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Jersey City, NJ - Gay Conversion Therapy Group Targeting Orthodox Community Being Sued

Published on: November 27, 2012 07:50 PM
By: AP
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Chaim Levin, left, and Michael Ferguson,  right,  with his partner Seth Anderson, listen to a a news conference, in New York, Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012. Levin, of the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn. NY, and Ferguson, of Salt Lake City, are two of four gay men accusing a New Jersey organization of selling "conversion therapy" services promising to make them straight. Instead, they told the news conference that they were subjected to humiliations, including having to strip naked, or taking a baseball bat to effigies of their mothers.  (AP Photo/Richard Drew)Chaim Levin, left, and Michael Ferguson,  right,  with his partner Seth Anderson, listen to a a news conference, in New York, Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012. Levin, of the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn. NY, and Ferguson, of Salt Lake City, are two of four gay men accusing a New Jersey organization of selling "conversion therapy" services promising to make them straight. Instead, they told the news conference that they were subjected to humiliations, including having to strip naked, or taking a baseball bat to effigies of their mothers.  (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Jersey City, NJ - Four gay men accused a New Jersey organization of fraud Tuesday for selling “conversion therapy” with false promises to make them straight.

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They said during a Manhattan news conference that they were subjected to humiliations that included stripping naked and taking a baseball bat to effigies of their mothers.

The four attended sessions at the Jersey City, N.J.-based Jews Offering New Alternatives to Healing, or JONAH. The nonprofit advertises in Jewish publications and claims to rid men of same-sex attractions.

Three of the men are Jewish — Chaim Levin, Benjamin Unger, and Sheldon Bruck. The fourth, Michael Ferguson, is a Mormon now living in Salt Lake City who was a college student in New York when he signed up for the services.

The men say in a lawsuit that the methods do not work and should not be marketed under New Jersey’s consumer protection laws. They say the suit was filed Tuesday in New Jersey, but officials there could not confirm receiving it.

The men say in the suit that JONAH’s practices included telling them “that gay sexual orientation is a mental disorder and gay people must change to straight in order to lead satisfying and happy lives” and “that when conversion therapy does not produce the promised results, the clients themselves are to blame for not sufficiently investing in and surrendering to Defendants’ services.”

JONAH did not return calls requesting comment.

The group’s mission statement on its website says JONAH is “dedicated to educating the world-wide Jewish community about the social, cultural and emotional factors which lead to same-sex attractions.”

Its claim that being gay is a mental disorder that can be reversed has been rejected by the American Psychiatric Association.

Speaking for the men at Tuesday’s news conference were attorneys from the Southern Poverty Law Center, a Montgomery, Ala.-based civil rights organization.

“JONAH profits off of shameful and dangerous attempts to fix something that isn’t broken,” said Christine P. Sun, the center’s deputy legal director. “Despite the consensus of mainstream professional organizations that conversion therapy doesn’t work, this racket continues to scam vulnerable gay men and lesbians out of thousands of dollars and inflicts significant harm on them.”

California has taken action against providers of conversion therapy.

Last month, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill that prohibits licensed mental health professionals from using so-called reparative or conversion therapies with clients under age 18. Brown called the therapies “quackery” that “have no basis in science or medicine.”

Two New Jersey lawmakers are drafting similar legislation.


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1

 Nov 27, 2012 at 08:11 PM Anonymous Says:

Whatever you think about gay marriage, these "conversion" groups are just as much a fraud as the yidden for yushka or other scam organizations and should simply be ignored.

2

 Nov 27, 2012 at 08:16 PM ModernLakewoodGuy Says:

So sad that these men are so persecuted they were driven to these desperate attempts to change the core of who they are.

3

 Nov 27, 2012 at 08:21 PM judith Says:

sad.

4

 Nov 27, 2012 at 08:30 PM Practice What You Preach Says:

Many in the frum community have a very hard time accepting anyone who's "different." That includes gays, Ethiopian Jews, kids with learning issues, people from different ethnic backgrounds, people who are single past a certain age, people with developmental challenges, etc., etc.

They will judge you. They will ostracize you. They will treat you shabbily. They will try to make you into carbon copies of themselves. Just because you're different. And it makes them very, very uncomfortable to accept the fact that YOU are YOU, and you are perfect just the way you are.

DO NOT LET THEM INTO YOUR HEAD! Never allow yourself to look at the world through THEIR eyes. Use your own lens to view others and yourself. Celebrate your differences. Teach THEM tolerance. Maybe even teach them acceptance. Ahavas Yisroel is something they preach. But do they practice it?

5

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:07 PM inNY Says:

Reply to #4  
Practice What You Preach Says:

Many in the frum community have a very hard time accepting anyone who's "different." That includes gays, Ethiopian Jews, kids with learning issues, people from different ethnic backgrounds, people who are single past a certain age, people with developmental challenges, etc., etc.

They will judge you. They will ostracize you. They will treat you shabbily. They will try to make you into carbon copies of themselves. Just because you're different. And it makes them very, very uncomfortable to accept the fact that YOU are YOU, and you are perfect just the way you are.

DO NOT LET THEM INTO YOUR HEAD! Never allow yourself to look at the world through THEIR eyes. Use your own lens to view others and yourself. Celebrate your differences. Teach THEM tolerance. Maybe even teach them acceptance. Ahavas Yisroel is something they preach. But do they practice it?

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

6

 Nov 27, 2012 at 08:45 PM anonymous Says:

Hashem yirachaim! Its no wonder we have sandy and Hamas to deal with,!

7

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:13 PM chayala Says:

Reply to #2  
ModernLakewoodGuy Says:

So sad that these men are so persecuted they were driven to these desperate attempts to change the core of who they are.

They're core of a person is not based in race color or religion, its based on ethics, they're behavior is not accepting to anyone!

8

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:08 PM chayala Says:

Reply to #4  
Practice What You Preach Says:

Many in the frum community have a very hard time accepting anyone who's "different." That includes gays, Ethiopian Jews, kids with learning issues, people from different ethnic backgrounds, people who are single past a certain age, people with developmental challenges, etc., etc.

They will judge you. They will ostracize you. They will treat you shabbily. They will try to make you into carbon copies of themselves. Just because you're different. And it makes them very, very uncomfortable to accept the fact that YOU are YOU, and you are perfect just the way you are.

DO NOT LET THEM INTO YOUR HEAD! Never allow yourself to look at the world through THEIR eyes. Use your own lens to view others and yourself. Celebrate your differences. Teach THEM tolerance. Maybe even teach them acceptance. Ahavas Yisroel is something they preach. But do they practice it?

They're not different, different is race, color, religion etc they're sick and BTW nobody is judging or looking at them funny, I don't give such people the time of the day

9

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:07 PM ohvei Says:

(reply to 4)Lets leave the "frum community" out of the picture, what about the torah? Do you know that in the days of the beis Hamikdosh, if someone had sex with a guy he has to be killed with "Skilah" . Maybe you think the torah is fanatic, not enough liberal.Then you could decide to leave the torah (or chose whatever you like from the torah) so then you're not believing in toras moshe then i understand you're point of view. but for someone who is a mamin in toras moshe i dont see any way that Gay could be Acceptable.

10

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:16 PM gawking Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

inNY, your bigotry is only outshone by your ignorance of Torah. The torah does not say "gays are no good" at all, nowhere, not a single letter, word, or pasuk makes that claim, not the way you wrote it and not the concept you claimed. And being that gay people are born that way and you may very well have a son or daughter or cousin or friends who is or will be gay you may want to let go of your personal hatred and bigotry and learn that this world is much more nuanced that you can imagine. The man spent 18 months with JONAH trying to change because of hateful people like you and it didnt work, he tried to submit himself to live by your parameters, not his, and failed, and this is how you respond? I would apologize of I were you.

