from Political News
According to GLAAD's reference guide, "Anti-gay activists have argued for years that sexual orientation is a choice and changeable--but only for lesbians and gay men, not heterosexuals. They claim homosexuality is a form of mental illness or an emotional disorder that can be 'cured' through psychological or religious intervention." (page 26)
The reference guide states that the American Psychiatric Association has condemned the treatment of homosexuality, saying that the potential risks of reparative therapy are great, including "depression, anxiety and self-destructive behavior."
The guide targets the study by Dr. Robert Spitzer of 200 ex-gays and observes: "Many in the scientific community have dismissed Spitzer's study because of its serious methodological flaws, among them: Spitzer recruited most of his subjects through two anti-gay activist groups: Exodus and the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH)." (page 26)
By implication, the reference guide suggests that any belief that homosexuals can change is illegitimate, dangerous, and "anti-gay" and that only a pro-gay viewpoint should be presented in news stories. The guide notes: "When reporting on scientific opinions or research on sexual orientation/gender identity issues, please solicit information and opinions from qualified experts in the appropriate scientific discipline." It includes a list of pro-gay or gay organizations to use as sources for news stories. (pages 29-32)
The GLAAD reference guide also suggests to journalists how they should handle reporting on individuals who consider themselves to be transgendered. The guide says: "A person who identifies as a certain gender, whether or not they have taken hormones or had surgery, should be referred to using the pronouns appropriate for that gender .... Note: It is never appropriate to put quotation marks around either a transgender person's chosen name or the pronoun that reflects his or her gender identity." (page 7) The report also urges journalists to avoid using the term "hermaphrodite" to describe someone with ambiguous genitalia. The term "intersexed" is to be used. (page 6)