This week, the assembly in the state of California could vote on a bill that would legitimately ban books, shut down churches, and close psychiatric offices all over the state. What, pray tell, is the purpose of the bill? To prevent anyone from being confronted with material that could advocate changing sexual behavior or gender expression. David French of National Review explains:
Assembly Bill 2943 would make it an “unlawful business practice” to engage in “a transaction intended to result or that results in the sale or lease of goods or services to any consumer” that advertise, offer to engage in, or do engage in “sexual orientation change efforts with an individual.” The bill then defines “sexual orientations change efforts” as “any practices that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation. This includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.”
This is fully insane.
It’s bad enough for a state to intervene between clients and therapists with regard to changing orientations, as several states have already done — while conversion therapy tends to be ineffective, this is a free country in which people should be able to seek whatever therapy they choose.
But this bill goes further. By suggesting that any attempt to change behavior or gender expression amounts to illegal activity, the state of California essentially bars all transactions involving parenting and religious instruction not in line with the socially leftist worldview. It is a simple fact that most religious people believe that orientation and behavior are two different things, fully distinct: we may have urges toward behavior, but it is our job to sometimes forego that behavior. The state of California would make that perspective jail-able or fine-able. Furthermore, if you’re a parent of a three-year-old who says she feels more like a boy than a girl, you’d be forbidden from buying a counseling book urging you to teach that your girl will likely grow out of that perspective (statistically true) or offering strategies for preventing transgender behavior.
This is tyranny. Full stop. And it’s wildly unconstitutional. Under this law, it could be illegal to sell the Bible or buy the Bible; it could be illegal to attend a religious day school. And this asinine piece of garbage passed two separate committees with flying colors.
It’s nearly unthinkable that the Supreme Court would uphold this law. But stranger things have happened, and we live in an ugly time for advocates of personal and religious liberty.