A Doctor's Apology

Listen

With this week's win for same-sex benefits in America, it seems attitudes are incrementally shifting towards a sexual orientation considered a mental illness just forty years ago. In today's documentary, we hear from a doctor who contended gay people could be converted, and now seeks redemption for it.



When the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act this week, gay couples and their supporters across the U.S. were overjoyed, thus creating a task for the federal bureaucrats who must deal with the impact.

Marital status is relevant to more than 1,000 US federal laws. The Pentagon and U.S. State department say they will immediately extend employee benefits to same-sex partners. This acceptance of gay citizens is hardly sudden --- but attitudes have changed with remarkable speed.

Listen to our documentary from our archives, To Serve With Pride, the story of veterans and what it was like for them to be gay in the U.S. military:

From The Current Archives: To Serve With Pride

Download Flash Player to view this content.


Homosexuality was still considered a mental disorder by the American Psychiatric Association in 1973. And the man who helped declassify it recently felt the need to apologize over another gay controversy.

The Current's producer Josh Bloch produced this documentary last fall. It's called Straightening the Record: A Doctor's Apology. It originally aired on September 4, 2012 as part of our project on ethics called Line in the Sand. You can find other other stories from the series on our website -- and hear some of the highlights from Line in The Sand on our summer show. You can download all 10 episodes from the site.

And one brief add to the story we just heard. Earlier this month, Exodus International, the most prominent organization promoting the idea that gay people can get straight through therapy, closed shop. The president of Exodus apologized to the gay community for the hurt he believes his group caused.


Last Word - Canada Day Promo

Coming up Monday, Canada Day, on The Summer edition of The Current, a tribute to the people who'll forever be part of this country -- The Dead. The Current goes in search of late and prominent, formerly living Canadians to discover where they ended up. You'll be surprised.


Other segment from today's show:

Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Submission Policy

Note: The CBC does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that comments are moderated and published according to our submission guidelines.