The 2018 NEA Representative Assembly Caucus Report

The Purpose of the Caucus
The 2018 NEA Representative Assembly Caucus Report

This year’s NEA RA was held in Minneapolis, MN, my home state, from June 30- July 5. Greg Quinlan, ex-gay from New Jersey, was our awesome guest all six days. (See Links) Jeralee Smith, NEA Ex-Gay Educators’ Caucus founder and current member was also present for the entire convention. We were able to dialogue with and hand out a lot of scientific, research-based information to interested delegates who visited our exhibit.
Early in the convention, a new delegate enthusiastically came to our booth. She informed me that our NEA Ex-Gay Educators’ Caucus booth was the most important caucus/exhibit there. She proceeded to tell me that she grew up in CA and had been taught and indoctrinated with inaccurate information on sexuality and transgenderism in the public schools. She said that pretty soon she was so confused she didn’t know “who she was, what she was or where she was.” She attributes the confusion in large part to the misinformation she was taught. She stated, “After a long, devastating journey, I had to start reading the Bible to “get my head on straight.” She urged, “Please continue what you are doing in this caucus, so others don’t have to go through the devastation I went through.” This is exactly one of the reasons this caucus exists.
Here are some of the MYTHS being propagated and the scientific, research-based response:

1. Sexual Orientation and gender dysphoria are fixed, inborn traits, like race.
2. Homosexual attractions and gender dysphoria experienced by minors are enduring.
3. LGBTQ behaviors carry no increased health risks as compared to heterosexual behavior.
4. Scientific research proves that psychotherapy to explore sexual attractions and gender identity (pejoratively dubbed ‘conversion therapy’) is universally harmful.
As a follow-up to last year’s New Business Item which was referred to Committee on the promise that President Eskelsen-Garcia would personally oversee its proceedings: “For the 2018 RA, NEA, will thoroughly review and evaluate RA exhibitors’ materials for information that is offensive, obscene, or in bad taste. Based on the findings of the review the NEA will enforce its standing rules 12.B (b) and 12.B (d) as they relate to exhibitors found in violation of the aforementioned rules. Because of concerns brought by 2017 RA delegates, special scrutiny will be made to the following exhibitors:
1. NEA Ex-Gay Educators
2. Creation Truth Outreach
3. Creation Science Educators”
This year, to NEA’s credit, all of our materials for the 2018 convention were approved as they have been every year. We commend them for their fairness in this free speech, democratic process.
However, there was one major area of concern at this year’s 2018 Convention. NBI #121 was presented which recommended banning therapy.
NBI #121- “Using existing resources, NEA will release a public statement in opposition to conversion therapy, repairative [sic] therapy, reorientation, or any other process to alter a student’s orientation or identity.” President Lily Eskelsen-Garcia was presiding over the debate in which NEA rules call for a fair debate, one for, one against, and so on. She knowingly allowed views against the NBI to be silenced. How did it happen? LGBT activists used lies and coercion by signing up to speak against the ban and then speaking for the ban and taking slots of speech set aside for opposing viewpoints. President Eskelsen Garcia stated that she knew what they were doing and yet allowed silencing of any dissenting viewpoints, of which at least one member had signed up to speak. (Video evidence of the proceedings available upon request.) In reporting convention proceedings to one of the NEA members and union activists in my district in Minnesota, I mentioned this silencing. She stated that actions like these may cause individuals to choose to no longer be a member of NEA. NEA prides itself on being the largest, democratic, deliberative body in the world. Why are they not allowing both sides of an issue to be debated?
This is exactly why this caucus exists- to make change in the NEA to include scientific, research-based information on sexual and transgender issues for the sake and safety of our precious public-school children.