11

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:18 PM inNY Says:

Reply to #10  
gawking Says:

inNY, your bigotry is only outshone by your ignorance of Torah. The torah does not say "gays are no good" at all, nowhere, not a single letter, word, or pasuk makes that claim, not the way you wrote it and not the concept you claimed. And being that gay people are born that way and you may very well have a son or daughter or cousin or friends who is or will be gay you may want to let go of your personal hatred and bigotry and learn that this world is much more nuanced that you can imagine. The man spent 18 months with JONAH trying to change because of hateful people like you and it didnt work, he tried to submit himself to live by your parameters, not his, and failed, and this is how you respond? I would apologize of I were you.

When was the last time you learned Chumash??

12

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:02 PM chayala Says:

Reply to #4  
Practice What You Preach Says:

Many in the frum community have a very hard time accepting anyone who's "different." That includes gays, Ethiopian Jews, kids with learning issues, people from different ethnic backgrounds, people who are single past a certain age, people with developmental challenges, etc., etc.

They will judge you. They will ostracize you. They will treat you shabbily. They will try to make you into carbon copies of themselves. Just because you're different. And it makes them very, very uncomfortable to accept the fact that YOU are YOU, and you are perfect just the way you are.

DO NOT LET THEM INTO YOUR HEAD! Never allow yourself to look at the world through THEIR eyes. Use your own lens to view others and yourself. Celebrate your differences. Teach THEM tolerance. Maybe even teach them acceptance. Ahavas Yisroel is something they preach. But do they practice it?

Ahavas yisroel follows ahavas hashem, which these men obviously don't have. Different is acceptable, chilul hashem is not. Hashem created man then woman, so they too can further create! Can 2 men create?no!can 2 woman create? NO! What they can do is what we call
LUST! Which is not different! ITS. A SIN!

14

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:21 PM gawking Says:

Reply to #11  
inNY Says:

When was the last time you learned Chumash??

Brilliant answer, keep proving how much of an Am Ha'aretz you are.

16

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:27 PM COMPASSion Says:

The Torah Hakdosha does not say "clear" that Gays are NO good. The Torah says a certain act between two men is no good. It does not say that homosexuality is a disease or an abnormality that can be cured. If anything, it's the opposite. The fact that it's listed just like a lot of other arayos shows that the Torah considers it a normal ta'avah, and one that should be withstood. No more, no less.

How much a person withstands his or her own taavos is between that person and Hashem. It is not for quack organizations to make money off the misery of those who are made to feel like sick people for having ta'avos that Hashem gave them but they harm nobody but themselves.

17

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:29 PM I hate to break it to you... Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

but the Torah says that the act of having relations with someone of the same sex is assur, not the desire for someone of the same sex. One can have the desire, but if he doesn't act on it, then there is no issue.

19

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:39 PM ayinglefunadorf Says:

Reply to #9  
ohvei Says:

(reply to 4)Lets leave the "frum community" out of the picture, what about the torah? Do you know that in the days of the beis Hamikdosh, if someone had sex with a guy he has to be killed with "Skilah" . Maybe you think the torah is fanatic, not enough liberal.Then you could decide to leave the torah (or chose whatever you like from the torah) so then you're not believing in toras moshe then i understand you're point of view. but for someone who is a mamin in toras moshe i dont see any way that Gay could be Acceptable.

So everyone who does on issur doayrayse should leave the Torah???? You will not have a minyan left in Lakewood,Willi,BP etc Steeling is OSUR for a start.

20

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:41 PM seicheldik Says:

i'm not an expert. But if you learn alot of torah. you'll get a cure!

21

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:46 PM Anonymous Says:

I have known at least 20 Frum kids who have committed suicide because they were not accepted. Is the death of our kinder worth it? I think not! You'd be surprised how many of our youth are in the closet for fear of being kicked out. Instead, they turn to drugs, alcohol or worse, they marry a nice girl and then both are miserable.

22

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:53 PM TorahJew89 Says:

Chaim is not a Chillul Hashem. Quite to the contrary, he is a Kiddush Hashem. May we all have the zchus to be as brave as him and report abuse whenever we experience it. The violence of your rhetoric creates the very conditions for the violence he and far too many other gay and lesbian people encounter on a daily basis.

23

 Nov 27, 2012 at 09:59 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

What Torah are you reading from. My torah specifies one specific gay act as being an abomination. It says nothing about having attraction for the same gender. And unless you are G-d, you couldn't possibly know what sins people are committing behind closed doors. We are all created "btzelem elokim" and we all must be treated with respect and love.

24

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:01 PM Shalom Says:

The TORAH hakdosha will never change. the torah is clear velo sasuru.....zonim achrehem
.....
if you do these things you are to be killed and that goes for today the gemara says we dont have capitol punishment but Hkbh has his ways to kill evul doers. now if we see such things or hear these things we have an obligation to object and state the torah way they shoyld be killed. guess what the torah says vayehargo ish es achiv you shall kill even rachml your brother.....
bow you number 4 you are an influence of our times with a twisted liberal mind set everythig goes everything is ok and there is even a term for it .so it must be ok. start learning torah and getting close to hkbh cry bitter tears for your thought process cause its faulty .

25

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:02 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #12  
chayala Says:

Ahavas yisroel follows ahavas hashem, which these men obviously don't have. Different is acceptable, chilul hashem is not. Hashem created man then woman, so they too can further create! Can 2 men create?no!can 2 woman create? NO! What they can do is what we call
LUST! Which is not different! ITS. A SIN!

what about an infertile woman, can she create? What about a sterile man, can he create? You are the one here with no ahavas yisroel or ahavas Hashem to think you are loftier than G-d Himself giving yourself permission to judge your fellow man.

26

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:22 PM Y-Love Says:

Bli ayin hara! 12 comments, 75% positive so far and pro-inclusion of everyone in k'lal Yisra'el. baruch Hashem!

31

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:33 PM esther Says:

Reply to #1  
Anonymous Says:

Whatever you think about gay marriage, these "conversion" groups are just as much a fraud as the yidden for yushka or other scam organizations and should simply be ignored.

how do you know it's quackery? this lifestyle is assur despite of what's currently popularly accepted.

32

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:34 PM esther Says:

Reply to #2  
ModernLakewoodGuy Says:

So sad that these men are so persecuted they were driven to these desperate attempts to change the core of who they are.

the core of 3 of these men are is a jewish neshama that is desperate t get out of this life style.

33

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:36 PM esther Says:

Reply to #10  
gawking Says:

inNY, your bigotry is only outshone by your ignorance of Torah. The torah does not say "gays are no good" at all, nowhere, not a single letter, word, or pasuk makes that claim, not the way you wrote it and not the concept you claimed. And being that gay people are born that way and you may very well have a son or daughter or cousin or friends who is or will be gay you may want to let go of your personal hatred and bigotry and learn that this world is much more nuanced that you can imagine. The man spent 18 months with JONAH trying to change because of hateful people like you and it didnt work, he tried to submit himself to live by your parameters, not his, and failed, and this is how you respond? I would apologize of I were you.

c'mon,it's the torah's parameters and therefore should be all of ours as well.

34

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:37 PM frumboi Says:

Reply to #7  
chayala Says:

They're core of a person is not based in race color or religion, its based on ethics, they're behavior is not accepting to anyone!

Chayala, perhaps you need a better grasp of English (for starts). 1) I believe you meant to say "The core of a person is not based on race, color or religion, it's based on ethics, their behavior is not acceptable to anyone!" 2) Ethics is defined as a system of moral principles, you and your society may have morals that do not accept homosexuality, but in many systems it is perfectly welcome.

