A plan pending in the California legislature that promoters say is necessary so people with same-sex inclinations don’t hear messages challenging them has now gotten the attention of Gov. Mike Huckabee.
In a message to supporters he says the proposal, AB 2943, on which WND has reported multiple times, is “a terrible storm that’s brewing on the horizon.”
It would ban counseling, conferences and even printed materials that advocate for ways to get rid of unwanted same-sex attractions, and several experts have not only confirmed the vaguely written proposal could ban sales of Bibles, but one ministry expert has announced plans to boycott the state with his conferences.
“You may have heard the news or seen the reports, but people of faith in California are bracing for one of the most dramatic ideological shifts away from the First Amendment in our nation’s history,” Huckabee said. “It’s the kind of storm that destroys the foundations of liberty and a free society.”
He pointed out the bill, passed in the California Assembly 50-18 and soon to be voted on in the state Senate, “would make illegal any sale of goods or services that seek to change an individual’s sexual orientation, behaviors or gender expressions.”
The governor, now serving as a commentator in several capacities, said, “It prevents faith-led counselors from assisting clients with same-sex attraction or gender confusion. It prohibits churches from holding any ticketed events addressing topics of sexuality.
“But it’s FAR more reaching than that,” he said. “This means the sale of ANY book that states the practice of homosexuality or transgender identification as immoral actions would be illegal in California. …This could include the Bible!”
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He said sponsors deny it, but the “legal experts agree that AB 2943 is so broadly worded in its description of prohibited activities that it can easily be interpreted to stop the sale goods and services that promote a biblical worldview!”
He warned, “This is a massive attack on Christianity. It should alarm us that the constitutional problems inherent in the bill were not obvious to those in the California Assembly.”
WND reported just days ago that a Colorado-based Christian group canceled conferences it planned to hold in the Golden State and instead will send students to “other states where we can tell them the truth.”
Jeff Myers, president of Summit Ministries, explained his group helps students “develop an intelligent, defensible Christian worldview before they go to college.”
He called the wording of California’s AB 2943, which bans commercial messages promoting counseling or therapy to free people from same-sex behavior, “a dog whistle to the left that intelligent Christians holding traditional views are fair game for discrimination, smears and frivolous lawsuits.”
His group, he said, for 55 years has held conferences at its headquarters in Manitou Springs, Colorado, and across the nation, “training nearly a half-million young Christians to become leaders in their schools, communities, churches, families and country.”
Summit Ministries, however, has canceled its June 10-23 and June 24-July 7 sessions at Biola University near Los Angeles “due to concerns that California will forbid some of what it teaches.”
Myers said his group’s speakers are “leading Christian experts who base their presentations on theology as well as sociology, psychology and science.”
The California bill, he said, in the state’s Business and Professional Code, would regard the offering of gay-conversion therapy as “consumer fraud.”
Under the bill, “offering to engage in, or engaging in sexual orientation change efforts with an individual” would constitute deceptive business practices and be subject to fines and penalties.
WND has reported a lawmaker and an LGBT activist have admitted the bill targets “pastors” and members of the “faith community.”