Monday, March 27, 2017

A Little BS for the Very Toxic Courage Ministry

Paul Darrow
Paul Darrow — Perhaps he is now a nun
The Catholic Church's Courage Ministry (Apostolate) is a Vatican-approved “pray-away-the-gay” operation. To substantiate their case they like to point to a peer-reviewed article in Linacre Quarterly authored by Michigan psychologist, Paul M. Sutton (who used to be associated with NARTH). Sutton claims that a professional therapist might be able to change the sexual orientation of a highly motivated patient. Aside from the fact that Sutton is not an academic, Linacre Quarterly just happens to be the journal of the Catholic Medical Association.

Sutton does not support his contention with research. He is attempting to refute the harmfulness of conversion therapy. In the UK, by the way, the Association of Christian Counselors claims that conversion therapy is harmful. The Courage process is modeled on 12-step pseudo-science. Even were Sutton correct (the reality is that he is just another religious crackpot) Courage does not provide a professional therapeutic approach.

So here's the story from Catholic News Agency today. Once or twice a year CNA and LifeSiteNews regurgitate this tale:
Paul Darrow went to his first gay beach when he was 15.

Soon after, he hitchhiked his way to New York, where there was a thriving gay scene and where he could pursue a career in modeling. Once there, he landed a high-end job as an international model and rubbed elbows with celebrities at clubs in the city.

When he wasn’t at the studio or at the gym, Darrow spent his time looking for partners. He found himself going through dozens, and then hundreds, and then thousands of lovers.
I don't know what “soon after” means. Was he still a minor. “Thousands of lovers” is popular anti-gay mythology. It is not impossible but it is highly unlikely that a gay man could arrange that many hook-ups. The more important fact is that gay men are no more sexually active than straight men. By the way, if you do a search on “Paul Darrow model” the results are limited to this story. There is no portfolio.  Darrow lives in South Carolina with his partner whom he claims is now just his best friend. Sure. So his partner gets what out of this relationship? Guilt?
But after the AIDS epidemic claimed around 90 percent of his friends, a disease he himself narrowly and miraculously escaped, Darrow decided to move to San Francisco for a fresh start. He met his partner, Jeff, there and they moved to a cabin in Sonoma County.
Supposedly thousands of lovers and he is not HIV positive. It's a fucking miracle. When and why did he move to South Carolina?

According to the CNA story (I need to cut to the chase before I start chewing on my keyboard) this all happened because Darrow kept watching a nun on television. He seems to have become another professional ex-gay.

To further substantiate their rather porous case the story links to their idiotic 2015 film: “Desire of the Everlasting Hills” in which Darrow appears. According to the synopsis:
Paul, an international model who, after a life of self-indulgence, found grace in the last place he expected.
On the surface this all seems very silly and harmless. This is not harmless. Parents hear, read about and watch this nonsense and become convinced that their gay son or daughter can be “saved” from sin. Moreover the Church is supporting anti-gay stereotypes. In order to conform to the teachings of the Catholic Church, Paul Darrow is now supposedly celibate (they like the word “chaste”). His sexual orientation has been likened to a drug addiction, alcoholism or a bad habit which is untrue. If this story is true, what has Darrow really accomplished?

This also spreads the idea that gay men are unhappy, sex addicted and directionless. Parents need to know that their gay children can lead perfectly happy and fulfilling lives. They can marry and raise children. Occupationally they are only limited by their own perceptions of their ability. The Courage Ministry is a limiter of ambitions.

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