35

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:41 PM frumboi Says:

Reply to #12  
chayala Says:

Ahavas yisroel follows ahavas hashem, which these men obviously don't have. Different is acceptable, chilul hashem is not. Hashem created man then woman, so they too can further create! Can 2 men create?no!can 2 woman create? NO! What they can do is what we call
LUST! Which is not different! ITS. A SIN!

You sound so full of love yourself that you should probably give us all lessons in how to love, Hashem style. Like for all of His creation, that He felt worthy putting in His world.

36

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:43 PM enlightened-yid Says:

The concept of some Gadol Hador who has so much power in Jewish life is dangerous. The gadols don't know how to deal with complex social challenges and seek all answers from ancient Halahic cookbooks. The result is that many people are psychologically and physically abused at all costs because of bad advice given to them by "gedolim" who in this case were forcing many men like these to undergo dangerous therapies that only did more psychological harm and pushed them away from Torah and God. It's time our community leaders accept science and modern understandings of society and stop playing doctor with people's lives.

37

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:52 PM gematria12 Says:

some of the comment here are disgusting, and against everything the torah stands for, besides for being outright wrong it is hateful and falls into sinas chinam, the torah is not against BEING gay, since it is not a choice to begin with, as for acting on it, that is an entire different discussion, stop hating innocent people that had no choice in being gay, and show some warmth and support and maybe it will help counteract some of your own sins....

38

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:54 PM UseYourHead Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

The Torah does NOT say that "gays are no good". It says that it is prohibited for a man to lie with another man. The Torah also prohibits lots of other things, such as telling a falsehood, gossiping, coveting another man's wife, being dishonest in business, paying a worker late, etc. etc. etc. - now look me in the face and tell me that people who violate these TORAH prohibitions are treated the same way that gays are.

The fact is, YOU have no answer to that.

39

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:56 PM UseYourHead Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

If the "frum community" was as concerned with financial honesty and scrupulousness in business dealings (also Torah commandments, mind you!) as it is with homosexuality, Moshiach would have arrived long ago.

40

 Nov 27, 2012 at 10:56 PM yidfrumdablock Says:

Chaim (Kevin) Levin its nice to see when you have a photo op you put on a yarmulka why don't you show your true colors and get on with your life stop making believe you're a Frum yid when you know you're far from it!

41

 Nov 27, 2012 at 11:00 PM DanielBarbaz Says:

We need to have compassion for ALL people and not make value judgments.

At the end of the day, Hashem will decide if a person has lived a good life. Does anyone believe that Hashem wants anyone to make nasty, insulting, condescending, or demeaning comments about other people?

42

 Nov 27, 2012 at 11:32 PM Anonymous, Too Says:

It's not that Gay people are no good, as people.

It's the performance of the homosexual act that is no good and forbidden, according to the Torah. Following the Torah is not bigotry.

From Sefer Birayshis: "A man shall leave his father and his mother and cleave to his wife, and they shall be as one flesh. . . Be fruitful and multiply."

From Sefer Vayikra: "If a man lies with a man, as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them."

43

 Nov 27, 2012 at 11:35 PM IMHOpinion Says:

Reply to #4  
Practice What You Preach Says:

Many in the frum community have a very hard time accepting anyone who's "different." That includes gays, Ethiopian Jews, kids with learning issues, people from different ethnic backgrounds, people who are single past a certain age, people with developmental challenges, etc., etc.

They will judge you. They will ostracize you. They will treat you shabbily. They will try to make you into carbon copies of themselves. Just because you're different. And it makes them very, very uncomfortable to accept the fact that YOU are YOU, and you are perfect just the way you are.

DO NOT LET THEM INTO YOUR HEAD! Never allow yourself to look at the world through THEIR eyes. Use your own lens to view others and yourself. Celebrate your differences. Teach THEM tolerance. Maybe even teach them acceptance. Ahavas Yisroel is something they preach. But do they practice it?

Know your priorities.
They aren't "different". They are Reshaim. They aren't acting against one of the worst Aveiros in the Torah. Hashem destroyed a whole town(Sedom) because of this sin.

Don't call yourself Orthodox Jews if you don't present Jews.

44

 Nov 27, 2012 at 11:35 PM RussianJew Says:

Reply to #9  
ohvei Says:

(reply to 4)Lets leave the "frum community" out of the picture, what about the torah? Do you know that in the days of the beis Hamikdosh, if someone had sex with a guy he has to be killed with "Skilah" . Maybe you think the torah is fanatic, not enough liberal.Then you could decide to leave the torah (or chose whatever you like from the torah) so then you're not believing in toras moshe then i understand you're point of view. but for someone who is a mamin in toras moshe i dont see any way that Gay could be Acceptable.

I'm ashamed that you call yourself a Frum Jew, I similarly to you might not support gay marriage, but I can sympathize with our Jewish brothers/sisters who are gay. It's said when one can say, but in times of Bais Hamikdosh!!! We don't leave in times of Beis Hamikdosh. Do you suggest that we should go to college campus Hillel or Jewish federation and kill every non shomer Shabbos person there? Because in times of Beis Hamikdosh they did that. I hope not... The Torah that I learned while I studied in Yeshiva taught Ahavas Israel and not to hate someone just because they are weak in one area or another. Thank G-d I don't have the changes that those poor guys have, but I have my own and the only way we can be a nation belev echad keish echod is if we learn to look past our differences and our brothers/sister short comings.

45

 Nov 27, 2012 at 11:44 PM RussianJew Says:

Reply to #12  
chayala Says:

Ahavas yisroel follows ahavas hashem, which these men obviously don't have. Different is acceptable, chilul hashem is not. Hashem created man then woman, so they too can further create! Can 2 men create?no!can 2 woman create? NO! What they can do is what we call
LUST! Which is not different! ITS. A SIN!

These man are trying, and no where in this article do I see that they are doing any inappropriate acts. They have urges that they went to a group for help to stop those urges. Instead they were mistreated and abused which shouldn't happen weather someone is attracted to the same sex, or is gay, black, white or yellow.

46

 Nov 27, 2012 at 11:59 PM Rachel W. Says:

Hey, people, chill! Having a propensity for being gay is not assur, it's succumbing to the temptations that is. If they sought help because they'd rather be straight, they should be commended for it, not ostracized. As for Jonah, we'll no doubt soon hear from people who were helped by the organization.

47

 Nov 28, 2012 at 12:02 AM raisy Says:

#10 There is no credible proof, scientific or otherwise, that there is a 'gay gene'. One cannot say they are 'born that way'. The Torah does not have a term for a 'gay' person, only for the act. And the act is clearly condemned. Since I believe the Torah is an expression of G-d's love and compassion, I believe that a homosexual act is destructive at a physical, spiritual and emotional level for the perpetrator and for the world.

Though the methods used for this particular therapy may be questionable, even harmful, there is much to be said about undergoing therapy for SSA. For those interested, there is an excellent article in aish.com called "David" about a young man recovering from SSA, his struggles and triumphs and journey towards a meaningful and authentic relationship with G-d.

48

 Nov 28, 2012 at 12:50 AM gawking Says:

Reply to #33  
esther Says:

c'mon,it's the torah's parameters and therefore should be all of ours as well.

but it isnt, that is a fact.

49

 Nov 28, 2012 at 12:51 AM seicheldik Says:

Reply to #16  
COMPASSion Says:

The Torah Hakdosha does not say "clear" that Gays are NO good. The Torah says a certain act between two men is no good. It does not say that homosexuality is a disease or an abnormality that can be cured. If anything, it's the opposite. The fact that it's listed just like a lot of other arayos shows that the Torah considers it a normal ta'avah, and one that should be withstood. No more, no less.

How much a person withstands his or her own taavos is between that person and Hashem. It is not for quack organizations to make money off the misery of those who are made to feel like sick people for having ta'avos that Hashem gave them but they harm nobody but themselves.

