Anti-Gay Activist Uses Robin Williams’ Rehab To Argue ‘Ex-Gay’ Therapy Shouldn’t Be Banned


An anti-gay religious extremist who supports the deportation of all LGBT people has now abused the memory of Robin Williams by claiming his recent visit to rehab was ineffective and -- for some illogical reason -- therefore "ex-gay" therapy shouldn't be banned.

Leave it to the hate mongers at the certified anti-gay hate group Family Research Council to abuse the memory of Robin Williams and even ignore recent statements by Williams' wife about his sobriety and recent Parkinson's diagnosis.

FRC's Peter Sprigg, who infamously answered "yes" in 2010 when MSNBC's Chris Matthews asked him if "gay behavior should be outlawed," on Monday penned an article somehow conflating Williams' rehab visit to harmful "ex-gay" therapy.

"Apparently, Williams quit alcohol and drugs cold turkey in the early '80's, without any professional therapeutic intervention," Sprigg writes.

He reported that he stayed sober for twenty years, but then began drinking again while working on location in a remote town in Alaska. After three years of drinking, a "family intervention" persuaded Williams to enter "rehab" (residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation) at the Hazelden Addiction Treatment Center near Newberg, Oregon, where he stayed for two months. After that, Williams told The Guardian, he continued to attend meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous every week.

Then just last month, news broke that Williams had again returned to rehab, this time at a Hazelden center in Minnesota. A spokesman for Williams said that he had not relapsed into substance abuse, but was "simply taking the opportunity to fine-tune and focus on his continued commitment [to sobriety], of which he remains extremely proud." That was on July 1 — but six weeks later, he was dead.

Of course, it's inconvenient to Sprigg's twisted tale to include the facts that Williams' wife stated he was not abusing drugs or alcohol, and, sadly, he had recently been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.

"Robin's sobriety was intact and he was brave as he struggled with his own battles of depression, anxiety as well as early stages of Parkinson's disease, which he was not yet ready to share publicly," Williams' wife, Susan Schneider said.

But Sprigg, an ordained Baptist minister and FRC's Senior Fellow for Policy Studies, sees things differently.

Ignoring the readily-available history surrounding Williams' tragic suicide, Sprigg asks, "In light of this history, I have only one question for socially liberal political activists — why aren't you trying to outlaw rehab?"

I ask the question because such activists are trying to ban a form of mental health treatment — not drug and alcohol rehabilitation, but "sexual orientation change efforts" ("SOCE"), also known as "sexual reorientation therapy." Such therapy involves assisting people with unwanted same-sex attractions to overcome them.

Nothing like abusing the memory of an internationally-beloved comic genius who devoted his life to the happiness of others, to try to advance a scientifically harmful and hate-flled agenda.

Sprigg discounts that the American Psychological Association has deemed "ex-gay" or "reparative" therapy harmful and ineffective, claiming they are no less safe or ineffective than "any other form of mental health treatment" -- which is clearly false.

There are good, solid reasons the Southern Poverty Law Center deems the Family Research Council a certified hate group -- primarily its dissemination of falsehoods about LGBT people. 

Add Sprigg and his falsehoods to that list.


Image: FRC

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