American Psychological Association Shuts Out Christian Voice

Focus on the Family and 20 million Americans have been denied input into an American Psychological Association panel on homosexuality.

This summer, a task force set up by the APA began reviewing the organization's 10-year-old policy on therapy for homosexuality. The APA opposes counseling that treats same-sex attraction as a mental illness; some psychologists want the APA to forbid therapies that address unwanted same-sex attraction.

In a letter sent in June, Focus on the Family joined more than 250 signers - representing about 20 million people in the pro-family, academic, scientific and therapeutic communities - in urging the APA to respect the religious commitments of their clients, even if that means they decline to identify as homosexual.

The letter requested a meeting with APA leaders, but so far, that request has been ignored. In September, APA Board President Sharon Stephens Brehm responded to Focus on the Family, saying, "We will not be meeting with individual advocacy organizations." Yet, it was pro-gay "advocacy organizations" that initially suggested an update to APA policies.

And a report earlier this year by Ex-Gay Watch - a recognized pro-gay blog - revealed a meeting between the APA's director of LGBT Concerns Office, Dr. Clinton Anderson, and the former assistant director of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) Ron Schlittler.

That same report stated that Anderson sought formal opinions from PFLAG and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force in September 2005 in anticipation of forming the APA task force.

Focus on the Family sent another letter - this one in early November - again asking for a meeting with the APA. Just before Thanksgiving, Brehm sent another response to Focus on the Family, pledging to share its concerns with the Board of Directors at its Dec. 7-9 meeting.

We shall see what happens.