BY THE WAY i keep hearing that argument that if the torah forbade it it must be normal taiva. So.... Is having relations with an animal a normal taiva?!!!
It's the exact opposite: THE TORAH FORBADE this abnormal taiva.
Regarding the actual topic, unfortunately this taiva mainly stems from low self-esteem and these people need our compassion and help

50

 Nov 28, 2012 at 12:53 AM gawking Says:

Reply to #47  
raisy Says:

#10 There is no credible proof, scientific or otherwise, that there is a 'gay gene'. One cannot say they are 'born that way'. The Torah does not have a term for a 'gay' person, only for the act. And the act is clearly condemned. Since I believe the Torah is an expression of G-d's love and compassion, I believe that a homosexual act is destructive at a physical, spiritual and emotional level for the perpetrator and for the world.

Though the methods used for this particular therapy may be questionable, even harmful, there is much to be said about undergoing therapy for SSA. For those interested, there is an excellent article in aish.com called "David" about a young man recovering from SSA, his struggles and triumphs and journey towards a meaningful and authentic relationship with G-d.

Its you against every therapist and scientist, I will go with the experts and not care about your ill informed and uneducated postulations. The facts arent on your side, that is all.

51

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:01 AM RalphWaldoEmerson Says:

Reply to #8  
chayala Says:

They're not different, different is race, color, religion etc they're sick and BTW nobody is judging or looking at them funny, I don't give such people the time of the day

in one sentence you claimed both that they are "SICK" and that no one is judging them. you're ignorance is what's sad

52

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:04 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #20  
seicheldik Says:

i'm not an expert. But if you learn alot of torah. you'll get a cure!

yup, you're clearly not an expert

53

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:04 AM c Says:

The term toevah occurs over 100 times in the Torah. Why aren't people all worked up over every toevah. Also there are many instances that would require the death penalty. I ask the same question. Treat people with love and compassion and the world will be a better place.

54

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:07 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #46  
Rachel W. Says:

Hey, people, chill! Having a propensity for being gay is not assur, it's succumbing to the temptations that is. If they sought help because they'd rather be straight, they should be commended for it, not ostracized. As for Jonah, we'll no doubt soon hear from people who were helped by the organization.

you've just gone WAY over the head of your average blogger, but i agree with you nonetheless

55

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:09 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #47  
raisy Says:

#10 There is no credible proof, scientific or otherwise, that there is a 'gay gene'. One cannot say they are 'born that way'. The Torah does not have a term for a 'gay' person, only for the act. And the act is clearly condemned. Since I believe the Torah is an expression of G-d's love and compassion, I believe that a homosexual act is destructive at a physical, spiritual and emotional level for the perpetrator and for the world.

Though the methods used for this particular therapy may be questionable, even harmful, there is much to be said about undergoing therapy for SSA. For those interested, there is an excellent article in aish.com called "David" about a young man recovering from SSA, his struggles and triumphs and journey towards a meaningful and authentic relationship with G-d.

being ugly is hereditary and genetically untraceable so is a lack of intelligence as you have so perfectly shown

57

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:40 AM Anonymous Says:

I think we should sue the gays for hurricane sandy. They are causing so much suffering because of gay marriage. Bloomberg gave five million dollars to support gay marriage in other states right before sandy and not a dime for NYC victims. G-d is watching.

58

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:48 AM ohvei Says:

(Reply to 44)
I am not talking about people that didn't have chinuch and they don't know about Torah,they are Jewish and they are called "tinoikes shenishbee" regarding ahavas Yisruel ,you gota look into the gemura about "Beoisa masseh amchu"if someone is not beleiving in the torah I'm not so sure there is a mitsva of ahaves yisruel.
About the belev echoid,I don't want to have heart of someone eating "neveiles itriefes"
General my problem is if you have lust to other man that a challenge you have lust on something that is prohibited,so if you are a believer in toras moshe you gota deal with that,giving you're self a name I'm guy and with this label you're basically want to justify you're lustful prohibited act this is agains Torah

59

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:48 AM anonymous Says:

Reply to #25  
Anonymous Says:

what about an infertile woman, can she create? What about a sterile man, can he create? You are the one here with no ahavas yisroel or ahavas Hashem to think you are loftier than G-d Himself giving yourself permission to judge your fellow man.

I'm not judging I'm stating a fact when a couple can't create, its unfortunate and they get help from our wonderful organizations, who state WE HAVE HALACHIC GUIDELINES, and they provide a list of rabbonim, I happen to volunteer. For one of them and I have firsthandly witnessed the discomfort and the bisha of these couples. What should be done naturally in the privacy of there own homes, turns into group projects, and b"h has great success! But its still a man and a woman, I don't believe if Moshe and yanky want a child that these org will grow one for them!!! What they will do is suggest, that they bear children the torah way

60

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:57 AM chayala Says:

Reply to #34  
frumboi Says:

Chayala, perhaps you need a better grasp of English (for starts). 1) I believe you meant to say "The core of a person is not based on race, color or religion, it's based on ethics, their behavior is not acceptable to anyone!" 2) Ethics is defined as a system of moral principles, you and your society may have morals that do not accept homosexuality, but in many systems it is perfectly welcome.

BTW talk about English-speaking! Its not FOR STARTS its FOR STARTERS,! and for finish u just re-quoted me

61

 Nov 28, 2012 at 04:31 AM AWife Says:

As the wife of a man who was helped by JONAH, I wish that the world would realize that there are two sides to every story, & that personal perception plays a key role in how we view things. I'm not doubting the truth of Chaim Levin's account, nor the account of any man who feels that "conversion" therapy harmed him. I am only pointing out that for every man who empathizes with their claims, there is another man mourning the possible loss of such a critical resource of change for those who seek it & succeed at it. I wish our voices weren't silenced out of fear of "exposure". I eagerly await the day when we can all just live and let live, without needing to tear down anyone else's way of life. Am I endorsing acting out on homosexual inclinations? No. I am espousing that we should learn to not be so hateful of people who do, but to recognize that they have nisyonos in life, just like the rest of us. And I would hope that, in turn, men like my husband (& there are many of them, I've met them!) can be afforded the right they deserve: to be able to have organizations like JONAH to turn to- to aid them in abating homosexual attractions & achieving a fulfilling heterosexual relationship.

62

 Nov 28, 2012 at 06:39 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #10  
gawking Says:

inNY, your bigotry is only outshone by your ignorance of Torah. The torah does not say "gays are no good" at all, nowhere, not a single letter, word, or pasuk makes that claim, not the way you wrote it and not the concept you claimed. And being that gay people are born that way and you may very well have a son or daughter or cousin or friends who is or will be gay you may want to let go of your personal hatred and bigotry and learn that this world is much more nuanced that you can imagine. The man spent 18 months with JONAH trying to change because of hateful people like you and it didnt work, he tried to submit himself to live by your parameters, not his, and failed, and this is how you respond? I would apologize of I were you.

I suppose you and all the others here on VIN that give succor to these behamos will have the same response to practioners of incest, beastiity, necrophelia, etc. because that is where we are headed.I suppose you won't have a problem when your son's reader in grade school contains strories like " Moishe has 2 tatties"Because it won't be long before these lifestyles become acceptable. Th jury is still out on wheather this a legitimate illness or not. What IS certain Is that homosexuality is an isssur deoreisa, period, case closed .

63

 Nov 28, 2012 at 07:05 AM The-Macher Says:

Homosexuality is a disease. If people would only recognize it as such, there would be a real treatment for it rather than this quackery.

64

 Nov 28, 2012 at 07:31 AM SandmanNY Says:

Nowhere in Breishis do I see that HaBoreh created "Adam and Steve" or "Madam and Eve". We are being deceived by gay marketing groups. Don't fall for it. Next will be polygamy and then marriage to monkeys.

