"Gay Conversion Therapy, You Make Me Sick" Prof. Sheldon Helms

As our country tackles the issue of marriage equality, gays in the military and other forms of inclusion of gays and lesbians into mainstream society, and as Russia and other countries enforce laws limiting the rights of their gay and lesbian citizens, fringe religious and therapeutic organizations have operated mostly in the shadows, attempting to "convert" their homosexual clients to heterosexuality through a mixture of prayer and pseudoscience.

Helms describes the history of attempts to define homosexuality as an illness and to make gays go straight.

Some forms of gay conversion therapy have been outlawed in California and New Jersey, and one of the primary institutions that promoted it has announced its closure, but what are the real stories behind these announcements, and do they go far enough?

Sheldon Helms is an associate professor of psychology at Ohlone College in Fremont, CA. He has taught psychology for more than 16 years over a wide range of topics including Abnormal Psychology, Experimental Psychology, Social Psychology, and Human Sexuality. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Bay Area Skeptics, is a regular contributor to the James Randi Educational Foundation's SWIFT blog, and is the founder of the Ohlone Psychology Club Speaker Series through which he regularly hosts top name speakers in science and skepticism.

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  • Frank M.

    I am out front, I will let everyone in, the library is closed except for us

    March 23, 2014

  • David J.

    Can anyone give me a ride from Watt and I-80. I have the ride from taken care of. Please call[masked] Thanks

    March 23, 2014

  • David J.

    Do we have the library until 8? What time is your finish, I expect it is possible to go see Cosmos after with some of the gang.

    1 · March 19, 2014

    • Frank M.

      We have the library until 8, I imagine the talk won't go much past 7:15 or 7:30. There should be plenty of time to make it to the Cosmos meetup :)

      1 · March 19, 2014

    • David J.

      Thanks for the info. I'll plan for both.

      1 · March 20, 2014

  • Olivia

    aaaaand, now you all know the extent of my reading comprehension. I'll just be in the corner.

    February 23, 2014

    • Frank M.

      Oh no! Happens to all of us! I hope you and your friend or friends will be able to make it on March 23rd!

      February 23, 2014

    • Frank M.

      The library does close at 5 though, but we will have access on that day to the meeting room :)

      1 · February 23, 2014

  • Olivia

    Hmm, was there a secret entrance we were supposed to know about? The library closed at 5 it says?

    February 23, 2014

  • Olivia

    I'd like to attend this on Sunday. I was wondering a few things (as this would be the first meetup I've attended for this group), is it okay to bring others with me? I'm in a psychology club and would like to invite one or two others as well.

    1 · February 20, 2014

    • Sheldon W. H.

      I can't speak for the group, but as the speaker, I say bring as many as you can! The more, the merrier!

      1 · February 20, 2014

    • Olivia

      Excellent, thanks so much!

      1 · February 20, 2014

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Rafaël

We just grab a coffee and speak French. Some people have been coming every week for months... it creates a kind of warmth to the group.

Rafaël, started French Conversation Group

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