Brett Kavanaugh, who likes beer, thinks subjecting queer kids to psychological torture should be up for debate

Brett Kavanaugh, who likes beer, thinks subjecting queer kids to psychological torture should be up for debate

You are currently viewing Brett Kavanaugh, who likes beer, thinks subjecting queer kids to psychological torture should be up for debate
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Judge Brett Kavanaugh testifies to the Senate Judiciary Committee during his Supreme Court confirmation hearing in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill September 27, 2018 in Washington, DC

This morning, the Supreme Court voted 6-3 against hearing a case about whether state and local governments can enforce bans on conversion therapy for LGBTQ+ youth.

The case involved Brian Tingley, a licensed marriage and family counselor from Washington, who said not being allowed to offer conversion therapy to kids in an effort to change their sexual orientation or gender identity is a violation of his free speech.

Washington is one of 26 states that has either banned or restricted conversion therapy. Tingley’s lawyers argued that their client, who is a practicing Christian, lives in “continuous fear of government persecution” as a result his state’s ban.

Of the nine SCOTUS justices, three of them said they would have liked to hear Tingley’s case.

In his scathing five-page dissent, Clarence Thomas wrote that there’s “a fierce public debate over how best to help minors with gender dysphoria” and that the state had “silenced one side of this debate.”

(Fact check: This is simply not true. When it comes to conversation therapy, the debate has been settled for years. Countless human rights and medical organizations, including the American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association, and World Health Organization, have all denounced the practice. Some have gone so far as to declare it torture.)

Meanwhile, in a separate brief opinion, Samuel Alito added the case “presents a question of national importance.” Noting the number of states with laws against conversion therapy, 73-year-old Alito wrote that “it is beyond dispute that these laws restrict speech, and all restrictions on speech merit careful scrutiny.”

(Never mind the free speech of LGBTQ+ kids who don’t want to be subjected to bogus therapies aimed at changing who they are.)

The third justice who said he wanted to hear that case was none other than Brett Kavanaugh, who likes beer.

Since being appointed to the Supreme Court by one-term, twice-impeached, quadruply-indicted ex-president Donald Trump in 2018, 58-year-old Kavanaugh has proven that he’s no ally to LGBTQ+ people.

In 2020, he dissented in Bostock v. Clayton County, in which the court ruled 6-3 that sexual orientation and gender identity should be included in workplace nondiscrimination protections under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The other two justices to dissent in that case were–surprise!–Thomas and Alito.

Now, in 2023, he’s shown that he thinks queer kids should be forced to endure psychological torture.

Thankfully, cooler heads on the court prevailed today when the majority of justices declined to hear the case, which means state and local laws banning conversion therapy will remain in place. Phew!

As is customary, the high court didn’t give a reason for declining the case. In response, an attorney with the Christian legal organization, Alliance Defending Freedom, called the decision a disappointment and said the issue “is not going away.”


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