Michael Brown has written another persecution piece for Charisma. What’s got him so upset? Amazon has stopped selling all books written by Joseph Nicolosi. For those who don’t know the name, Nicolosi is the founding father of conversion therapy. He was the founder and president of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality. (NARTH)

Joseph Nicolosi

Most so-called techniques for and theories about conversion /reparative therapy can be traced back to him. Many states have now banned the dangerous practice of conversion therapy because it is shown to have no scientific validity, no success rate, and is actually dangerous to the mental health of the patient.

In the research paper Changing Sexual Orientation: A Consumers’ Report (Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 33(3), 249-259.) it was reported, “That 88% of participants failed to achieve a sustained change in their sexual behavior and 3% reported changing their orientation to heterosexual. The remainder reported either losing all sexual drive or attempting to remain celibate, with no change in attraction. Some of the participants who failed, felt a sense of shame and had gone through conversion therapy programs for many years. Others who failed believed that therapy was worthwhile and valuable. Many respondents felt harmed by the attempt to change and reported depression, suicidal ideation, and attempts, hypervigilance of gender-deviant mannerisms, social isolation, fear of being a child abuser, and poor self-esteem. Of the 8 respondents (out of a sample of 202) who reported a change in sexual orientation, 7 worked as ex-gay counselors or group leaders” In other words, It doesn’t work and causes harm, and the eight individuals, who claim they have changed orientation, are straight for pay.

Michael Brown is upset that Nicolosi’s books aren’t being sold on Amazon. He makes his living off the quackery of the ex-gay industry. He goes off on a religious persecution rant by saying, “In a very disturbing move, Amazon has removed the books of Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, the psychologist whom critics have dubbed “the father of conversion therapy.” In other words, for claiming that sexual orientation is not innate and immutable, and for claiming that change is possible, Dr. Nicolosi’s books must be banned. This leads to the logical question: Will Amazon ban the Bible next? There is no hyperbole here.”

Yeah, there is hyperbole there. Amazon didn’t ban the books; they stopped selling them. They didn’t stop selling them because the books claimed sexuality was innate and immutable, Amazon will sell anything that makes them money. They removed the books from their inventory because of the 800,000 signatures on a petition that asked them to remove books that advocated dangerous practices. Amazon recognized the potential public relations nightmare and made a business decision based on economics. maybe Brown is fearful his books are next.

Will Amazon ban the Bible next? Of course not! Amazon makes a lot of money selling Bibles and other religious books. Amazon helped but the local Christian bookstore out of business. They aren’t going to give up a cash cow like Bibles.

This isn’t Christian persecution; this is a business decision. Now, normally I’d be upset about censorship and any abridgment of free speech. However, that’s not what is happening here. Amazon is a business. Like any business, it has the right to decide what they want to sell or not sell. It’s when the government censors books or abridges free speech that I get angry because those are rights that are covered by the Constitution.

Amazon isn’t the government. Choosing not to sell a product in a store isn’t censorship. Choosing not to carry a particular product line isn’t abridging free speech. I find it strange that Fundagelicals who believe it is their right of religious freedom not to sell wedding cakes to LGBT+ people, which is discrimination, or not to sell wedding dresses to LGBT+ people, also discrimination, are upset and feel persecuted when a business decides not to sell at all. Would they be upset if the baker didn’t sell coffee? Would they be upset if the dress shop didn’t sell cowboy boots?

The mere fact that Michael Brown can write the hogwash he does is proof that his right to free speech isn’t being amended. Fundagelicals aren’t suffering persecution; they are suffering a minor inconvenience. They won’t be getting their quack science books with free two-day shipping.

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