Despite CNN en Español anchor Juan Carlos López's acknowledgement that the banning of conversion therapy in England was a controversial issue, viewers of Directo USA were subjected to only one point of view on the issue, that of Dr. Elmer Huerta, a hematologist based in Washington, D.C., who hailed that country’s decision to disallow individuals from receiving the therapy.
With the ban, England now joins Brazil, Ecuador and Malta as the fourth nation that in fact, limits the freedom of speech and worse yet, the option of offering its citizens a therapy that many believe – and confirm – works.
DR. ELMER HUERTA: What are these therapies based upon? There are people who believe that it is a choice, that I choose to be this way, that the child chooses to be this way and that he is sick and that since he is sick, and they call homosexuality a disease, then it must be corrected.
Although anchor López said that the experience about the therapy's effectiveness “reveals that is it not entirely true” he and his guest, Dr. Huerta, failed to corroborate the statement claiming that the World Health Organization condemns it, as well as ignore peer-reviewed research that contradicts the prerogative that people are born gay and never change.
According to an expert on the issue of homosexuality, Quentin L. Van Meter, MD, the ban is in fact an assault on freedom of speech and regrettable for homosexuals who can benefit from the therapy, particularly those who voluntarily want to undergo conversion therapy, because their condition will be ignored, and their ailments shifted aside, attributed to “social stigmatization”.
While Dr. Huerta states that homosexuals are born that way and have no necessity of receiving conversion therapy, for they have no ailments, Dr. Van Meter states that the National Institute of Health´s Human Genome Project has shown no proof that homosexuality is genetic. Van Meter contends that the issue has escaped the realm of science and has become a political affair orchestrated by powerful lobby groups to silence doctors and scientists who sustain that voluntary conversion therapy can help address deeper underlying issues (often related to adverse childhood events) such as depression and anxiety that many homosexuals face and which can be worked through by using therapy. Dr. Van Meter pointed out critical studies regarding homosexuality such as those carried out by Dr Lawrence S. Meyer and Dr. Paul R Mc Hugh or Dr. Kenneth J. Zucker, PhD.
During the Directo USA interview, Dr. Huerta also used the tired scare tactic of claiming that the methodology for receiving conversion therapy includes raping girls so that through sexual intercourse they can be “corrected”, a sensationalist remark that Dr. Van Meter explains may have existed a century ago; today it is based on psychotherapy.
Regrettably, CNN en Español loses credibility for allowing advocacy to rule in its coverage of the issue or perhaps even worse, choosing to side with a ban that, in essence, threatens freedom of speech, a right that all media owe their existence to.
Below is the complete transcript of the above-referenced report, which aired last July 6, 2018 on CNN en Español Directo USA news program.
JUAN CARLOS LÓPEZ, ANCHOR, DIRECTO USA: Let's talk about something that is very controversial because there are those who believe it works but experience reveals that it is not entirely true, it is the famous conversion therapy?
DR. ELMER HUERTA: Yes, the conversion therapy of gay people Juan Carlos, this time the news comes from England. This week the English government has announced a measure providing six million dollars, so that in the coming months, conversion therapies for homosexual people will be prohibited in England.
What are these therapies based upon? There are people who believe that it is a choice, that I choose to be this way, that the child chooses to be this way and that he is sick and that since he is sick, and they call homosexuality a disease, then it must be corrected. How is it corrected? With medical treatments.
It is in the report Juan Carlos. There are very serious cases of raping girls for what? So that if the young lady or girl that says she is a lesbian she will know what it is like to have a sexual relationship and so she can correct herself, according to this way of thinking.
This type of treatment is known not to work, the World Health Organization condemns it Juan Carlos so I think that England is going to be the next country after Brazil, Ecuador and Malta to completely prohibit this type of treatment that serves no purpose.
LÓPEZ: It is a very controversial issue yet.