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View Diary: Right-Wing Groups Announce Lawsuits to Stop CA SB 1172 (77 comments)

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  •  It is recognition of the fact that (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wilderness voice

    despite the "gay agenda" belief of wingnut christianists, everybody knows that nobody is trying to change the sexual orientation of straights.

    •  Not a good response to an equal protection (0+ / 0-)

      argument.

      •  Simple response: (0+ / 0-)

        the text of the bill as written is not exclusive of the treatments you're describing.  The section you think has an Equal Protection problem begins with "this includes" rather than "this consists of", so the limits on the bill's application are not defined against an Equal Protection charge.  The limits of the bill are defined by "any practices by mental health providers that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation", inclusive, no Equal Protection violation.

        So why'd they write it this way, to call attention to one type and not the other?  Because one type exists and the other does not.  But the statute as written would prohibit even your hypothetical example by a plain reading of its provisions.

        Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

        by pico on Wed Oct 03, 2012 at 11:48:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think you are right (0+ / 0-)
          (b) (1) “Sexual orientation change efforts” means any practices by mental health providers that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation. This includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.
          Although seeking to change an individual's sexual orientation in either direction is prohibited, it appears that the law prohibits seeking to "eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex" but not to the opposite sex.
          •  I don't see that in the text: (0+ / 0-)

            I see two statements there:

            "Sexual orientation change efforts" means any practices by mental health providers that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation.
            This line is inclusive, and makes no distinction between opposite- or same-sex counseling.
            This includes efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions, or to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.
            This line is an example of, rather than a definition of, the extent of this law.  "Includes" is the operative word; compare a hypothetical that doesn't make this distinction:
            Sexual orientation change efforts" means any practices by mental health providers that seek to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions or feelings toward individuals of the same sex.
            If the law were worded like this, I'd agree with you.  But I think "includes" is typically read as "can be, but is not limited to", which makes all the difference.

            Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

            by pico on Wed Oct 03, 2012 at 06:14:48 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  There you get into the rules for textual analysis (0+ / 0-)

              of laws.

              In general, courts interpret laws based on the assumption that every word means something - that law makers are not just including something as an interesting aside.

              That means that if a law specifically states that it applies to X but does not state that it applies to Y it is usually interpreted to mean that it does not apply to Y.

              This is an exact example of such a case.

              The law specifically includes efforts to eliminate or reduce sexual or romantic attractions to members of the same sex but says nothing about the opposite sex.

              •  Nope. (0+ / 0-)

                The law specifically applies to "any" attempts to change sexual orientation, full stop: you can't ignore the first sentence of the statute as if it doesn't exist.

                What you're referring to is a type of law that says it applies to X, wherein we wouldn't apply it to Y.  But that's not what this statute does: it says "All sets, including X".  Y is included as a member of the set defined in the first sentence.  

                Saint, n. A dead sinner revised and edited. - Ambrose Bierce

                by pico on Wed Oct 03, 2012 at 11:48:07 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

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