Google has so far refused to take down an app ‘Living Hope Ministries’, already barred by Apple, Amazon and Microsoft, that aims to convince people that their same-sex sexual attractions are both sinful and changeable.
“Every minute this heinous product is available on these platforms, the potential exists for it to harm LGBT youth,” Truth Wins Out (NGO) executive director Wayne Besen said in a statement after Apple announced it was removing it.
Google has so far not met with LGBTQ rights groups, despite their efforts to speak with the company about its decision, although there have reportedly been staff-level meetings.
By any standard, the app is awful,” they continue. “It brazenly compares homosexuality to an addiction. It casually trashes LGBT people as living ‘destructive lifestyles.’”
“Living Hope, the creator of the app, repeatedly belittles transgender people as suffering from ‘gender confusion.’ The group refers to gay men as ‘sexually broken guys’ who can ‘walk out of false identities’ and claims, without evidence, that the ‘gay lifestyle’ is ‘spiritually and physically harmful.’”
What pro-LGBT organizations are saying
“We are hopeful that technology companies recognize the harm of apps that promote conversion therapy. The Trevor Project hears from conversion therapy survivors in crisis every day, and we remain committed to ending the harmful practice in every state because we know it contributes to an increased risk of suicidal behavior among LGBTQ youth,” said Trevor Project CEO Amit Paley.
“We have been urging Google to remove this app because it is life-threatening to LGBTQ youth and also clearly violates the company’s own standards. Amazon, Apple and Microsoft have taken action to remove the app from their platforms, but so far Google has refused despite our warnings about the dangers,” said a Human Rights Campaign spokesperson.
The app reportedly provides users with recordings of sermons and text devotionals; there’s also a section for “help,” reportedly contains stories telling gay and lesbian readers that their sexuality can be ignored or changed. However, the app’s supporters maintain that it does not endorse or practice gay conversion therapy.
“We are hopeful that technology companies recognize the harm of apps that promote conversion therapy. The Trevor Project hears from conversion therapy survivors in crisis every day, and we remain committed to ending the harmful practice in every state because we know it contributes to an increased risk of suicidal behavior among LGBTQ youth,” Trevor Project CEO Amit Paley told Axios.
Source – axios.com, pinknews.co.uk, foxnews.com, newnownext.com