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Dr. Oz Used ‘Ex-Gay Therapy’ To Spike Ratings — His Own Blog Proves It



var addthis_config = {“data_track_addressbar”:true};Dr. Oz – the TV doctor whose show is produced by Oprah Winfrey’s HARPO Productions company — apparently is not above using a known and medically-denounced practice to gin up controversy — and ratings. Oz may be against so-called “ex-gay therapy,” aka, “pray-away-the-gay,” but he had no moral compunction against using it to drive up ratings yesterday.

For the record, “ex-gay therapy,” which claims to be able to “cure” people of homosexuality, is dangerous, harmful, fraudulent, and has been denounced by practically every reputable major medical organization.

Oz even used his show yesterday to host a representative from NARTH, a discredited “ex-gay” organization.

The folks at GLAAD tell the story well:

One day after the airing of a show in which Dr. Oz discussed “both sides” of a debunked and dangerous practice, often called “reparative therapy”, he has now written a blog post distancing himself from the practice.

In a joint statement issued following the show, GLAAD, PFLAG, and GLSEN roundly condemned the show’s placement of so-called “reparative therapy” practitioners alongside doctors and people who have been harmed by their experience in such programs.

In his blog, Dr. Oz has taken a less neutral position, pointing out that  the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, and other respected medical organizations completely oppose such programs. He continues to maintain that conversations about such practices need to be had, but finally weighs in with his own position.

His position?

On today’s controversial show, we discussed forms of therapy that are designed to turn a gay person straight. Currently, there are still a handful of therapists who still perform this on teenagers and adults who are uncomfortable with their sexual orientation – despite the fact that the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, and other respected medical organizations oppose this therapy, claiming that it doesn’t work and that it may be potentially harmful.

I felt that we needed to include all parties who have considered reparative therapy to hear the stories of people who have tried these treatments.  Although some viewers may disagree with this tactic, if we want to reach everyone who might benefit from understanding the risks of this therapy, you have to present multiple perspectives.

It’s good to know that Dr.Oz considers his approach a “tactic,” but, “you have to present multiple perspectives,” is false.

Dr. Oz bills himself as a cardiac surgeon and “Vice-Chair and Professor of Surgery at Columbia University.” Would he present a shaman, a witchdoctor, a faith healer among the “multiple perspectives” he’d present to a patient whom he knows needs a heart transplant or surgery?

Oz continues:

Some guests argued that they have been changed through these treatments, but I was overwhelmed by the pain of individuals hurt by the experience.  After listening to both sides of the issue and after reviewing the available medical data, I agree with the established medical consensus.  I have not found enough published data supporting positive results with gay reparative therapy, and I have concerns about the potentially dangerous effects when the therapy fails, especially when minors are forced into treatments.

Meanwhile, GLAAD offers this excellent bit of detective work:

Even with this statement, it seems as though Dr. Oz is attempting to be more neutral than he really is. The time stamp for his blog is 11/28/2012 at 8:47 AM, well before the program aired. Additionally, if you look at the URL, you can see that the blog post was originally titled something like, “The gay cure: shame masquerading as medicine.” That is certainly quite different than the more innocuous sounding “The Reparative Therapy Controversy,” which still implies that this is an ongoing debate, which it is not.

GLAAD sums up their report with this important statement:

It is a positive step that Dr. Oz has finally publicly stated that he is not neutral on such a dangerous practice. However, issuing a blog statement does not negate the fact that millions of people watched his program and potentially walked away hoping to find a way to hide or repress a part of themselves, or worse, their children. As a new lawsuit against JONAH, a Jewish “ex-gay” program is demonstrating, anyone who felt for the promises of change from Dr. Oz’s guests may be at best disappointed, and at worst severely damaged. The media must handle this topic responsibly, or risk spreading dangerous, unchallenged misinformation to audiences.

Even though GLAAD is too generous to state it, I’m not.

This thoroughly indicts Dr. Oz as nothing more than a Jerry Springer wannabe, and who pays for it? Vulnerable people brainwashed by religious fanatics.

Shame on Dr. Oz — whose Hippocratic oath seems to me to be a little flexible — and HARPO for using people in pain to attract ratings.

We’ll do our best to get video of this when it becomes available.

For now, while I’m loath to send him traffic, you can see clips from the show at Dr. Oz’s website, where GLAAD and GLSEN did a great job refuting the notions of “ex-gay therapy.”

Shame on Dr. Oz.

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‘Taking Us All for Fools’: Critics Decimate Greg Abbott’s Claims and Defense of His Actions in Wake of School Shooting



Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott in a press conference that left reporters frustrated defended his actions and insisted his earlier praise for law enforcement’s widely criticized response to the Uvalde school massacre was the result of being “misled.”

