Leave it to a group of teenagers to bring a bit of sanity to the world.
When a billboard promoting so-called gay conversion therapy went up in Elk River, Minnesota, a group of high school students decided to protest on the steps of the Minnesota State Capitol.
“We noticed the sign a few weeks ago and we knew instantaneously that it needed to be taken down. It’s not OK,” said 17-year-old Emily Motin, who helped coordinate the protest.
We love the word “instantaneously” here — it’s a refreshing bit of common sense we keep seeing in younger generations.
The sign advertises counseling by David Pickup, a licensed marriage and family therapist who practices in California and Texas, and says, “Do gay feelings mean you’re “born gay?” People around the world say no!”
Motin and the six other students held their own signs on the Capitol steps that said “Gay is okay” and “Can’t convert love.” Their message is a lot simpler than Pickup’s — gay kids need love, they say, not conversion therapy.
Minnesota’s Pro Family Forum placed the ad on Pickup’s behalf in response to an effort by some state lawmakers to ban ex-gay therapy.
President Obama has called for a national end to practicing conversion therapy on minors, and legislation has been slow to follow.
Only New Jersey, California and Washington D.C. have successfully banned the therapy on minors, despite there being no scientific demonstration of its effectiveness shown in the last 40 years. Legislation is currently underway in Illinois and New York to ban it.
Here’s hoping there are a lot more high school students out there like these ones in Minnesota.