lazy journalism

Is CNN Still Inviting Quacks to Discuss Homosexuality? Oh Look, There’s Ex-Gay Richard Cohen

Continuing its Guilty As Charged Tour in giving platforms to America’s hate leaders, CNN invited Richard Cohen, the ex-gay advocate, on the network to discuss California’s bizarre 60-year-old law that remains on the books calling for the state to search for a cure for homosexuality. Except the only reason to invite Cohen — who in 2002 was barred from the American Counseling Association — on a program is to give him a chance to admit his gross abuses of human psychology, not as a purported expert on the “reversible” nature of homosexuality.

Immutable characteristics cannot be changed, and it’s an absolute farce for the media to continue to engage in such conversations — unless CNN is prepared to host a segment on how white people can become black, and humans can become donkeys.

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #cnn #kyraphillips #richardcohen stories and more


  • Jon


  • Jason

    This is why I don’t consume corporate news.

  • christopher di spirito

    The only hope for CNN is for Ted Turner to come out of retirement and buy back the once mighty cable network and clean house.

    This would entail firing everyone — and I mean everyone and hiring real journalists and rehiring the journalists they fired like Aaron Brown and Thomas Roberts.

    Then, return to real news and not these bizarre news magazine formats and special interest docu-fakeries.

    As is, CNN in competing with FIXED News, has seen half their audience disappear in the past 12 months. As long as CNN has a wealthy uncle in the form of Time Warner to pay the bills, don’t expect things to change in Atlanta.

  • JR

    Boycott CNN

  • tjr101

    This is what disgust me about CNN. To appear as if they are covering both sides of an issue they would bring on nutjobs like this giving them legitimacy in the mainstream.

  • Pip

    Doesn’t CNN realize this guy has been banned by the APA? This discussion is literally the equivalent of having a doctor debate a voodoo medicine man on heart disease.

  • biguy

    This guy is just pathetic and looks creepy.

  • Cam

    To the people that keep saying “Why does Anderson Cooper need to come out of the closet?” Well this is why.

  • Nicholas

    Stupid so-called “journalists” cover each “side” of an issue 50/50…giving 50% of the time to Nazis, 50% of the time to Jews.

    Real journalists seek the truth. Truth is dignity for everyone; truth is not prejudice; truth is science-based and not non-truth based; truth is not believing quacks who talk out of their asses and then giving them precious air time to vomit out their hateful views.

    CNN errs too much too often on the side of stupid journalism. That is the truth.

  • terrwill

    Is CNN so damm ascared of Faux News that they are attempting to lure in the rightwing lunatics by giving a lying, selfhating, vile, reprehensive scumbag like this air time????

    The reason this scumbag is an “ex-Gay” is that he couldn’t get a Gay lay in the darkest corner of a backroom with his truly disturbing looks…….

  • Wade MacMorrighan

    Actually, what no News program is telling anyone is that he’s an “Ex-Gay” because of his religion! NO ONE has ever publicly said that it’s ONLY the offensive Christians who believe (incorrectly) that Gay people out to “change”.

  • Alexander A.

    The front page had this under the heading of “Lazy Journalism”, but let us be frank: this is not lazy, this is irresponsible journalism at it’s core. This is taking one side of one story, and presenting it as an ‘expert opinion’, with no counterpoint available. If Cohen’s message reaches even ONE person, CNN should be responsible for any and all actions taken on behalf of that person, because they were IRRESPONSIBLE. Not biased, not partisan, but careless. This is NOT how professionals behave, CNN; you’ve been around long enough that you should know that.

  • craig

    I am bisexual, I choose to have gay sex with men.
    This guy, is perhaps just a bi man who is prejudiced against his gay side.

    Why does the main stream gay community not use this highly probable fact, some bi men repress their gay side. Kinsey thought we are all bisexual – but most people have strong preferences one way or the other.

    I know some gay guys must be damaged by this idea therapy can ‘cure’ them – pretending it is an illness. But to deny this opportunity to effectively undermine these ignorant arguments is just wrong. Science backs this up, rather than it just being a political POV.

  • ossurworld

    If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, kwak.

  • Scott

    Haha his son in the blue shirt is sooooo gay!

  • Scott in NYC

    Is there an actual living, breathing person who believes a single word this man says, down to him saying he’s an “EX” gay? I admire him for creating a business niche for himself as an ex-gay which has blossomed, apparently, into a political commentator. That he does it on the backs (so to speak) of millions of innocent homosexual people, however, is repugnant.

  • ewe

    She is emotionally disturbed.

  • tjr101

    @Scott in NYC:

    “Is there an actual living, breathing person who believes a single word this man says, down to him saying he’s an “EX” gay? ”
    Yes, unfortunately. We live in a very ignorant country and there are millions of evangelical Christians alone that belief homosexuality can be “cured.”

  • Tommy

    I don’t think the gay community helps itself when it tries to ban people who they disagree with from speaking or being heard. In fact by banning them, we allow them to portray themselves as victims and give them more power and credibility.
    In fact, I wish these ex-gay types were in the media more. Because then everyone will see how ridiculous and wrong headed they are. You must think the average American is stupid that they are somehow going to think what these nutcases say have any validity.
    But if they are going to have them on, they have a responsibility to have someone from a gay rights organization to show our point of view just like we have the Republican and the Democratic point of view in debates.

  • Matt

    If you’re sick of CNN inviting Cohen onto their news programs to promote his deluded agenda, become a member of and help promote Facebook group Gays & allies against CNN’s legitimization of Richard Cohen at:

    …and make your feelings known to CNN!

  • Kieran

    For only $499 plus s&h you too can get Cohen’s latest audiotape program to learn the secrets of becoming ex-homosexual. If you order now, we’ll even throw in two tickets (one for you and one for your compassionate heterosexual mentor) to a Yankees ballgame.

  • Matt

    Yes, I can’t believe people actually quote Spitzer’s 2003 (not 2002, like Cohen said) article. The methods are of such poor quality that they’re an embarrassment. In no way does it suggest that Repairative Therapy (whatever that really means) is a causal factor in self-reported sexual orientation (let alone behavior). At most it shows that Spitzer could find a large sample of white Christian men in the south who are willing to give testimonials of Exodus International over the phone 12 years after actually being in therapy. And it certainly says nothing of the ethical implications. If that’s the best that Cohen can do, than he’s more of a fraud that I thought.

  • Rashid

    @craig: Thank you Craig. That’s a very important and valid point that many might not consider. Human sexuality is a wide, varying spectrum.

  • Hugh7

    Every time someone says they’re “ex”-gay, they seem to turn out to be a sexual abuse survivor. Someone should do a study. Maybe abuse creates some kind of pseudo-homosexuality that CAN be changed.Or maybe abusing gay kids make them hate their gayness enough to change their behaviour (it doesn’t seem to change their orientation). I don’t know where the sanctimony comes from – religion, maybe.

Comments are closed.