65

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:00 AM UseYourHead Says:

Reply to #43  
IMHOpinion Says:

Know your priorities.
They aren't "different". They are Reshaim. They aren't acting against one of the worst Aveiros in the Torah. Hashem destroyed a whole town(Sedom) because of this sin.

Don't call yourself Orthodox Jews if you don't present Jews.

Yes, and Avraham Avinu davened repeatedly to Hashem to save Sedom despite their sins!

Don't call yourself a descendant of Avraham if you don't love Jews.

66

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:03 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #19  
ayinglefunadorf Says:

So everyone who does on issur doayrayse should leave the Torah???? You will not have a minyan left in Lakewood,Willi,BP etc Steeling is OSUR for a start.

I don't have as much of a problem with steeling as I do with stealing
I do however have a problem with an ignoramous that can't spell and refuses to use a dictionary.

67

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:06 AM UseYourHead Says:

Reply to #49  
seicheldik Says:

BY THE WAY i keep hearing that argument that if the torah forbade it it must be normal taiva. So.... Is having relations with an animal a normal taiva?!!!
It's the exact opposite: THE TORAH FORBADE this abnormal taiva.
Regarding the actual topic, unfortunately this taiva mainly stems from low self-esteem and these people need our compassion and help

Hey chacham, the Torah forbids lots of different sexual relationships, including having relations with the sister of your wife, your neighbor's wife, etc. - so are these "abnormal" taivos as well? If so, there are lots of abnormal people out there.

68

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:41 AM Clear_Mind Says:

Reply to #47  
raisy Says:

#10 There is no credible proof, scientific or otherwise, that there is a 'gay gene'. One cannot say they are 'born that way'. The Torah does not have a term for a 'gay' person, only for the act. And the act is clearly condemned. Since I believe the Torah is an expression of G-d's love and compassion, I believe that a homosexual act is destructive at a physical, spiritual and emotional level for the perpetrator and for the world.

Though the methods used for this particular therapy may be questionable, even harmful, there is much to be said about undergoing therapy for SSA. For those interested, there is an excellent article in aish.com called "David" about a young man recovering from SSA, his struggles and triumphs and journey towards a meaningful and authentic relationship with G-d.

Raisy, your comment is the best, most articulate and logical based on facts. The rest are all emotional babblers with no logical support to their statements.
Good job, girl!

69

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:42 AM ModernLakewoodGuy Says:

Reply to #8  
chayala Says:

They're not different, different is race, color, religion etc they're sick and BTW nobody is judging or looking at them funny, I don't give such people the time of the day

So if gayness is a sickness and you are disgusted by these people and dont give them the time of day, do you treat cancer patients the same way?

70

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:44 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #9  
ohvei Says:

(reply to 4)Lets leave the "frum community" out of the picture, what about the torah? Do you know that in the days of the beis Hamikdosh, if someone had sex with a guy he has to be killed with "Skilah" . Maybe you think the torah is fanatic, not enough liberal.Then you could decide to leave the torah (or chose whatever you like from the torah) so then you're not believing in toras moshe then i understand you're point of view. but for someone who is a mamin in toras moshe i dont see any way that Gay could be Acceptable.

In the same torah you get stoned for disobeying your parents, breaking shabbos, or doing any number of things that people dont get stoned for anymore. If it were up to you, would you stone people for breaking shabbos and disobeying their parents?

71

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:45 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #12  
chayala Says:

Ahavas yisroel follows ahavas hashem, which these men obviously don't have. Different is acceptable, chilul hashem is not. Hashem created man then woman, so they too can further create! Can 2 men create?no!can 2 woman create? NO! What they can do is what we call
LUST! Which is not different! ITS. A SIN!

Since hashem created one man and one woman, you are okay with the fact that adams sons "slept" with their own mothers and sisters to continue the population?

72

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:55 AM raisy Says:

#61 I commend your support of your husband. Yes, we are commanded to love every jew. I agree with the writer who wrote that we are being sold out by the huge and powerful gay lobby who would have us believe that people who experience a propensity towards SSA--and I would warrant all of us do at times; we were created as sexual creatures--have no choice but to act upon it. The liberal/gay agenda arouses our compassion for those who must suffer in silence and encourages these men (and now women) to 'come out' proudly. The problem with this, is that this 'coming out' does not bring the happiness the
'gay' agendists would have us believe. The liberal media, and television shows do a great disservice to those suffering from SSA and to all of people by depicting the 'gay' lifestyle as normal.

I wrote previously, and those that disagree with me--I challenge you to bring proof--there is no proven 'gay' gene. Yes, there are those that will struggle with their desires--if they believe in G-d and His torah and want a relationship with him--but so do we all struggle with our individual challenges and temptations. I have compassion for all Jews, and all people, that struggle to transcen.

73

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:58 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #50  
gawking Says:

Its you against every therapist and scientist, I will go with the experts and not care about your ill informed and uneducated postulations. The facts arent on your side, that is all.

gawking, when you say 'every therapist and scientist' propagates that there is a 'gay gene' , you're either naive and believe everything coming out of the mouths of the gay agenda advocates, or you are knowingly lying and misleading the crowd, as is the way of the liberal agenda, to state made up facts and hope the crowd is as ignorant as they themselves are. EVERY therapist and scientist DOES NOT believe there is a 'gay gene'. As a matter of fact, it is only a small minority that does, but since these agenda driven 'scientists' are the ones that are being given the air time on public television to propagate their agenda most people are fooled into believing that this is somehow an exact proven science that everyone agrees with. But since we know that only a few coins in a pushka make A LOT of noise, it is not surprising that naive and uninformed folk like you believe them. This is aside from the fact the psychology is not an EXACT SCIENCE, not like 2+2=4, it is mostly he said she said, mostly based on theory.
So please, don't be an empty pushka, educate yourself instead, learn how to think for yourself.
Hatzlocha Rabah to you.

74

 Nov 28, 2012 at 09:03 AM Anonymous Says:

Were they forced into this? Did they pay for it and are not happy with the result so they want their money back? So why sue for 3 mill? They were embarassed? didnt Jonah make them sign a waiver and disclose they may be subject to humiliation , etc.? I just dont understand the lawsuit at all. More headline grabbing by activist gays and shyster attorneys. Give them back their money and let the consumer beware. If someone else wants to try it, let them. It has helped some.
(What is it about the gay mentality that they have to always fight and be in the news? They should suffer their condition quietly and leave the rest of the world alone.)

75

 Nov 28, 2012 at 09:09 AM seicheldik Says:

Reply to #67  
UseYourHead Says:

Hey chacham, the Torah forbids lots of different sexual relationships, including having relations with the sister of your wife, your neighbor's wife, etc. - so are these "abnormal" taivos as well? If so, there are lots of abnormal people out there.

didn't say all issurim are abnormal. just said that being in the torah doesn' prove that it IS normal

76

 Nov 28, 2012 at 10:02 AM Nussy Finster Says:

nobody forced them to take the therapy

77

 Nov 28, 2012 at 10:25 AM PashutehYid Says:

Reply to #43  
IMHOpinion Says:

Know your priorities.
They aren't "different". They are Reshaim. They aren't acting against one of the worst Aveiros in the Torah. Hashem destroyed a whole town(Sedom) because of this sin.

Don't call yourself Orthodox Jews if you don't present Jews.

But Rashi says Sedom was destroyed because they killed a little girl who tried to perform hachnasas orchim. Do you seriously believe G-d would destroy a city which treated everybody respectfully and kindly?

