The California Legislature has proposed banning the sale of books written by ex-gay people and Christians who seek to help others who want to restrain or control their sexuality. Bill AB 2943 would ban the sale of goods and services that encourage one to change his or her sexual orientation or gender expression. That’s right, the left is banning books! (Don’t hold your breath waiting for the American Library Association to kick up a fuss, though.) National Review reported the details:
First, the bill by its own terms applies to very broad categories of services and goods. Here’s the key enabling language:
1770. (a) The following unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices undertaken by any person in a transaction intended to result or that results in the sale or lease of goods or services to any consumer are unlawful:
Second, a book (along with other written materials, like pamphlets or workbooks) fits within the very, very broad definition of a goods:
tangible chattels bought or leased for use primarily for personal, family, or household purposes, including certificates or coupons exchangeable for these goods, and including goods that, at the time of the sale or subsequently, are to be so affixed to real property as to become a part of real property, whether or not they are severable from the real property.
Basically, if you can buy it and move it (in other words, it’s not real estate), then it’s a good. Moreover, under the statute, “services” can include “services furnished in connection with the sale or repair of goods.” Booksellers provide “services.”
Something similar passed in Illinois, but the legislature limited it to banning minors from receiving therapy to change their sexual orientation (even if the minor wanted it). But even the Illinois Democrats weren’t crazy enough to try and ban adults from buying the books or therapy they want. Not only will adults in California not be allowed to purchase the books of their choice (if this monstrosity passes the Senate), but priests will not be able to council LGBT people to be celibate even if they seek it out — because there is no exemption for religious institutions. How far they will go to stop it (jail, fines, loss of tax-exempt status, towering piles of books on fire) is yet to be seen. The government in California has declared war on the freedom of religion and speech. California legislators aren’t worried about it though since they just decided to label ideas they don’t like “fraud” and ban them under consumer protection laws. Here’s Al Muratsuchi lecturing us all on why banning religious philosophy and actual books isn’t really an infringement of free speech. You just need to “evolve,” you bigot.
If the basis for being able to ban a book is fraud, shouldn’t that automatically put Kitty Kelley and every other “unauthorized biographer” completely out of business? It is a shocking attempt to silence the voices of those who want to tell their stories about overcoming what to them was a result of years of abuse and struggle. Ex-gays have a right to tell their stories, whether you believe them or not. It’s interesting that the same people who believe Bruce can identify as Caitlyn want to make it illegal for Luis Javier Ramirez to identify as straight. Ramirez is taking part in a protest against this bill and others like it on May 5th in Washington, D.C.
A survivor of the Pulse gay nightclub shooting and a speaker at the event, Ramirez testifies about liberation from homosexuality through Jesus, who “didn’t just change my life, but exchanged my life for His.” Freedom March organizers want to know why Californians want to silence their choice to share their stories. Event founder Jeffrey McCall states, “Everyone in this country gets to speak their ideals and beliefs freely, so why can’t we tell our stories?”
“This is an extremely important and ground-breaking moment, as the LGBTQ community is clamping down to silence the testimonies of people who have come out of those lifestyles to follow Jesus Christ,” says Elizabeth Johnston, The Activist Mommy, who will speak at the event. “Their stories give us hope that freedom is possible in a world awash with gender confusion and sexual addiction!”
If the California Senate passes AB 2943, Californians will no longer be able to share personal stories of hope like the ones here.