Hometown Hero award.
Alexis has a wonderful must-read opinion piece that was published in Thursday's USA TODAY:
"Students experiencing gender dysphoria deserve our love and support. But my privacy rights shouldn't depend on what others believe about their gender."
"As a former foster child who bounced around through the system, I know what it's like to be seeking an identity and trying to come to terms with who you are. As a black girl who grew up in a predominantly white neighborhood, I know what it's like to be treated unfairly, picked on, and made fun of by insensitive people. I won't accept anyone being bullied or discriminated against — and that absolutely includes my classmates experiencing gender dysphoria. They deserve our love and support. Even so, my privacy shouldn't depend on what others believe about their own gender."
Please pray for Alexis and the students involved in this case. You can join others in committing to pray by signing up online.
This is also the subject of Michael Geer's newsletter being mailed out shortly. If you don't receive these but would like to, just reply to this email and we'll make sure you receive a copy.
'Gender therapy' bans violate rights
Tom Shaheen (PA Family Institute) and Curtis Schube (Independence Law Center) recently wrote a piece that appeared in the Tribune-Review on the problems with bans on so-called "conversion therapy":
"Suppose a counselor is working with a child who has expressed unwanted gender confusion. If the counselor were to say, "You just need to accept that your gender is different than your biological sex," that therapist would be doing a disservice by refusing to help that child meet goals. But, if the counselor were to affirm the reality of the child's actual biological sex, consistent with the child's goals, the therapist could be charged with a violation.
It's standard practice for counselors to engage in talk therapy. Aversive or abusive treatments are already rejected by those who offer counseling to same-sex attracted patients. Physical abuse in the course of therapy is unethical and illegal , and there is no evidence that such abuse is occurring in Pennsylvania . So, the only result of these bans would be to punish the protected speech of counselors and to prevent clients from achieving their counseling goals."
Is Governor Wolf Threatening Counselors in PA?
Recently, Governor Tom Wolf held a Q&A session on Instagram where he covered a variety of topics, including this question: Do you have any plans to push for legislation to criminalize conversion therapy?
Here's his response:
"I strong oppose conversion therapy. We ought to make it illegal in Pennsylvania and I would support efforts to do that. We also in Pennsylvania need nondiscrimination legislation."
Making "conversion therapy" illegal threatens counselors with loss of business licensure or fines for not affirming the desirability of same-sex attraction, even if the client wants to reduce or eliminate such attraction, or not act on those desires. These bans are something we will continue to monitor and oppose here in Pennsylvania.
Gov. Wolf also continues to push nondiscrimination legislation, or SOGI, that would threaten your religious freedoms and bodily privacy. For more on these types of laws, read Ryan T. Anderson's latest analysis.