Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Besen parodies "Dr." Cohen's gay cure therapy on TDS

Wayne Besen from Truth Wins Out tried out Richard Cohen's (Wiki) ex-gay therapy on The Daily Show last night. It was hilarious!

Cohen knew that TDS was going to poke fun at him, so he did what I heard (Fresh Air) former TDS correspondents Rob and Nate Corddry advised interviewees not to do. He tried to be funny. Cohen cursed, burped, "shook it off"(?), and attempted to catch a football to prove his masculinity. He also did his startling punching the pillow "therapy" and creepy holding shtick. He ended up looking like even an unreputable, attention seeker. He is so unbelievable, I sometimes wonder if he was paid-off by gay activists to undermine the ex-gay movement.

Here's my favorite exchange:

Jason Jones, The Daily Show: Welcome back to the program. Like millions of Americans, Wayne Besen suffered from chronic gay. It was thought to be untreatable, but one intrepid doctor found a cure.

Richard Cohen, International Healing Foundation: Homosexuality is not a disease. It's an emotional condition that needs to be addressed.

Jones: Meet Doctor Richard Cohen author of Coming Out Straight and America's foremost gay healer.

Cohen: People who are living a gay live can choose to change and come out straight.

Jones: Thank you for setting the record straight, doctor.

Cohen: I'm not a doctor. I'm a certified sexual reorientation coach.

[audience laughter]

Jones: Oh. Well, you're a psychiatrist?

Cohen: No, I'm not.

Jones: But you're licensed?

Cohen: No.

Jones: Jewish?

Cohen: Jewish? Uh, by birth.

Jones: Which is good enough to get him on CNN. . . .

I checked out his foundation's website. He advertises himself as a "psychotherapist" and apparently created the certification counseling program himself. Also, according to a Wikipedia entry, he was expelled from the American Counseling Association and "avoids State licensing requirements by asking for donations to his foundations instead of payment".

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