Wednesday 24 June 2009

"Doctors for Life" promoting unethical junk science - a clear danger to the community

South African Sec21 Companies:
DOCTORS FOR LIFE PROJECT CARE - 2002/031745/08
DOCTORS FOR LIFE INTERNATIONAL - 2002/000258/08

Website:
http://www.doctorsforlifeinternational.com/
Website:
http://www.doctorsforlifeinternational.com/issues/homosexuality.cfm


Quoted verbatim hereunder:

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"ISSUES • HOMOSEXUALITY


Homosexuality is an attempt to get a normal need met in an abnormal way. Homosexuality is not about sex, but is about a need for love and acceptance in a person who through circumstances or conditioning often did not receive or perceive to receive love or acceptance as a child and/or was sexually abused as a child. Homosexuality is not genetically based, but nurture-based, and therefore treatable. Homosexuality is unnatural and no society or religion has ever endorsed it as an ‘acceptable norm’. This behavior pattern is contrary to the God-ordained state of marriage between one man and one woman, and is not conducive to a stable family environment to raise children.

Medically, some homosexual acts are physically harmful because they disregard human anatomy and function. These acts are associated with increased risks of tissue injury, organ malfunction, and infectious diseases. These and other factors result in a significantly shortened life expectancy. Among those involved in homosexual acts, there is an increased incidence of drug/or alcohol dependency, compulsive sexual behaviour, anxiety, depression, and suicide. Psychologically, most people hope for a permanent relationship. Life long relationships offer most people a higher level of self-esteem, emotional security, health, and happiness. However, studies have shown that only 8% of homosexual men and 7% of homosexual women had relationships lasting more than 3 years. In addition, only 13% exclusivity was found in homosexual couples that had been together for less than one year.

Homosexual love is the attempt to fulfill a deficit in wholeness of one’s original gender. Unlike heterosexual love, both partners have the same deficit. There is valid evidence that gay coupling almost never evolves into a mature love that is defined by quiet consistency, trust, mutual dependency and sexual fidelity. Socially, men who commit homosexual acts have a high incidence of promiscuity, child molestation, and sexually transmitted diseases. Homosexual behaviours burden society with increased medical costs, increased disability, and productivity loss. Legalizing or blessing same sex marriage or civil unions is harmful to the stability of society, the raising of children, and the institution of marriage. If the only criterion for marriage were mutual consent or commitment, there are no grounds to prohibit bestial, pedophilic, sodomous or incestuous unions. Doctors for Life (DFL) offers help and counseling with compassion and understanding to those who desire to come out of a homosexual life style. Many who have chosen to reject their homosexual activities have successfully restructured their lives. So can you.
Homosexuality
Is Homosexuality Genetic? : A special report by Dr. Albu van Eeden, CEO of Doctors for Life

200 Studies: People who claim to have changed their sexual orientation from Homosexual to Heterosexual - a Study done by Robert L. Spitzer M.D. Columbia University - Chief, Biometrics Research and Professor of Psychiatry.
Helpline +27 (0) 82 407 3929 email questions/comments"

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The statements above are nefarious to state it mildly - it is in contravention of the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discriminations Act, act 4 of 2000.

Herewith the elaboration on why I see the statement as gross malfeasance:

In 1973 the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from the DSM and declared that it is not a disease of any kind. The American Psychological Association and various other medical associations followed suit not long after.

Homosexuality however remained in the World Health Organisation’s International Classification of Diseases until 17 May 1990 – a day which is aptly known today as IDAHO day – the International Day Against Homophobia.

Subsequently homosexuality was removed from the then ICD-9 and is not found in the current version – the ICD-10.

In 1997/1998 and again in 2000 the American Psychiatric Association denounced “Reparative Therapy” saying inter alia:

“[There] is no published scientific evidence supporting the efficacy of reparative therapy as a treatment to change ones sexual orientation”

“The potential risks of reparative therapy are great, including depression, anxiety and self-destructive behaviour”

“Therefore, the American Psychiatric Association opposes any psychiatric treatment, such as reparative or conversion therapy which is based upon the assumption that homosexuality per se is a mental disorder or based upon the a priori assumption that the patient should change his/her sexual homosexual orientation.”

http://www.psych.org/Departments/EDU/Library/APAOfficialDocumentsandRelated/PositionStatements/200001.aspx
http://www.psych.org/Departments/EDU/Library/APAOfficialDocumentsandRelated/PositionStatements/200001a.aspx

An a priori assumption is: “an assumption that is true without further proof or need to prove it. It is assumed the sun will come up tomorrow. However, it has a negative side: an a priori assumption made without question on the basis that no analysis or study is necessary, can be mental laziness when the reality is not so certain.”
http://dictionary.law.com/default2.asp?selected=2426&

In fact this a priori assumption borders on defamation if it is not already. When there is no medical proof of efficacy and explicit denouncement and lambasting from an esteemed organisation such as the APA; how dare organisations like Doctors For Life, Exodus International, Focus on the Family, NARTH and even according to evidence – the Dutch Reformed Church Moreleta Park (they coined it H20 - Homosexuality to Overcome -
http://www.kletskerk.co.za/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=145) continue with their socially sanctioned psychological harm and not to mention the human rights abuses?

What is most distressing is that a considerable portion of persons subjected to these barbaric “therapy” is most likely minors with little legal recourse and options (other than legal emancipation) and they are most likely manipulated, intimidated, emotionally blackmailed and guilt-tripped into these “programmes”.

