Sunday, June 12, 2005

Update on Refuge's attempt at forced "conversion"

In an update to my earlier post about kids being sent to Christ's Camp for Gayward Teens (aka Refuge or LIA), I came across additional info at The Republic of T via Amanda (that girl is addicted to blogging, get her to rehab - and a tube of preparation-H). As I read the additional information and watched the linked coverage on WMCTV, I at first felt heartened and then my heart sank as I thought about the potential ramifications. While it's great to be able to publicize a personal story to promote awareness and help others, there is a down-side in that the publicity surrounding stories such as this may come with stepped up "treatment" at the hands of the folks who are already showing a lack of concern for them in their effort to "scare him straight" and trot them out as an example of success at a later date. Additionally, as media coverage can a double-edged sword, I'm now seriously concerned that identifying vulnerable individuals (in particular) enrolled in these programs against their will could also inadvertently set them up for acts of retribution when they do not provide an "acceptable" response - especially when that program is led by someone who thinks that suicide is preferable to being gay.

OC's note: the original content of this post was edited to remove some potentially identifying information of a minor that may be in treatment.

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