Delegates to the Texas Democratic Party’s convention in Dallas on Saturday slammed their Republican rivals for approving a platform which includes support for attempts to turn gay people straight.
The Texas Democrats have instead put denying public funds to programs that attempt to alter a person’s sexuality in their platform and also want the Texas Department of State Health Services to investigate people who try to provide such services.
The platform also calls for the repeal of the remaining section of the Federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the Texas state Defense of Marriage Act and the Texas Constitutional Marriage Amendment which same-sex marriage in the state.
LGBTI rights took pride of place at the convention with San Antonio Democratic Congressman Joaquin Castro calling out recent comments by Texas Governor Rick Perry in which he supported efforts to attempt to ‘cure’ people of their sexual orientations – comparing them to alcoholics.
‘Governor Perry, if you believe gay people need repairing, then I would suggest your soul needs repairing,’ Castro told the convention.
If they win government in Texas the Democrats have also pledged to better protect LGBTI people from discrimination and hate crimes in Texas.
Stonewall Democrats in the state have also launched a campaign on social media against ‘ex-gay’ therapies using the hashtag #WeDontNeedFixin.
So-called reparative therapies aimed at changing a person’s sexual orientation have been banned in California and New Jersey and the practices have been found to be without merit and potentially damaging by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the World Health Organization and the National Association of Social Workers.