78

 Nov 28, 2012 at 10:29 AM Truth Says:

Reply to #74  
Anonymous Says:

Were they forced into this? Did they pay for it and are not happy with the result so they want their money back? So why sue for 3 mill? They were embarassed? didnt Jonah make them sign a waiver and disclose they may be subject to humiliation , etc.? I just dont understand the lawsuit at all. More headline grabbing by activist gays and shyster attorneys. Give them back their money and let the consumer beware. If someone else wants to try it, let them. It has helped some.
(What is it about the gay mentality that they have to always fight and be in the news? They should suffer their condition quietly and leave the rest of the world alone.)

"What is it about the gay mentality that they have to always fight and be in the news? They should suffer their condition quietly and leave the rest of the world alone."

This is the crux of it. The Gays have learned that in American society -it's the squeaky wheel that gets the grease. Why come out of the closet? Simple. They knew if they make a lot of noise in this country - it would elevate their social status. Unfortunately most Americans are too weak to stand up to these militants and that's why we now have legal Gay marriage in parts of the country. This is something that almost noone even dreamed about 20 years ago. The posters here spouting "Love every Jew bit" are actually furthering the Gay agenda, which is Rishous! This is how they thrive by having people sympathize with them. Actually it's States like California that have No mercy on them because if s/o is like this & has such a Taavah there is no choice but to act it out. They are giving them no choice to live in the next world. It's actually Orgs. like Jonah that want them to be able to live in the next world!

79

 Nov 28, 2012 at 10:39 AM Clear_Mind Says:

Reply to #66  
Anonymous Says:

I don't have as much of a problem with steeling as I do with stealing
I do however have a problem with an ignoramous that can't spell and refuses to use a dictionary.

Your attack on someone knowledge of the English language is very petty, it underscores your otherwise empty head, devoid of any substance other than knowing how to spell a few English words. Typical liberal, empty head trying to pass for someone with intellect.

80

 Nov 28, 2012 at 10:40 AM BROOKLYN Says:

in the time of the beis hamikdash when there was a bes-din hagudal of 70 dayunim, these 4 ppl wouldve been hung in middle of the street for being over an isur of "mishkav zuchar"
this is the worst of the aroyis, and they have come now to such a low that they have no problem going out to cameras grab attention and ofcourse ultimatley file a lawsuit to get rich off these isurim
shame on them!!

81

 Nov 28, 2012 at 11:16 AM frumboi Says:

Reply to #47  
raisy Says:

#10 There is no credible proof, scientific or otherwise, that there is a 'gay gene'. One cannot say they are 'born that way'. The Torah does not have a term for a 'gay' person, only for the act. And the act is clearly condemned. Since I believe the Torah is an expression of G-d's love and compassion, I believe that a homosexual act is destructive at a physical, spiritual and emotional level for the perpetrator and for the world.

Though the methods used for this particular therapy may be questionable, even harmful, there is much to be said about undergoing therapy for SSA. For those interested, there is an excellent article in aish.com called "David" about a young man recovering from SSA, his struggles and triumphs and journey towards a meaningful and authentic relationship with G-d.

The Torah has no term for gay people, true. Neither does the Torah have a name for straight people. Do they not exist?
Or perhaps the Torah doesn't differentiate people by their sexuality, as we are all just homos, homo sapiens. Love a little, that's the message I see in the Torah you and you cohorts seem to forget. "Zeh klall gadol batorah" was said about loving, not against homosexuality.

82

 Nov 28, 2012 at 11:24 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #64  
SandmanNY Says:

Nowhere in Breishis do I see that HaBoreh created "Adam and Steve" or "Madam and Eve". We are being deceived by gay marketing groups. Don't fall for it. Next will be polygamy and then marriage to monkeys.

Polygamy is an issue too now? The Torah endorses that one... What's your issue?

83

 Nov 28, 2012 at 11:37 AM JackM2012 Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

With all due respect, why are you assuming what they are doing behind close doors, but not assume that straight frum people are not keeping Taharat Hamishpacha. I think there is a double standard. There is no issur for a guy to be attracted to another guy. There is an issur in harassing them and stigmatizing them which often leads to suicide.

The fact that they were willing to go for this treatment shows that they didn't want to be born this way. I think they suffer enough and we do not need to add to there suffering. What would you suppose for them to do. Do you think it is fair to the girl that they marry if they try to ignore it? Would you want your daughter marrying someone that is gay and hiding it? I know I wouldn't want that to happen to my daughter.

You should think before putting some one down for something they didn't choose.

84

 Nov 28, 2012 at 11:47 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #12  
chayala Says:

Ahavas yisroel follows ahavas hashem, which these men obviously don't have. Different is acceptable, chilul hashem is not. Hashem created man then woman, so they too can further create! Can 2 men create?no!can 2 woman create? NO! What they can do is what we call
LUST! Which is not different! ITS. A SIN!

Is a man or woman evil if they are born without the ability to have children. I know a couple that are married for over 15 years and tried every treatment out there and cant have kids. Are they evil? The Torah says they cant have sex. I don't see anywhere in the article where is says that they are having sex.

85

 Nov 28, 2012 at 11:49 AM My Take Says:

Being gay is an abomination. The Torah says so, so it's true. However, these men were trying to get out of that abominable lifestyle, so why is everyone condemning them? The problem is they went to a fraudulent place for help. Perhaps seeing a Torah oriented psychologist would have been a better venue or trying a holistic approach such as EFT could have helped.

86

 Nov 28, 2012 at 11:49 AM cent_cent Says:

This is an extremely complex topic with numerous different forces acting on each other. First off, some people have an attraction to men. This is the same as any other ta'veh. Some people like to steal, others like to eat non-kosher. I don't think this can be argued. However, the Torah clearly states that acting upon these feelings is completely assur. Not only that it is called an abomination. (unlike almost any other issurim). The Torah views these actions extremely negatively. Therefore, if someone has these urges, they must work on themselves to try to counteract these feelings. Same way as someone who is a drug addict goes to rehab, or a food addict can go to various organizations for help (OA, weight watchers) someone with this problem must try to help themselves. I don't know JONAH or their methods, but conversion therapy in general, contrary to the mainstream view, has been proven to work. If you read about the work of Masters and Johnson you will see that it can be successful. (to the tune of 71.6% success rate in six weeks). Obviously now (despite the fact that their other work is all accepted) this study has been questioned and is no longer considered valid. I wonder why

87

 Nov 28, 2012 at 12:24 PM esther Says:

Reply to #51  
RalphWaldoEmerson Says:

in one sentence you claimed both that they are "SICK" and that no one is judging them. you're ignorance is what's sad

fyi ,until a relatively short time ago,homosexuality was considered a mental illness. i believe it ws only in the 70's that the american psychiatric association declared it kosher so to say.

88

 Nov 28, 2012 at 12:27 PM what Says:

Reply to #65  
UseYourHead Says:

Yes, and Avraham Avinu davened repeatedly to Hashem to save Sedom despite their sins!

Don't call yourself a descendant of Avraham if you don't love Jews.

Do YOU daven "repeatedly" for your gay attitudes or gay friends?

89

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:00 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

actually, only the action is assur. Having gay feelings, without acting upon them, is not assur at all.

90

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:03 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #86  
cent_cent Says:

This is an extremely complex topic with numerous different forces acting on each other. First off, some people have an attraction to men. This is the same as any other ta'veh. Some people like to steal, others like to eat non-kosher. I don't think this can be argued. However, the Torah clearly states that acting upon these feelings is completely assur. Not only that it is called an abomination. (unlike almost any other issurim). The Torah views these actions extremely negatively. Therefore, if someone has these urges, they must work on themselves to try to counteract these feelings. Same way as someone who is a drug addict goes to rehab, or a food addict can go to various organizations for help (OA, weight watchers) someone with this problem must try to help themselves. I don't know JONAH or their methods, but conversion therapy in general, contrary to the mainstream view, has been proven to work. If you read about the work of Masters and Johnson you will see that it can be successful. (to the tune of 71.6% success rate in six weeks). Obviously now (despite the fact that their other work is all accepted) this study has been questioned and is no longer considered valid. I wonder why

They only have to work on themselves to stop the action from occurring. So long as they never do the action, they are in no way "an abomination" for feeling that way.
Which Masters and Johnson article are you referring to? I have read a lot on the subject (professional reasons) and this is one article I have not heard of.
Most "conversion therapy" just force the participants to sublimate their true feelings. They still leave the place with the same feelings but are afraid to show it and are forced to feel conflicted, not knowing what to do. They feel one way but have been told they are crazy for those feelings.
So long as the action does not happen they are doing nothing assur.