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Halvorson
NEA Ex-Gay Educators Chair

The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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The 2017 NEA Representative Assembly Caucus Report

Do Facts Really Matter?
The 2017 NEA Representative Assembly Caucus Report

The 2017 NEA Convention was held in Boston, MA, June 30- July 5. This year’s guests at our caucus booth were amazing: Walt Heyer, former transgender, and his wife, Kaycee; and David Pickup, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Walt Heyer was born a male and at age 42, with the advice of a physician, went through the entire procedure to have sex- reassignment surgery to transition to a woman. As a young child, his grandmother had dressed him up as a girl, and at an early age he was molested by an uncle. Following his transitioning, after eight years of living as a woman, he deeply regretted this decision. He decided to go back to living as his biological sex, a male. He states that when he decided to transition from a man to a woman, he had all the support one could want, but when he decided to transition back to his biological sex, there was no support to be found. He actually was slandered and harassed by many members of the LGBT community who were formerly supportive. Walt knows the personal pain he went through and he has committed his life to helping others in his same position. Because of his brokenness and the hope he found, he is currently helping people in 180 nations who have contacted him with regrets after their sex-reassignment surgery. I would encourage you to read his very compassionate and revealing books: Paper Genders; Gender, Lies and Suicide- A Whistleblower Speaks Out; A Transgender’s Faith.
The other guest to our booth was David Pickup, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist from Dallas, Texas. He came to the NEA at my request to help NEA members understand the terms “conversion therapy” and “reparative therapy” which are terms often used in the NEA. Following is his explanation. “To help clarify each, ‘conversion therapy’, suggests coercion and unethical therapeutic practices and is NOT something licensed, professional therapists support. ‘Conversion Therapy” is not a therapeutic term, but a term dubbed several years ago by LGBT activists. True trained, licensed therapists believe in the individual’s right to autonomy and they help individuals who seek their assistance to write and work toward goals that the client desires and identifies. ‘Reparative therapy’, although the term itself may constitute the idea that someone needs to “be fixed”, in its true meaning, does not mean that LGBT persons are mentally ill and must be fixed. This term refers to the research and anecdotal evidence that indicates homosexual feelings are a reparative drive to get emotional needs met in childhood and become sexualized in puberty. With this meaning, Reparative Therapy is used by a trained, licensed therapist to conduct psychotherapy/talk therapy, to help an individual resolve gender inferiority, and unmet needs in childhood for affection, affirmation and approval. It actually resolves any and all shame clients may feel, and it uses unconditional compassion.” We, as a caucus, believe the individual has a right to choose his or her pathway and deserves the right to choose a trained, licensed therapist who uses talk therapy to help them meet their self-identified goals.
This year was an interesting one for the Ex-Gay Educators Caucus. New Business Item 86 was written by a delegate from Massachusetts to try to remove our exhibit from the convention. The wording stated:
NBI 86- “Be it moved that the NEA implement its own rules and regulations on “Becoming an Exhibitor” to NEA caucuses Ex-Gay Educator and immediately remove the exhibit from the exhibit hall on the grounds that this exhibit violates existing NEA exhibitor standards. These standards state that exhibitors may not distribute materials that are offensive, distracting, or discriminatory.
Rationale/Background- NEA Expo Rules and Regulations Management reserves the right to deny any and all applications. Applicants must adhere to policies on non-discrimination and can be defined as obscene, distracting, and disruptive. This exhibit meets all criteria for an outside exhibitor.
Submitted By: Majority vote at regularly called meeting of the state (Massachusetts) delegation in connection with the annual meeting.”

