Bush's homophobic Surgeon General nominee garners more slams
“Dr. Holsinger has a record that is unworthy of America?s doctor. His writings suggest a scientific view rooted in anti-gay beliefs that are incompatible with the job of serving the medical health of all Americans. It is essential that America’s top doctor value sound science over anti-gay ideology.”
— HRC’s President Joe Solmonese on the Kentucky cardiologist nominee for Surgeon General, who backs ex-gay ministries
The heat is turned up as more eyes are on the background of Dr. James Holsinger, Dear Leader’s nominee for Surgeon General (see earlier Blend post on this news). From HRC’s press release:
In a document titled “Pathophysiology of Male Homosexuality,” Dr. Holsinger opined, in his capacity as a physician, that biology and anatomy precluded considering GLBT equality in his denomination. The opinion very clearly states that this is his scientific view, stating that theological views are separate.
Additionally, Dr. Holsinger and his wife were founders of Hope Springs Community Church which, according to the church’s pastor, ministers to people who no longer wish to be gay or lesbian. The pastor, Rev. David Calhoun, said that the church has an “ex-gay” ministry. “We see that as an issue not of orientation but a lifestyle,” Calhoun said. “We have people who seek to walk out of that lifestyle.” This type of “ex gay” conversion therapy has been condemned by almost every major, reputable medical organization — including the American Psychological Association which issued a condemnation over ten years ago.
“Although the church’s theology isn’t being nominated, this discredited practice purports to be a psychological and medical service, and if Dr. Holsinger is involved in any way, it conflicts with his duty to accept and promote sound science in the interest of public health,” continued Solmonese.
Soulforce on the nom:
“Dr. James Holsinger has demonstrated in the past that he harbors religious-based prejudice towards homosexuals,” said Jamie McDaniel, coordinator of Soulforce Lexington, the local chapter of a national organization that opposes the use of religion to oppress lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. “As a gay American, I am deeply concerned over any surgeon general nominee not being healed of such personal prejudice.”
I think this nomination presents a real opportunity to give America a view into the ex-gay movement; after all, Congress will get to question Holsinger about his views of science, homosexuality and whether his personal religious beliefs inform or affects his positions on medical issues.
Bonus: Is it not surprising that Holsinger gave a boatload of money to the Republican party and candidates — $23K — between 1997 and 2007. Here’s who benefited from Dr. Holsinger’s largesse:
Gov. Ernie Fletcher, $5,750; President George W. Bush, $3,000; state Sen. Alice Forgy Kerr, $2,600; U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning, $2,500; state Sen. Tom Buford, $2,000; Republican National Committee, $2,000; Republican Party of Kentucky, $2,000; U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, $1,000; and former Lexington mayoral candidate and Urban County council member Scott Crosbie, $1,000.