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Trump adviser told LGBT teenager who ‘seriously contemplated suicide’ to change her sexual orientation

Josh Milton January 14, 2020
US president Donald Trump is greeting by pastor Robert Jeffress

US president Donald Trump is greeting by pastor Robert Jeffress during the Celebrate Freedom Rally at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. (Olivier Douliery-Pool via Getty Images)

An LGBT+ teenager close to considering suicide came to her minister for guidance only to be advised to “change her sexuality”.

That minister, Robert Jeffress, would later become one of US president Donald Trump’s advisers. Figures.

Jeffress, an evangelical pastor, is often called upon by the president when he needs guidance on how to tap into his Christian voting bloc.

Unsurprisingly, the aide has a winding and well-documented history of anti-LGBT+ remarks, such as once claiming gay people “molest children”.

His stances are often so severe that he has been shunned by many moderate Republican lawmakers.

While is résumé is one where, since 2016, he has been a member of Trump’s Evangelical Advisory Board and White House Faith Initiative as well as being a contributor to Fox News.

Minister Robert Jeffress tells teenager to change sexuality through the power of Christ.

In a report by Media Matters into Jeffress homophobia, it detailed how beleaguered teen approached Jeffress for guidance in 2004, according to Jeffress’ book, Hell? Yeah.

He recounted how a high school student identitied as “Susan” had recently come out and admitted to Jeffress she was experiencing suicidal thoughts.

Susan swung by the ministry for guidance, and Jeffress reportedly asked her “God feels about your homosexual activity?”

Robert Jeffress poses for a portrait after service at First Baptist Dallas church in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ilana Panich-Linsman for The Washington Post via Getty Images)
Robert Jeffress poses for a portrait after service at First Baptist Dallas church in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ilana Panich-Linsman for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

The teenager replied: “I understand now that God created me with these desires, desires that I have had since I was a little girl.

“For years, I have been miserable trying to deny those feelings and have seriously contemplated suicide.

“But now that I have accepted who I am, I am happier than I have ever been in my life!”

However, Jeffress hounded the high schooler and said her answer wasn’t satisfactory and then segued into quoting religious scripture as well as bringing “up the issue of choice”.

Jeffress claimed that the “magnetic pull towards the forbidden”, which includes “violence, substance abuse and […] toward homosexuality” can be changed “through the power of Jesus Christ”.

He also credited Irving Bieber, an American psychoanalyst whose theories on homosexuality have long since been discredited and expelled from academic circles.

“I wish I could report that after hearing the above information, she renounced her homosexual tendencies, confessed her sin to God, and left my office with a newfound attraction to the opposite sex,” Jeffress wrote in the text.

“She didn’t.”

Good on her, we say.

 

More: conversion therapy, Donald Trump, Pastor Robert Jeffress, Robert Jeffress

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