When the item came to a vote, the NEA President, Lily Eskelsen Garcia, stated that NBI 86 would most likely be ruled Out of Order. In the meantime, it was decided that New Business Item 154 be combined with NBI 86 to form the following New Business Item
“For the 2018 RA, NEA, will thoroughly review and evaluate RA exhibitors’ materials for information that is offensive, obscene, or in bad taste. Based on the findings of the review the NEA will enforce its standing rules 12.B (b) and 12.B (d) as they relate to exhibitors found in violation of the aforementioned rules. Because of concerns brought by 2017 RA delegates, special scrutiny will be made to the following exhibitors:
1. NEA Ex-Gay Educators
2. Creation Truth Outreach
3. Creation Science Educators”
After discussion (which included inaccurate information against our caucus), on the promise that President Eskelsen-Garcia would personally oversee its implementation, the delegation voted to refer this new business item to the Annual Meeting Review Committee.
As you may have noticed, the title of this report is, “Do Facts Really Matter?”. The NEA Ex-Gay Educators Caucus has been in existence for 13 years. We have followed all NEA rules including getting all our materials approved by NEA each year. Our purpose has never been to tell people what to do, but to offer research, science-based materials that can provide understanding and facts on these very emotional topics. Each year we invite experts in the field to come and have dialogue with interested delegates who stop by our booth. In the past our guests have included numerous ex-gays, pediatricians/health professionals, and researchers. We have always welcomed all viewpoints to stop at our booth and engage in respectful dialogue.
I wish facts would matter. Before accusing, let’s be open-minded enough to check out the information and prove for ourselves whether it’s accurate or not. Let’s read the materials carefully so we aren’t falsely accusing, like the delegate who held up the American College of Pediatricians document we handed out at our booth entitled, ”ACPeds, AAPS, CMDA, and CMA Support Minors’ Right to Therapy” and stated that The American College of Pediatricians supported “conversion therapy” when, in fact, the College does not support it. The document actually stated, that in an attempt to ban so-called “conversion therapy,” legislatures are banning ethical talk therapy. The College believes that therapy for minors with unwanted same-sex attractions and/or gender dysphoria must NOT be banned. The state must not violate minors’ right to seek psychotherapy they believe may aid them, and must not restrict the right of licensed professional counselors to provide this ethical care. I would encourage you to read the accompanying science and researched documents put out by the College of Pediatricians ( on these very important topics.
I have found that sometimes those who claim to be the most tolerant are the ones forcing their views on others or silencing those who hold a different viewpoint no matter if they have facts or not. I believe all of us could only wish for respect and fairness, which is something I could only hope the NEA stands for.

Respectfully submitted,
Susan Halvorson, Caucus Chair

The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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NEA Representative Assembly- ExGay Caucus Exhibit Booth Report 2016

The NEA Representative Assembly met in Washington, DC, July 2- 7, 2016. This year we were able to have our caucus exhibit booth all six days, rather than our usual two days.

Caucus booth special guests included the following experts (See previous posts or links to see some of their important studies and information):

D. Paul Sullins, Ph.D. Department of Sociology, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.
Just released study, “Invisible Victims: Delayed Onset Depression among Adults with Same-Sex Parents”

Judith A. Reisman, Ph.D. Internationally renowned expert on Dr. Alfred Kinsey, from the Kinsey Institute- Indiana University and his fraudulent sex studies and publications which have affected our nation’s laws and sex education programs. Dr. Reisman has testified before the US Congress, high-level commissions, and the US Supreme Court.  Please read her book, Stolen Honor, Stolen Innocence. She explains how the work of Dr. Alfred Kinsey during the 1940s and 1950s contributed to our current sexual practices and beliefs. It was later found that his “sex experiments” were fradulent. Dr. Reisman also uncovered the shocking fact some of the “sex experiments” were even performed on children as young as two months old. This book helps us understand some of our beliefs today on the topic of sexual orientation and sexual beliefs and practices and how they have caused harm.

Dr. Bill Shaw, American College of Pediatricians– visit their website for helpful information related to child health issues.

Peter Sprigg- VP for Policy at the Family Research Council, Washington, DC.
Documents:”Homosexuality in Your Child’s School,” (click the download pdf in order to read the brochure);  “Debating Homosexuality-Understanding Two Views,” (see Quick Links in the right-hand column for a link to this information); “The Transgender Movement and Gender Identity in the Law,” (see Quick Links in the right-hand column for a link to this information); “Title IX and Transgendered Students,” (see Quick Links in the right-hand column for a link to this information).

Dave- an ex-gay shared his story on coming out of homosexuality.

Many interested people stopped by our booth to discuss and gather information. Since transgender is such a topic of consideration, we gave out 100 books, Paper Genders and Gender, Lies and Suicide, written by Walt Heyer, a man who transitioned to being a woman and deeply regretted it. I would encourage you to read his books. They really helped open up my understanding on this very sensitive topic.

