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    Watching Scotty grow Fixing Scotty and good

    Joe Stark, father of Zach of Love in Action fame, has spoken to the press (or at least CBN):

    The father of a gay teenager who wrote in a Web log that he was being sent against his will to a camp run by a group called “Love in Action International” to “cure” him of his homosexuality is defending his actions.

    In an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network Joe Stark says he did the right thing when he sent his 16 year old son Zach to the camp near Memphis, Tennessee.

    “We felt very good about Zach coming here because… to let him see for himself the destructive lifestyle, what he has to face in the future, and to give him some options that society doesn’t give him today,” Stark told CBN. “Knowing that your son… statistics say that by the age of 30 he could either have AIDS or be dead.”

    Stark also said that he did nothing wrong in sending the teen to the camp against his will.

    “But until he turns 18 and he’s an adult in the state of Tennessee, I’m responsible for him. And I’m going to see to it that he has all options available to him.”

    Stark told CBN that when Zack is an adult he can make his own life choices.

    Fair enough on that last part. I won’t pretend to like it one bit, but we can’t call in CFS for every parenting decision some of us don’t like.

    At the same time, anti-gays, can you please stop yanking statistics out of your asses? Of course a gay guy could be dead by 30. Anyone could be dead by 30, from a variety of diseases and misadventures. I’m trying to think of gay bloggers I read–just bloggers–who aren’t over 30, and I can’t dredge up anyone but Law Dork. And even he may have turned 30 when I wasn’t looking. Let alone that most of my friends are over 30, in America as well as here. By all means, rail against promiscuity and the attendant physical and psychological costs. But don’t insult people’s intelligence to score cheap points.

    Of course, Stark sounds like a PFLAG chapter chairman compared to this miscreant:

    Ronnie Paris Jr. went on trial for his own life this week in a Tampa courtroom. The toddler’s mother, Nysheerah Paris, testified that her husband thought the boy might be gay and would force him to box.

    Nysheerah Paris told the court that Paris would make the boy fight with him, slapping the child in the head until he cried or wet himself. She said that on one occasion Paris slammed the child against a wall because he was vomiting.

    The court was told there had been a history of abuse by Paris. Prosecutor Jalal Harb said that in 2002, the Florida Department of Children & Families placed the child in protective custody after he had been admitted to the hospital several times for vomiting.

    He was returned to his parents Dec. 14. A month later he went into a coma and was rushed to hospital. Six days later he was removed from life support and died. An autopsy showed there was swelling on both sides of his brain.

    Who knows whether the child had a predisposition toward homosexuality or was already gay? Gay, straight, or whatever, he won’t have a chance to blossom into it, thanks to Dad.

    Added later: Mike at Ex-Gay Watch has commented. He notes a few interesting things. One is that CBN’s report cagily excises part of Zach’s blog entry. The other is that, of course, this is not about “see[ing] to it that he has all options available to him” (Zach’s father’s words). A program that attempts to erase your existing expressions of self and replace them with different ones is shoving you down one path, not showing you options. As Mike says on a different topic, I wonder whether he’s mouthing phrases he was told by Love in Action people to use or he just can’t bring himself to articulate, in direct terms, what he’s actually signed his own son up for.

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