Former exgay Love In Action participant Peterson Toscano has been thinking about appropriate and inappropriate tactics toward the Tennessee exgay inpatient therapeutic facility, Love In Action:
In June I learned some very powerful lessons in Memphis from watching the QAC in action.
Morgan, Cale, Suzie, Alex and the others strove to “speak truth to power” without hurting anyone, especially Zach and the other LIA/R victims/participants. They also made it clear from the beginning that their intentions were never to shut down LIA, rather to speak out against an injustice that was being done to young people.
I remember when a cameraman from ABC wanted footage of Zach leaving the LIA facility. He badgered the protesters who stood in the line as he attempted to find out what Zach’s family car looked like and repeatedly asked about Zach’s last name (this was before Joe Stark outed his family on CBN).
The QAC refused to budge. They did not in anyway wish to hurt or exploit Zach and the other participants.
Toscano notes that the battle over LIA is now a legal one — and what’s needed, perhaps, is not ragtag angry demonstrations that might scare or exploit the patients at LIA and provide fodder for antigay, anti-tolerance activists. Rather, what’s needed is for Tennessee to uphold its standards for quality and safety of inpatient mental-health facilities against a lawsuit by religious rightists who are fleeing accountability and integrity under the law.
In order for Tennessee to uphold quality mental health care, former exgays need to become vocal and assist Tennessee in speaking truth to power.