After months of LGBTQ activists collecting more than 82,000 signatures urging Amazon to remove harmful titles promoting conversion therapy, the online retailer announced last week that they have pulled some of the books that are full of the harmful rhetoric. While the victory is validation for LGBTQ folks and their families worldwide, some in the Christian community are not taking the change with grace.
The main title in question, brought to Amazon’s attention by activist Rojo Alan, was A Parent’s Guide To Preventing Homosexuality by therapist Joseph Nicolosi, who is considered to be the “father of conversion therapy.” Nicolosi, who passed in 2017, spent the majority of his career working with queer teenagers and promoted the idea that homosexuality is a symptom of early childhood trauma. He believed that people could diminish same-sex attractions through reparative therapy.
“Amazon’s decision is no surprise, since today’s culture is caving to the goals of the LGBTQ political movement, which have always included the silencing [of] any disapproval of homosexuality,” author Joe Dallas said in an email to The Christian Post.
Dallas is one of the writers whose books were removed from Amazon’s marketplace, and he, alongside others who promote the practice of “reparative therapy,” have began their own petition accusing the retailer of censorship.
After collecting just under their projected 5,000 signatures in their own Change.org petition requesting to have the removed titles reinstated, Amazon responded by stating that although they provide “customers with a variety of viewpoints, it reserves the right not to sell books that contradict its content guidelines,” reported The Christian Broadcasting Network.
Sources like Life Site are claiming that Amazon’s choice to ban titles are a wave in the direction of LGBTQ progress is “disturbing” and asks the “logical next question” of providing an alternative viewpoint of queer life: “Will Amazon ban the bible next?”
Sam Brinton, head of the queer youth suicide prevention program The Trevor Project, told Huffington Post that they consider the removal of Nicolosi’s books to be a positive step.
“Amazon is the nation’s largest seller of online books,” Brinton told the publication. “It is significant that they are taking the threat of conversion therapy seriously by refusing to be a party to the exploitation of concerned parents and other customers who deserve accurate information, not DIY conversion therapy manuals that should clearly be labeled as ‘fiction.’”
The topic remains a hot-button item as Christians fight back against the removal and LGBTQ activists urge Amazon to remove any remaining books which promote the practice. Amazon has yet to make a statement as to why certain titles are still available for sale on the site.