As reported here a few days ago, the National Association for the Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) recently posted an interview between reparative therapist Joseph Nicolosi and ex-gay activist Michael Glatze. The latter’s inflammatory comments of late are severely at odds with the image portrayed while talking with Nicolosi, who promoted an obviously troubled man as a great example “to young people who are struggling.” Among other things, Glatze claimed bullying should be allowed as a growth experience.
Apparently, NARTH’s promotion of Glatze didn’t sit well with Exodus president Alan Chambers, who is to speak at the annual NARTH conference tomorrow. In a comment on Warren Throckmorton’s blog today, Chambers said:
I am grateful to NARTH for taking such a stand. I have learned the hard lesson more than once that not taking such a stand immediately is a mistake.
This morning when I saw the interview on their site I knew I couldn’t speak at NARTH tomorrow if it remained. I never had to make such a choice—they removed it when I told them of the comments Glatze had made.
I am speaking at NARTH tomorrow and amending my normal talk to include a portion on bullying. Thanks, Warren, for hammering this stuff home. The stories of these poor, sweet, beautiful kids have broken my heart.
Credit where credit is due, Chambers acted swiftly and decisively in this instance, and we applaud him for that. We encourage him to be as responsive to issues in the future.
For their part, NARTH has removed the recent Glatze interview, and replaced the link with the following comment:
Following the counsel of our friends at Exodus and others in the ex-gay community we have removed the Michael Glatze interview from our site. Some of his public comments have been found to be offensive to NARTH and hurtful to others. It is never appropriate to make some of the comments attributed to Mr. Glatze and we at NARTH wish to make our disapproval public.
While clearly this was the responsible thing to do in this instance (not having posted the interview in the first place would have been ideal), it would be irresponsible not to note that NARTH has a long way to go if they wish to be taken seriously. As we mentioned in the previous post on this, Berger, Schoenewolf and Phelan all remain members of their Scientific Advisory Committee. And the original Nicolosi interview with Glatze is still available (PDF) on their website.
As many sites have linked to the Glatze interviews (the first was in 2007), using him as a positive example, would it not be prudent to replace the original articles with an explanation of why he is not to be taken as a role model? In this way, others who trusted NARTH’s promotion of him could learn the truth instead of just finding silence.
Perhaps Chambers can mention these facts to the audience tomorrow?
Update: Barely a day after posting it, NARTH has removed their explanation for removing the second Glatze interview. As they have done before, it is just swept under the rug.