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Tuesday, May 8, 2018
No, Joseph Farah, Calif. Bill Would Not Ban the Bible
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah freaks out in his April 22 column:

Ideas have consequences – and so do laws.

In its zeal to ensure that no transgender person in California is ever confronted by any expression that might not entirely affirm that person’s feeling, the state is set to ban all psychological or spiritual counseling contrary to a person’s claimed sexual orientation as well as the sale of any merchandise – presumably including books – that might offer a different point of view.

Obviously, that could very well include the Bible, which does not recognize more than two sexual identities – male and female.

Is it a stretch to say that AB 2943 could result in a ban of the Bibles and books that do not affirm transgenderism?

Not at all.

The bill explicitly prohibits the sale of printed materials that do just that.

Meanwhile, religion blogger Warren Throckmorton did what Farah couldn't be bothered to do -- contact the sponsor of AB 2943, Assemblyman Evan Low:

I wrote Assemblyman Evan Low to ask if AB 2943 prohibited the sale of books or videos promoting conversion therapy by therapists. I also asked if the amended law would prohibit the sale of religious books or videos which advocate that gays should change their sexual orientation by religious means. Finally, I asked if AB 2943 prohibited the sale of books or videos promoting celibate behavior for gays as a way to adhere to religious beliefs.

Low’s Communications Director Maya Polon wrote back to answer all three questions negatively. According to the sponsor, the bill doesn’t relate to books or speech. I followed up by asking if any of the unlawful business practices has ever led to the banning of any books or speech. She wrote back to say that she wasn’t aware of any instance where books about any those practices have been banned.


A few days ago Evan Low responded to this issue via Twitter:

A church or individual may still practice conversion therapy if they do so without charging for this fraudulent service. It does not ban bibles nor does it ban the basic sales of books as some would have you believe.

Throckmorton concluded: "What makes me think this could be a reasonable response to the harm reparative therapy can do is that there is nothing in the bill that stops a person from trying to make personal changes outside of a professional context. Furthermore, I don’t see how the bill prohibits counselors from helping clients who pursue celibacy. However, it does remove the stamp of approval of the mental health professions for change therapy."

The rest of Farah's column is simply regurgitating the bogus alarmism about AB 2943 from anti-gay groups like Liberty Counsel and Save California. Not exactly the journalism WND needs to regain its lost credibility and income.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:32 PM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, May 8, 2018 5:35 PM EDT

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