December 20, 2023

Faulty LGBT Suicide Science

A major flaw has been exposed in studies that purport to show that so-called “conversion therapy” leads to higher rates of suicide.

One of the biggest clubs the Rainbow Mafia wields against those who object to the normalization and cultural promulgation of homosexuality and “transgenderism” has been the claim that failure to affirm an individual’s sexual orientation or “identity” is tantamount to wishing them dead.

There is indeed a higher suicide rate among those engaging in these lifestyles or suffering mental illness presenting as gender dysphoria. Yet that is presented as proof positive that lack of broad cultural acceptance is primarily responsible for their deaths.

To make this intellectually dishonest case, proponents cite a number of studies that supposedly back up their assertion. The trouble is that most of these studies are either classic examples of junk science, or, in the case of one of the more popular studies, the data actually undercuts the authors’ claim.

In the above case, Paul Sullins, a research professor at The Catholic University of America and senior researcher for the Ruth Institute, recently reran the data behind the popular study that supposedly concluded that “conversion therapy” led to higher suicide rates. What Sullins found was that “the evidence shows that SOCE [sexual orientation change efforts] is fairly effective at preventing suicide attempts.”

In other words, the study’s data showed the exact opposite of what its authors claimed. To make matters worse, Sullins found that every published study on people struggling with sexual orientation distress going back to 2009 contained the same scientific flaw.

It’s a case of bad science leading to bad policy.

The major flaw in the studies is the failure to control for suicidal thoughts or attempts by LGBTQ-identifying individuals prior to any “conversion therapy” experience. In other words, these studies beg the question and then interpret the data to back up the preconceived conclusion.

As a side note, we might argue that “gender-affirming care” is a twisted form of conversion therapy — one in which the recipient of that “care” is led to believe he or she will actually convert to the opposite gender. That such patients are already deeply troubled is self-evident.

Back to the scientific research, it is based in part upon these flawed studies that several states have enacted legislation banning so-called “conversion therapy” on the false justification that doing so saves lives. Furthermore, the dubious studies may even be influencing the U.S. Supreme Court, which recently saw conservative Justices John Roberts, Amy Coney Barrett, and Neil Gorsuch join with the Court’s left wing in refusing to take up a case challenging laws banning therapists from conferring with patients suffering from unwanted same-sex attraction and gender dysphoria.

How such bans are not a violation of First Amendment rights both of speech and religion is difficult to argue. But the obvious goal for the Rainbow Mafia is to eventually make it a crime to object to the promotion of sexual deviancy.

Furthermore, the sad irony is that many of these studies actually show that patients expressing unwanted same-sex attraction or gender dysphoria are many times more suicidal, not because of some lack of wider social acceptance but because of a deeper mental health issue. Thus, by refusing to address mental health and moral challenges and simply “affirming” these individuals in their self-deceit, they are being consigned to a life of despair.

It is the belief that there is not any real hope for change that can unfortunately lead some individuals to suicide. Ultimately, the problem isn’t only that the studies’ flaw comes to the wrong conclusion, but that the wrong conclusion is in many instances leading to the creation of laws that prevent troubled individuals from getting the help they need.

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