“I am livid about what happened,” Abbott declared, blaming others for his “recitation of what people in that room told me.”

Critics aren’t buying his claims.

Abbott, who’s in the middle of a heated re-election campaign, appeared extremely defensive when reporters asked him questions.

“Let’s be clear about one thing. None of the laws I signed this past session had any intersection with this crime at all,” Abbott told reporters when asked if he would call the legislature back for a special session, as The Texas Tribune’s Sewell Chan noted.

“No law that I signed allowed him to get a gun,” Abbott insisted.

“The answers fell pretty flat,” opined MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace, who noted the press event lasted just 36 minutes, less time than the police officers “stood outside and did nothing,” which was 47 minutes.

Abbott ended the press conference with many reporters almost begging him to take more questions. As the governor got up and left one frustrated reporter was caught on a hot mic saying “unbelievable.”

Chan, who is the editor in chief of the Tribune, added on Twitter: “Abbott rejects background checks as a simplistic and ineffective fix. Wouldn’t have prevented Sutherland Springs and Santa Fe shootings, he says. Tries to turn focus to broken mental health system.”

Former FBI assistant director for counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi on MSNBC delivered a strong rebuke to Governor Abbott’s remarks.

“No amount of free flights, no amount of free caskets, no amount of mental health counseling is going to bring back any one of those murdered children,” Figliuzzi said, referring to Abbott’s announcement an anonymous donor is putting up  $175,000 for funeral expenses of those who were murdered in the shooting and said the state will pay for mental health treatment.

Abbott also insisted that since Texas became a state it’s been legal for 18-year-olds to buy long guns.

Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jaime was murdered in the Parkland school shooting, blasted Abbott:

And long guns of today, as Figliuzzi noted, are often semi-automatic “killing machines.”

“The governor seems completely unable to understand that he can easily make a distinction when you’re talking about whether an 18-year-old should buy an assault rifle or not. And all he cares about is a century of history in Texas on long guns. We didn’t have the AR-15 style assault weapons back then.  He can easily make a distinction and say, ‘you can go hunting, here are the rifles you can do, you can buy, you can possess – and here’s an assault-style rifle.'”

“If he thinks that people are stupid and unable to understand that there is a clear distinction between a killing machine and a hunting rifle, that he’s taking us all for fools.”


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‘I Apologize for Interrupting Your Press Conference’: Tearful Texas Democrat Urges Greg Abbott to ‘Do Something’ on Guns



The Texas Democratic State Senator who represents Uvalde stood up during Greg Abbott’s Friday afternoon press conference and almost begged the Republican Governor to “do something” about gun violence after Tuesday’s massacre at Robb Elementary School that took 21 lives.

Abbott was trying to place the blame for the school shooting on mental health despite the gunman having no documented issues, and told attendees, “we’re focusing our attention on the wrong thing.”

That was not good enough for Democratic State Senator Roland Gutierrez, who politely introduced himself and said, “I’m not making a political speech.”

“My colleagues are asking for a special session, you’re getting a letter tomorrow,” from the Senate Democratic Caucus.

“We’ve asked for gun control changes – I’m asking you now, bring us back in three weeks.”

Gutierrez grew emotional, sounding as if he was choking up, and added, “I apologize for interrupting your press conference about the needs of this community. I’ve been here for three days with all of these elected officials – this county judge has been working his ass off,” he continued.

“I don’t know how to express the loss of the families that I’ve talked to,” he added.

“You have to do something, man,” Gutierrez said, all but begging the governor to take action, and saying his “own colleagues are calling me and telling me this is enough.”


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Watch: Right Wing Host at NRA Convention Likens 18 Year Olds Buying Guns to 3rd Graders Deciding Gender



A host from a right-wing streaming service covering the NRA convention in Houston decided to compare conservatives’ growing active opposition to the rights and existence of transgender people, to the majority of Americans demanding expanded gun control legislation.

“We are being told by the left that a third-grader has the knowledge to determine if they were born a boy or they were born a girl, whether or not they want to stay that gender that they were born with,” said Brian Glenn, Right Side Broadcasting’s director of programming and correspondent.

“And if we feel like at a third grade you can make decisions on your gender, then I think by the time you’re 18 you should have enough maturity – assuming you’re not a complete psychopath – to buy a handgun and exercise your Second Amendment.”

Of course, that hypothetical third-grader is harming exactly no one and later can reverse that decision if they choose, which the vast majority do not.

That hypothetical 18-year old, or, in the case of this week’s horrific tragedy, an actual 18-year old, buying two AR-15 style assault weapons and hundreds of rounds of ammunition within three days of their 18th birthday, gunning down 21 people including 19 elementary school children, cannot reverse any of those decisions.



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