The first train wreck is Uganda’s proposed “Anti-Homosexuality Bill 2009”. This legislation would lead to the imprisonment and murder of LGBT Ugandans. It would jail anyone accused of “promoting” homosexuality and imprison friends and relatives of LGBT people who did not turn them into authorities.
This fascist bill came about after Exodus Board member, Don Schmierer, had gone to Uganda last spring to attend a conference on homosexuality. Schmierer was joined by Caleb Lee Brundidge of quack Richard Cohen’s International Healing Foundation and Scott Lively, the twisted author of The Pink Swastika, who believes gays are responsible for the holocaust. There were calls at the conference to “wipe out” homosexuality in Uganda. The current bill before the legislature would do just that.
The second disaster is Corduroy Stone, which was an Exodus ministry in Lansing, MI until this week. After six months of dithering and dawdling, Exodus finally parted ways with Corduroy Stone after a client accused Exodus counselor Mike Jones of engaging in bizarre and dangerous therapy. His sessions with Patrick McAlvey, who was 19 at the time, included “cuddle therapy” and odd questions.
“He asked how large my penis was,” McAlvey explained of Jones’ therapy. “He asked if I shave my pubic hair. He asked what type of underwear that I wore. He wanted me to describe my sexual fantasies to him and the type of men I’m attracted to. On one occasion, he asked me to take my shirt off and show him how many push-ups I could do, which I did not do.”
In August, Truth Wins Out released this information in a video. Yet, it took Exodus six months to act and cut its ties to Jones. Clearly, they were more interested in protecting their image than the young adults who may have been put in harms way.
Yet, despite such negligence and a trail of destruction, Exodus Vice President Randy Thomas is trying to play martyr. On Exodus’ blog, the solipsistic “ex-gay” political activist posted a letter by someone named Frank:
Randy, how do you wake up every morning, and go to work knowing that as much as you fight for truth, you are hated beyond understanding? that every word you speak will be twisted and you will be made a laughing stock? This Rachel Maddow thing (among others) has me down… truth is not acceptable anymore. no one cares. … I feel like I’ve talked and talked till im blue in the face yet no one listens… how do you do it?
You have fought longer and harder than I and have been villified more… how do you get up every morning and do it again? … I know I will never cease to proclaim the riches there are in Christ (not just talking bout ex-gay stuff) but I just get so tired of trying to make my little corner of the world a better place when it seems like “the establishment” (read: Rachel Maddow, Keith oberman, Wayne Besen…) is screaming louder telling me to shut up and sit down…
“I resisted posting this blog post because what I go through is nothing compared to some of my peers and especially other Christians around the world who are dying for their faith. I went ahead and posted this because I got this type of message from several people and thought the topic would be worth exploring in general (not just about me.)”
Mr. Thomas, you are the victimizer, not the victim. It is Exodus – not Rachel Maddow, Keith Olberman or myself – that is tied to state sponsored persecution in Uganda. It is you who has repeatedly lied and deceived, not us.
It is Thomas, and his truth-challenged boss Alan Chambers, who have kept Schmierer on the Exodus board, despite the very good possibly of genocidal results because of Schmierer’s foray into Africa.
It is Exodus who in the past had allowed youths like Zach Stark and Lance Carroll to be forced into Exodus’ ex-gay boot camps against their will.
Thomas’ cynical defense for his role in such appalling actions is that he has a nice smile, doesn’t have fangs and is surprisingly friendly. The term “banality of evil” comes to mind when Thomas tries to make the case that his public demeanor does not match his dirty deeds.
Sorry, Mr. Thomas, but it is time to take personal responsibility for the egregious harm perpetrated by you and the staff at Exodus International. If the Anti-Homosexuality Bill 2009 comes to pass and LGBT people are hunted down, everyone associated with Exodus will be viewed as an accomplice to war crimes.
Please, Mr. Thomas, stop playing the victim card. If you want to be a real victim, enroll in Corduroy Stone for “therapy”. For any semblance of respectability, you need to go to Uganda and publicly rebuke this death bill.
But, let’s be clear: right now you are more mercenary than martyr.