The Instigator
Con (against)
The Contender
Pro (for)

Conversion Therapy

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/27/2017 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 952 times Debate No: 102247
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (6)
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Conversion Therapy, or electroshock therapy, is a very controversial therapy still legal in the United States. The objective of Conversion Therapy is to "convert" a homosexual person to heterosexuality.

Pro will argue that conversion therapy is a positive practice, while I, con, will argue that conversion therapy is a negative, harmful practice.

R1: Acceptance
R2: Main Arguments
R3: Rebuttals
R4: Rebuttals/Conclusion


I accept this debate
Debate Round No. 1


I. Conversion Therapy
II. Is Homosexuality a Choice?
III. The "Success" of Conversion Therapy
IV. Sources

I. Conversion Therapy

Conversion Therapy, also known as "reparative therapy," is a psychological treatment that deals with "changing" a homosexual's sexual orientation to heterosexuality through rigorous and hazardous means such electroshock therapy [1].Conversion therapy also includes psychotherapy (performed by therapists, unlicensed laymen, or self-directed), exorcism, prayer, sexual celibacy, exposure to heterosexual pornography, enforced gender role stereotypes, and submitting to a same-gender heterosexual role model or mentor [2]. This practice is highly controversial, and for just cause. The means of "praying the gay away" are virtually torture- practitioners try to "convert" homosexuals by torturing them so that they mechanically associate their homosexual impulses with the trauma induced by the therapy. As of now, the United States, as a nation, has not outlawed Conversion Therapy. Nearly forty states have allowed Conversion Therapy to continue unchecked, even allowing minors to be subjected to these tortuous methods [3]. However, a bill has been recently proposed by Democrats that seeks to finally abolish conversion therapy, though of course, with Trump as president alongside the Republican-dominated Senate and House of Representatives, this bill is unlikely to be passed [4].

II. Is Homosexuality a Choice?

Conversion Therapy is founded on the idea that homosexuality is a choice (a sinful one no less). However, while conservative and religious media such as the FRC may say that homosexuality is indeed a choice and an abomination, recent scientific studies suggest that it is genetic. It has been concluded by many credible scientists, such as geneticist Dean Hamer of the National Cancer Institute and his team in 1993, that the "gay gene" lies in a region known as the Xq28 marker found on the X chromosome [5]. Dr. Tuck C. Ngun and his team at the University of California have confirmed this with their recent experiment. The team gathered 37 pairs of twins in which one was homosexual while the other was heterosexual. The team took a sample of blood from each volunteer. Through close examination, they isolated the Xq28 marker as likely being the area where the "gay gene" is located in [6].

Homosexuality is not limited to just humans. It can also be witnessed in nature. Wild animals such as dogs may exhibit homosexual tendencies, not out of the conscious decision to betray God and pursue Satanic temptations, but because it's natural to them, clearly demonstrating how homosexuality is natural [7].

III. The "Success" of Conversion Therapy

The "success" rate of Conversion Therapy ranges from around 11 to 37% [8]. However, this so-called "success" can mean anything from a homosexual person pursuing a heterosexual identity and objectively be trying to have relations with the opposite sex, or still retaining homosexual tendencies in the context of celibacy. In a study conducted by Dr. Robert Spitzner of 143 "ex-gays" who went through conversion therapy, he reported that 89% of the men still had feelings for people of the same sex [10]. The American Psychological Association has also supported this idea with research conducted in 2007. The APA has publicly said that the results of the scientifically valid research indicate that it is unlikely that individuals will be able to reduce same-sex attractions or increase other-sex sexual attractions through SOCE," [11].

If the bleak "success" rates were not terrible enough, Conversion Therapy oftentimes leads its victims to depression, self-harm, and even suicide. For example, Bobby Griffith, a homosexual male who came out to his family at age 17, was pressured by the stigma from his family and church to seek conversion therapy. Due to the emotional baggage of being alienated by his community, and the emotional and physical trauma of the therapy, he committed suicide at the age of 20. Stories like these are not uncommon as most survivors of Conversion Therapy have also suffered some sort of trauma and conflictions.

Because of the unfounded belief that homosexuality is "a choice," and because of the ineffectiveness of conversion therapy alongside its horrific consequences, Conversion Therapy should be condemned.

IV. Sources

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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Riley_Houston 3 years ago
I would like to make a quick statement here. I do not believe electroshock therapy is okay in any way. Even if the person has killed 50,000,000 people. I saw upport the death penalty because it is quick and painless, but it should only be used on someone who is so insane they cannot be helped. Electroshock therapy no matter who affective is still painful and very dangerous.
Posted by GrimlyF 3 years ago
You bloody Americans are so wilfully ignorant it makes my blood boil. It is not Conversion therapy it is Aversion therapy. Whether it is homosexuality or smoking the purpose is to stop a certain activity. You can electrocute, beat or waterboard a smoker and sooner rather than later they will stop the habit.
As has been proven time and again you cannot torture a gay to make them straight. No amount of pleasure/pain treatment will stop a man from being gay.
Posted by Jonbonbon 3 years ago
You should specify your definitions of what is positive and what is negative. One could come in and argue that above all else the right to control over ones self is important, so conversion therapy is positive so long as someone freely chooses it. Easy win.
Posted by CosmoJarvis 3 years ago
Conversion therapy is founded upon the religious beliefs that homosexuality is not genetic, but indeed an "influence by Satan." Conversion therapy, in my opinion, is not only ineffectual but disgusting and wrong. Subjecting both adults and children to this torture is revolting.
Posted by What50 3 years ago
If a man wants to be gay then let him.
Posted by canis 3 years ago
Conversion...Why ?
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