Many have conveniently forgotten that some South African churches were mere mouthpieces of the Apartheid government and used the bible to justify Apartheid and to stifle the emancipation of women.
Is this terrorism based on sexual orientation not just another prejudice paradigm manifestation and ergo a justification for these cruel interventions?

Conversely there are many churches that accept LGBTIQ persons with open arms sans any prejudice and judgement. This is not about bashing religion but exposing a dangerous phenomenon.

The South African Society of Psychiatrists (SASOP) has issued the following position statements:

“SASOP Position Statement on Homosexuality

SASOP acknowledges that in the past, use of diagnostic systems that classified homosexuality as a disorder, may have caused patients distress. SASOP actively distances itself from this previously held position and endorses the equality clauses in the present constitution.

SASOP endorses the stance of the American Psychiatric Association that homosexuality per se implies no impairment in judgement, stability, reliability, or general social, vocational capabilities or increased psychopathology. (The APA removed homosexuality as a mental disorder from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) in 1973 after reviewing evidence that revealed it did not fit necessary criteria to be categorized as a mental illness.) SASOP undertakes to do all that is possible to decrease the stigma related to homosexuality wherever and whenever it may occur.

SASOP opposes any psychiatric treatment such as "reparative" or "conversion" therapy designed to change a person's sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual and supports the opinion of the APA that "there is no scientific evidence that reparative or conversion therapy is effective in changing a person's sexual orientation. There is, however, evidence that this type of therapy can be destructive." In fact reparative therapy runs the risk of harming patients by causing depression, anxiety, and self-destructive behavior...

SASOP recognizes that bias-related incidents such as acts of violence or harassment, arising from anti-gay and lesbian prejudice are widespread in society and continue to be a source of individual suffering and trauma. These incidents result in emotional and physical trauma for individuals, as well as stigmatization of affected groups. SASOP deplores such bias-related incidents and encourages its own member psychiatrists to take appropriate actions in helping to prevent such events, as well as to respond actively in treating the victims of such events.”

And on 1 December 2005 SASOP issued a press statement that welcomed the ruling by the Constitutional Court that same-sex marriage should be legalised.

“Press Statement on Homosexuality on 1 December 2005

The South African Society of Psychiatrists (SASOP) notes this ruling and strongly supports it. We feel that we need to clarify our position on this issue in the face of public debate. The public may be aware that in the past, psychiatry has judged homosexual unions as abnormal. Hence, gay and lesbian individuals in past generations suffered discrimination at the hands of psychiatrists.

Several prejudices exist concerning homosexuality. One of these is that gay couples cannot form lasting, deep emotional attachments and commitments.
However, a 1991 review of the literature on gay and lesbian couples concluded that [r]esearch has shown that most lesbians and gay men want intimate relationships and are successful in creating them. A major study of heterosexual and gay couples in the United States concluded in the early l980s that [c]ouplehood, either as a reality or an aspiration, is as strong among gay people as it is among heterosexuals. Empirical studies have found that between 40% and 70% of gay men and between 60% and 80% of lesbians are involved in steady relationships at a given time.
Same sex couples should not be deprived of legal marriage as this institution can provide important mental health benefits, both to members of same sex couples and to the wider community. The majority of lesbians and gay men report that they are in a committed relationship. Wedding ceremonies, though not legally sanctioned, are common. Nevertheless, the couples lack the same legal rights and responsibilities as those accorded to heterosexual married couples.

Although there has not yet been sufficient research into the psychological harm caused by the lack of legal marriage, research on heterosexual couples identifies marital disruption as a precursor for poor mental health.
Another prejudice is that same sex couples are bad parents to their children, biological or adopted. However, scientific research indicates that gay parents are little different from heterosexual parents. Several studies have evaluated the parenting philosophies and skills of gay men and have concluded that gay fathers are similar to (heterosexual) fathers in their overall parenting abilities and skills. Such research suggests that the gay fathers are at least equal to heterosexual fathers in the quality of their parenting. Indeed, two researchers reviewing the literature in this area concluded: It is evident . . . that both lesbians and gay men who are parents are as sufficient in the roles as heterosexuals, and that the home life they provide is at least of equal quality. Some researchers have found that gay fathers make greater efforts to create a stable home environment and positive relationship with their children than heterosexual fathers do.
Another commonly held prejudice is that same sex parents will adversely influence the gender identity of their children. Research into three aspects of sexual identity: gender identity; gender role; and sexual orientation; consistently demonstrates no differences between children of gay or lesbian parents and children of heterosexual parents. Research involving children of gay fathers indicates that these children develop gender role identifications (self-identification as male or female) that are consistent with their biological sex. Similarly, comparisons of children raised by lesbian and heterosexual mothers found no appreciable differences. Most children in both groups identified with their biological sex and indicated satisfaction with their gender.

The more extensive research on children being raised by lesbian parents provides consistent evidence that the sexual orientation of parents is not a predictive variable in the psychological and social development of children. When single-parent households were studied, children raised by lesbian mothers and by heterosexual mothers had no psychological differences.

Hence SASOP believes the Constitutional Court's ruling is a positive move that which is in accordance with all the scientific literature supporting same sex couples and parenting.”

http://www.sasop.co.za/C_PsyCnr.asp


So the pivotal question: why fix something that isn’t broken?
And moreover, how can one justify so-called therapy which causes more harm and has no basis in the medical sciences but denouncement by medical associations?
“First do no harm” is their mantra and we should take their word.
Now how dare medical professionals defy medical ethics and practice bigotry in the name of Medicine?
HPCSA here we come...

Next time you go to see your doctor, ask a simple question: do you belong to Doctors For Life?
If they answer yes - run, and file a complaint for malpractice...

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