Judge Rules Against Jennifer Keeton, Counseling Student Who Supports Reparative Therapy

Do you remember Jennifer Keeton? She was the Augusta State University counseling student kicked out of her masters program after she admitted she supported conversion therapy and that if a patient told her he was gay, she would tell him he need to be “cured.”

The school insisted she take a diversity-sensitivity course and when she refused, she got the boot. Keeton brought suit against the school for violating her constitutional rights in 2010. And then filed an appeal when the case was thrown out.

Well, she lost again.

Says the Georgia Federal District Court:

“Keeton’s conflation of personal and professional values, or at least her difficulty in discerning the difference, appears to have been rooted in her opinion that the immorality of homosexual relations is a matter of objective and absolute moral truth. The policies which govern the ethical conduct of counselors, however, with their focus on client welfare and self-determination, make clear that the counselor’s professional environs are not intended to be a crucible for counselors to test metaphysical or moral propositions.

Plato’s Academy or a seminary the Counselor Program is not; that Keeton’s opinions were couched in absolute or ontological terms does not give her constitutional license to make it otherwise…

Keeton’s allegations do not show that imposition of the remediation plan was substantially motivated by her personal religious views. The plan was instead imposed “because she was unwilling to comply with the ACA Code of Ethics.”

After dismissing all of Keeton’s claims, Judge James Randal Hall clarified that “when someone voluntarily chooses to enter a profession, he or she must comply with its rules and ethical requirements.” So hopefully after two years of litigation, Keetongets that while homosexuality is not a choice, your career path is.

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