ADF: Michigan censors discussions between counselors, clients

July 27, 2023
World Net Daily

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

Michigan has adopted a law that gives government officials the authority to censor, and actually insert themselves, into conversations between counselors and their clients.

And it's unconstitutional, according to a statement from ADF, a legal team that has argued against the ideology that allows governments to ban counseling for individuals who have unwanted same-sex attractions.

Michigan joined nearly two dozen other states with similar censorship programs, but that doesn't make it legal, according to lawyer Greg Baylor of the ADF.

"The government has no business censoring conversations between patients and counselors. HB 4616 jeopardizes constitutionally protected freedom of speech by allowing government officials to insert themselves into private conversations between counselors and their clients," he said.

"Counselors shouldn’t be used as tools to impose the government’s views on their clients, and the government has no right to block clients from receiving counseling that is consistent with their religious beliefs and self-selected counseling goals.

Social and legacy media outlets consistently have adopted the description of such counseling as "conversion therapy," when it actually does not do any "conversion" and is not intended as such.

Its goals are to deal with the issues that a client has, and if that is same-sex attractions that are unwanted, to include those.

The dispute has had mixed results in courts around the nation, and the Supreme Court has not yet ruled whether governments have such censorship authority.

Some courts have affirmed such state censorship plans, in other locations they've been struck as violations of the First Amendment.

Media outlets commonly call the practice "discredited," and noted that the Michigan ban is for minors, under the plan signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

It is the 22nd state with the same, or similar, censorship ideologies now embedded in its laws.

Those laws, incidentally, often are used to promote the concepts found in the LGBT community, and counselors are encouraged to promote those lifestyle choices.

Whitmer claimed the law makes Michigan a state "where you can be who you are."

The counseling bans have been complicated recently by those who are promoting transgenderism, mean exceptions now need to be carved out in the counseling bans to allow therapy for those who are male, who say they are women and want to "convert" to being female, for example.

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