91

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:47 PM COMPASSion Says:

Reply to #74  
Anonymous Says:

Were they forced into this? Did they pay for it and are not happy with the result so they want their money back? So why sue for 3 mill? They were embarassed? didnt Jonah make them sign a waiver and disclose they may be subject to humiliation , etc.? I just dont understand the lawsuit at all. More headline grabbing by activist gays and shyster attorneys. Give them back their money and let the consumer beware. If someone else wants to try it, let them. It has helped some.
(What is it about the gay mentality that they have to always fight and be in the news? They should suffer their condition quietly and leave the rest of the world alone.)

Why do the Jews always have to fight and be in the news every time some anti-semite opens his mouth? Why can't we just suffer our condition quietly and leave the rest of the world alone?

If you'll make the argument that Chaim Levin "doesn't have to be gay", it's right back at you. Y'know, you don't have to be Jewish. You could always convert to Catholicism and the Church will be more than happy to protect you when the next wave of homicidal anti-semites try to kill you.

92

 Nov 28, 2012 at 01:55 PM COMPASSion Says:

Reply to #49  
seicheldik Says:

BY THE WAY i keep hearing that argument that if the torah forbade it it must be normal taiva. So.... Is having relations with an animal a normal taiva?!!!
It's the exact opposite: THE TORAH FORBADE this abnormal taiva.
Regarding the actual topic, unfortunately this taiva mainly stems from low self-esteem and these people need our compassion and help

When you do extensive study in human sexuality you may be qualified to judge taivas on whether they are "normal" or not.

So far the evidence suggests that to some extent sexual desires can be socially influenced or conditioned, but to a large extent they are inborn or just there since childhood. Not all of these taivas are moral - bestiality or pedophilia for example, are immoral by anyone's standards as they animal or child cannot consent. However, the fact that a taiva is unusual or immoral does not make the person "sick" if they are otherwise normal. That's EXACTLY WHY the Torah Hakdoshah in its Infinite Wisdom forbade acts like bestiality, homosexuality, and to some extent pedophilia. So we should remain a pure people, our desires curbed in spite of changing times or social conventions. The gemara mentions plenty of bizarre sexual practices in pagan religions where these things were "normal", as a case in point.

The Torah says nothing about the normalcy or abnormalcy of any taiva. It is a judgment call you and others are making by CHRISTIAN influence. And by the way, they consider marriage between an uncle and niece, or even cousins, incest.

93

 Nov 28, 2012 at 02:58 PM chancyfirt Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

Great answer!!!! 100% on the point. all this so called modern jews, they are not modern at all! they are just as much a jew as bloomberg is.

94

 Nov 28, 2012 at 03:14 PM cent_cent Says:

Reply to #90  
Anonymous Says:

They only have to work on themselves to stop the action from occurring. So long as they never do the action, they are in no way "an abomination" for feeling that way.
Which Masters and Johnson article are you referring to? I have read a lot on the subject (professional reasons) and this is one article I have not heard of.
Most "conversion therapy" just force the participants to sublimate their true feelings. They still leave the place with the same feelings but are afraid to show it and are forced to feel conflicted, not knowing what to do. They feel one way but have been told they are crazy for those feelings.
So long as the action does not happen they are doing nothing assur.

I dont know what the rules are regarding links in comments but this should help you find it. First is a book called Homosexuality in Perspective. ISBN 0-553-20809-8
Second is an article in the American Journal of Psychiatry 141 called "The Masters and Johnson treatment program for dissatisfied homosexual men". A google search for this should bring it up.
Also, I agree that it is not an abomination if you have those feelings. However, it would be exceedingly difficult to control those feelings without doing anything about the feelings themselves. It would be like a kleptomaniac working in a retail store.

95

 Nov 28, 2012 at 02:23 PM esther Says:

Reply to #83  
JackM2012 Says:

With all due respect, why are you assuming what they are doing behind close doors, but not assume that straight frum people are not keeping Taharat Hamishpacha. I think there is a double standard. There is no issur for a guy to be attracted to another guy. There is an issur in harassing them and stigmatizing them which often leads to suicide.

The fact that they were willing to go for this treatment shows that they didn't want to be born this way. I think they suffer enough and we do not need to add to there suffering. What would you suppose for them to do. Do you think it is fair to the girl that they marry if they try to ignore it? Would you want your daughter marrying someone that is gay and hiding it? I know I wouldn't want that to happen to my daughter.

You should think before putting some one down for something they didn't choose.

there's no assumption here.these guys felt the need to call a news conference to publicize their lifestyle.

96

 Nov 28, 2012 at 03:59 PM PashutehYid Says:

Reply to #80  
BROOKLYN Says:

in the time of the beis hamikdash when there was a bes-din hagudal of 70 dayunim, these 4 ppl wouldve been hung in middle of the street for being over an isur of "mishkav zuchar"
this is the worst of the aroyis, and they have come now to such a low that they have no problem going out to cameras grab attention and ofcourse ultimatley file a lawsuit to get rich off these isurim
shame on them!!

Impossible. The Mishna in Makos says that any beis din that executed more than one person in 7 years was a murderers beis din. According to another Tanna even once in 70 years!

97

 Nov 28, 2012 at 04:48 PM JackM2012 Says:

Reply to #95  
esther Says:

there's no assumption here.these guys felt the need to call a news conference to publicize their lifestyle.

They are not publicizing there life style. They are publicizing the harm caused to them and others by JONAH.

98

 Nov 28, 2012 at 04:54 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #59  
anonymous Says:

I'm not judging I'm stating a fact when a couple can't create, its unfortunate and they get help from our wonderful organizations, who state WE HAVE HALACHIC GUIDELINES, and they provide a list of rabbonim, I happen to volunteer. For one of them and I have firsthandly witnessed the discomfort and the bisha of these couples. What should be done naturally in the privacy of there own homes, turns into group projects, and b"h has great success! But its still a man and a woman, I don't believe if Moshe and yanky want a child that these org will grow one for them!!! What they will do is suggest, that they bear children the torah way

You are jumping from having SSA to settling down and trying to become a family? That is ridiculous. The point is that a man has a mitzva for pru urivu and if he is sterile or if he has SSA, BOTH can not fulfill the mitzva and both feel that was a fact bestowed upon them by G-d. Neither should be judged and you are in fact judging the one with SSA, that he now will not be fulfilling the mitzva of "creating". Well neither is the sterile man. And ps, as a nurse I can tell you that the definition of sterile (not low sperm count) is one who can never, because there is no treatment, have children.

This is not about a moshe and a yanky. This is only about individuals who were misled by an organization for no real reason. It only hurt them further. You want to ruin an innocent woman's life because an organization told a gay boy that if he married her it would make him straight all of a sudden? I know men who married under false pretenses and now the ex wife and children suffer through no fault of their own when years later that man realizes he is living a lie, is terribly depressed and could not in fact marry the gay away. You need to educate yourself.