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Halvorson
NEA Ex-Gay Educators’ Caucus Chair

The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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Dave’s Testimony

Dave was a special guest at the 2016 NEA Ex-Gay Educators’Caucus booth. The following is his testimony:

My Three Dads
This is a story about my three dads. For most of my life, I felt as if I didn’t have a dad at all. Now, I realize that God has provided father-figures all along, including Himself. Let me tell you a little about them and about me…

In the 60’s an unwanted pregnancy was looked upon with much scorn and shame. So I came into this world feeling rejection from mom, dad, grandparents, the rest of my family and society. Many say that I was an illegitimate child, but now I know that there is no such thing–only illegitimate parents.

My biological father, Ray, never married my mom. Despite many efforts to meet him, Ray chose to shut me out of his life for 46 years. In the fall of 2010, I decided to try, once again, to reach out to him. So, I sent him this testimony. A week later, there was a strong prompting to pray for him, and I did for three days. A month later, he called me and we talked for two hours. I told him that I didn’t want anything from him—just offering the gift of resolution. I felt that he may have been stuffing emotions of guilt and shame for decades. I said that if I were him, I couldn’t live with the fact that I knew I had a son somewhere but didn’t know if he was dead or alive; a good person or a criminal. Nor, would I know what my son loved and hated, or even what he looked like. I told Ray I’d like to meet him and my biological family–but would wait until he was ready. For two years we talked on the phone. Then, in 2012, I went to Minneapolis for a conference and he finally agreed to meet with me. So, at age 48, I got to see my biological father for the first time when we talked for three hours at a restaurant. Ray stated that he didn’t believe I was his son, even though he had paid child support for 22 years. I think this was a self-protection mechanism to justify his actions in rejecting me. After we met, someone told me that he said that we really didn’t connect—but I think that he really didn’t want to connect with me. As a result, of this long-anticipated meeting, I left with a sense of resolution, but also disappointment. Since then, we talked on the phone a number of times, but little came of it. Ray died in 2014 of Leukemia.

My step-dad/adoptive father, Walter, married my mother when I was six months old. He was a Vietnam veteran who experienced the horrors of war. Walter suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and health issues as a result of the war. He used alcohol to self-medicate his emotional and physical pain. And, his violent rages caused a lot of trauma for me as a child. I’ll never forget calling the police when he pulled a knife on my mom. Or, the time he pried the hinges off the bathroom door to get at her.

The effects of growing up as a child of an alcoholic have been many. I tended to overreact to changes I couldn’t control, I had difficulty having fun because I took myself too seriously, I constantly sought approval, I felt different, and I was extremely loyal—even in unhealthy relationships, I also had difficulty finishing projects and I struggled with intimate relationships. Some of these things I still deal with daily.

I felt Walter favored my younger brother, his namesake. Only recently, have I realized this was a misperception on my part. Because my parents divorced when I was young, I never had a dad to play catch with, or to run to when I was afraid. Boys need three things from their fathers—affirmation, attention and affection. I didn’t get any of that from him. As a result, bitterness set in, and for over 20 years, I had nothing to do with my stepfather. Gradually, as I grew to know the Lord, I was able to forgive him and begin a relationship with him and my brother. Now we don’t see each other without an “I love you” and a hug. That forgiveness allowed me to help reconcile my sister with him as well. What a blessing it was to be able to take my nine-year-old nephew to see his grandfather for the first time! Now my family has been restored.

For many years I prayed about my dad’s alcoholism. In 2009, he went to a treatment center and then Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and he has been sober ever since. He even visits other veterans who are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder and alcoholism. I’m so proud of him.

A few years ago, I learned that he had always wanted to adopt me but my mom wouldn’t let him. This caused a lot of friction in their marriage. After waiting many years for him to initiate the adoption discussion, I decided to bring it up. This, I thought, was a way to publicly acknowledge the healing that had taken place in our relationship. So, on April 18, 2011, I was formally adopted at age 48 in a courthouse in Columbus, Ohio.

