Ex-Gay Leader Erased

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It seems that if we wait long enough, anyone who rises to prominence in the “ex-gay” movement will eventually be caught doing precisely the thing that he has renounced and denounces. The latest to fall is Norman Goldwasser, an Orthodox Jewish therapist at Horizon Psychological Services, who gained national prominence with a 2006 paper that compared “SSA” (same-sex attraction) to obsessive-compulsive disorder and recommended a similar line of treatment. Well, recently he was caught soliciting sexual partners on Manhunt using the profile name “Hotnhairy72.” The sting was carried out by Wayne Besen, founder of Truth Wins Out, when he made contact with Goldwasser, who was using the pseudonym “Dave” on Manhunt and offered to meet Besen at a Fort Lauderdale motel room. (“Hotnhairy72” also had a presence on Bear Nation.) The timing is noteworthy what with the movie Boy Erased in wide release, especially since Goldwasser was a funnel for clients into the Journey into Manhood program, where gay males are taken into the woods to participate in activities designed to “cure” them of gayness. These programs have a notoriously low rate of success, as witness the tendency to backslide into man hunting. One is tempted to say: well, there’s your problem right there. Taking a bunch of gay dudes into the woods for extended periods sure doesn’t seem like a formula for sparking an attraction to the opposite sex.

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