99

 Nov 28, 2012 at 05:00 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #61  
AWife Says:

As the wife of a man who was helped by JONAH, I wish that the world would realize that there are two sides to every story, & that personal perception plays a key role in how we view things. I'm not doubting the truth of Chaim Levin's account, nor the account of any man who feels that "conversion" therapy harmed him. I am only pointing out that for every man who empathizes with their claims, there is another man mourning the possible loss of such a critical resource of change for those who seek it & succeed at it. I wish our voices weren't silenced out of fear of "exposure". I eagerly await the day when we can all just live and let live, without needing to tear down anyone else's way of life. Am I endorsing acting out on homosexual inclinations? No. I am espousing that we should learn to not be so hateful of people who do, but to recognize that they have nisyonos in life, just like the rest of us. And I would hope that, in turn, men like my husband (& there are many of them, I've met them!) can be afforded the right they deserve: to be able to have organizations like JONAH to turn to- to aid them in abating homosexual attractions & achieving a fulfilling heterosexual relationship.

I hope your story is in fact the exception to the rule and you are happy forever, but I know websites by frum gay men who are/were married that have grown a following of frum gay men who are currently married and terribly struggling and their wives have no idea. Some of them are actually busy on the side and some of them do not want to act on it but feel terribly depressed in their marriages. Jonah is not run by licensed therapists. They have no board or licensing organization to answer to and that is already a dangerous environment to put vulnerable into. If people want to sort out some SSA feelings they should seek council from licensed therapists, not a wayward, unconventional organization.

100

 Nov 28, 2012 at 05:39 PM CollegeYid Says:

@Raisy is 100% correct, science is forever "evolving" to catch up to what the Torah already laid out. Science "facts" change regularly, and acutely (for example 1912 smoking is healthy, 2012 smoking will kill you) The science you are referring to is socially prejudice, educate yourself. Only one this is emes in this world. G-d!

101

 Nov 28, 2012 at 05:44 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

The Torah doesn't say "Gays are no good". What it does say is that gay behavior is not allowed.

102

 Nov 28, 2012 at 07:44 PM Anonymous Says:

My heart goes out to these people who, in their desperation to fit into the heterosexist paradigm of orthodoxy, subjected themselves to the awful abuse of a charlatan. Who knows why G-d makes some people gay? Everyone has his or her metaphorical "cross to bear," that being said, there is no room in Judaism for visceral hatred of our fellow Jew. These people, like many others, with many different issues are struggling. It is our obligation to give our bretheren support and encouragement to live a Torah life to the extent they are able/willing. There is no room for judgement, G-d will judge, not us. In addition, some specific sexual acts are d'oriata ussur, not thoughts, feelings or "orientations," and unless you plan on specifically asking people what they do in their bedroom, give them the benefit of the doubt that they are halachically observant Jews.

103

 Nov 28, 2012 at 07:52 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #26  
Y-Love Says:

Bli ayin hara! 12 comments, 75% positive so far and pro-inclusion of everyone in k'lal Yisra'el. baruch Hashem!

these 3 jews (yisroail shechatu yisroail) should be included in klal yisroail with all the other poshie yisroail after we say al daas hamkom.

104

 Nov 28, 2012 at 07:56 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #10  
gawking Says:

inNY, your bigotry is only outshone by your ignorance of Torah. The torah does not say "gays are no good" at all, nowhere, not a single letter, word, or pasuk makes that claim, not the way you wrote it and not the concept you claimed. And being that gay people are born that way and you may very well have a son or daughter or cousin or friends who is or will be gay you may want to let go of your personal hatred and bigotry and learn that this world is much more nuanced that you can imagine. The man spent 18 months with JONAH trying to change because of hateful people like you and it didnt work, he tried to submit himself to live by your parameters, not his, and failed, and this is how you respond? I would apologize of I were you.

It's still an avairah and one that's one hundred percent Midaraisa. At the same time it's not our job to judge. It's gods job to judge.

105

 Nov 28, 2012 at 08:32 PM Rudolf Says:

Reply to #89  
Anonymous Says:

actually, only the action is assur. Having gay feelings, without acting upon them, is not assur at all.

Sure it is!!. "V'Loh susooru achray livavchem" means a person should not lust an ISSOOR ....... EVEN in his mind! Which means a person is not allowed to lust a prohibition even by only thinking about it. Now it may not always be possible to not think about things but as it says in Miseelas Yishrim "as soon as one starts thinking about wrong things he should quickly delve into learning and thinking about Torah.

106

 Nov 29, 2012 at 01:55 AM AWife Says:

Reply to #99  
Anonymous Says:

I hope your story is in fact the exception to the rule and you are happy forever, but I know websites by frum gay men who are/were married that have grown a following of frum gay men who are currently married and terribly struggling and their wives have no idea. Some of them are actually busy on the side and some of them do not want to act on it but feel terribly depressed in their marriages. Jonah is not run by licensed therapists. They have no board or licensing organization to answer to and that is already a dangerous environment to put vulnerable into. If people want to sort out some SSA feelings they should seek council from licensed therapists, not a wayward, unconventional organization.

While what you are saying may be true about some of the people who work under the auspices of JONAH, that they are not yet licensed therapists, I think that if we would call a spade a spade, what is going on here is really not just an insular allegation against JONAH. This is a move to have "reparative" therapy outlawed in New Jersey and other states to follow, if the prosecution has its way. And that is the possible loss that we mourn. Because every person with SSA has a right to try to attempt to achieve fullfilment in a heterosexual lifestyle when those SSA inclinations are at odds with his or her personal, moral, or religious values.
As far as my happiness and security within my own marriage, I thank you very much for your well wishes. I wish you only goodness in all of your endeavors as well. I too know of many men with SSA who are not happy in their marriages, who may be fooling around on the side, and who have caused much pain to their wives. The difference between you and I (it would appear based on your sentiments) is that I know as well of many men who, on the flipside of the spectrum, live very happy lives with their wives and share a deep, profound connectedness to one another. Such people do exist, my husband and I are not the exception to the rule, and all I ask is for similar people in the future to be allowed to continue to exist with the help of therapies and weekends geared toward that cause.

107

 Nov 29, 2012 at 02:36 AM menachemwh Says:

i think we should all take a step back. We live in a world where the gay scne is so prevalent that it triggers a response perhaps where none may have been years or centuries ago. Yes the torah assurs the act of homosexuality and indeed it is a toeivah. I belive our job is to love the homosexal as any other jew as we do any other individual who does not observe a halacha. Let the KBHU deal with the individual with his rachamim or midas hadin a she chooses. We must nly deal with rachamim in our lives.

108

 Dec 02, 2012 at 04:04 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #102  
Anonymous Says:

My heart goes out to these people who, in their desperation to fit into the heterosexist paradigm of orthodoxy, subjected themselves to the awful abuse of a charlatan. Who knows why G-d makes some people gay? Everyone has his or her metaphorical "cross to bear," that being said, there is no room in Judaism for visceral hatred of our fellow Jew. These people, like many others, with many different issues are struggling. It is our obligation to give our bretheren support and encouragement to live a Torah life to the extent they are able/willing. There is no room for judgement, G-d will judge, not us. In addition, some specific sexual acts are d'oriata ussur, not thoughts, feelings or "orientations," and unless you plan on specifically asking people what they do in their bedroom, give them the benefit of the doubt that they are halachically observant Jews.

Amen.

109

 Dec 09, 2012 at 02:23 AM NeshamaAchas613 Says:

Reply to #5  
inNY Says:

With all due respect, it's not the community that has an issue with accepting them, it's the Torah Hakdosha that says clear Gays are NO good.. so al these gays who keep on complain, become a GOY and do what u like, but our Torah says clearly Gay is an Isur Deoraias..

The fact is the Jewish gay community has no answer to that..

I 100 percent agree. While Jonah seems to not have been legit that does not change the fact that this situation can be overcome if these men really want to. They are letting liberal non Torah ideas get in the way of reality.

110

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