Burdened by two scandals, the ex-gay activist group Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality has changed its name.
The change occurred recently without fanfare on the organization’s web site. The new name: “Jews Offering New Alternatives to Healing”
Despite the name change, JONAH’s mission remains largely the same:
- Deny the existence of sexual orientation, a predominant state of sexual attraction to a particular gender
- Promote the myth that homosexual attraction is caused not by biology or brain chemistry, but by a Freudian deficiency of “masculinity” in men that is caused by bad parenting or abuse
- Receive substantial aid from conservative Christian evangelical organizations which teach that faith in Jesus Christ offers the only path out of homosexuality
And its credentials and practices are as scandalous as ever.
Far from “healing” its clients of any sexual confusion or self-doubt, JONAH has a reputation for supplying its clients with Christian evangelical books and subjecting them to unethical abuses that would never be tolerated among true mental-health professionals. And its counselors’ abuses aren’t “new alternatives,” they are century-old snake-oil remedies.
- JONAH’s leader, Arthur Abba Goldberg, is a convicted Wall Street con artist who looted millions of dollars from poor communities. Goldberg has no professional credentials in the mental-health sciences
- JONAH’s senior trainer, Alan Downing, likewise has no professional credentials and stands accused by two former clients of sexual misconduct
- JONAH and its counselors refuse to keep accurate and comprehensive records about their clients, lest such records fall into the hands of objective scientists and be used to measure actual rates of success or failure