My mom was a very kind and compassionate woman who became a nurse in order to help others. Throughout her whole life, she was plagued with mental illness, with severe depressions and then bouts of mania. As a result, she was irresponsible and unpredictable in her love. Sometimes she wouldn’t communicate for long periods of time, and then she would be very involved in my life. This fed my sense of rejection and caused instability in my life.

Stability came from my grandmother who lived two blocks away. This strong-willed, kind and extremely generous woman not only raised me, but also provided for me financially and emotionally. In school, I became painfully shy and reclusive. Allergies and asthma kept me from gym class and sports. When teams were chosen, I was always picked last. I felt rejection, and I also rejected myself with feelings of low self-esteem and self-hatred.

Finally, someone really paid attention to me. He was an older second cousin who sexually molested me at age 12. I kept this dark shame a secret, for 13 years, telling no one until I was 25. This, and other factors, opened the door to homosexual attraction.

At the insistence of my devout grandmother, I was active in a lifeless mainline church. At age 15, I accepted Christ as my savior during an evangelistic seminar. While still attending the same church, I started to grow spiritually, on my own, by reading Christian books and listening to Christian radio. When it came time for college, I was blessed to attend a bible-believing Christian school. There, I grew relationally with others and began my journey out of shyness. My family couldn’t afford a private college for me, but God miraculously provided with a campus job and financial aid.

After graduation, I headed to Washington, DC to pursue a career in politics and began attending a vibrant church, where I was baptized. Becoming more aware of homosexual feelings, I got involved in Regeneration which ministers to those with unwanted same-sex attractions. My life was finally starting to click. I become a support group leader and began a serious dating relationship with a girl named Karen. I began to trust God, not only as my Savior, but also as Lord of my life. I was having a fantastic relationship with Him, myself and others and I was on top of the world.

Then, my world came crashing down. It seemed that every summer I was plagued by a persistent and deepening depression. That year, it became so intense that I experienced panic attacks and even began hallucinating. I lost my job, my girlfriend, and the peace I felt from God. I remember crying out to God but I felt the heavens were silent. Under the care of an incompetent counselor and doctor, I plunged into a suicidal depression and became obsessed with dying and going straight to hell.

Then, I found a new Christian counselor who rescued me with medication and therapy. However, my deep depression was followed by an equally unrestrained manic phase. I started many businesses, had grandiose ideas, and plunged head-first into the gay lifestyle.

My life became filled with anonymous sexual partners and hanging out at gay bars, beaches and bathhouses. I decided to seek acceptance from those I thought could relate to me best—other gays. However, more rejection, not acceptance, was what I felt the most. I was rejected by those who were more muscular, handsome and self-assured than I. And, I rejected those who didn’t measure up in my eyes. I allowed myself to be treated in ways I would never otherwise allow. And, treated others in ways I would never otherwise treat them. For seven years, I became the prodigal son with my “to hell with the world” attitude.

I didn’t choose to have homosexual feelings. My research and experience has shown the development of my same-sex attraction was rooted in a number of factors: an absent father, abusive stepfather, strong-willed grandmother, passive grandfather, sensitive personality and sexual abuse. These were things that happened to me. However, there were things that I did to contribute to my problem. I chose how to respond to what happened in my childhood, to act on my same-sex attractions and discount the power of God’s grace in my life. This choice to pursue the gay lifestyle not only endangered my physical life, but also my relational, emotional and spiritual life. It also led to a life-dominating sexual addiction that would take years of pain and struggle to overcome.

My Heavenly Father, Abba
Father God lovingly, and persistently, pursued me. And, in 2000, I started on my journey back home, just like the prodigal son did. I returned to Regeneration and began to deal with my overwhelming sexual addiction, as well as the roots of my same-sex attraction. I became accountable to a ministry leader and began attending and serving in a local church. I was also able to forgive my step-dad, mother and the cousin who molested me.

My journey to wholeness and holiness has not been quick or painless. Many times I stumbled along the way (and I still stumble!), but Father God has always been present. I let go of quick, fleeting counterfeit “love” (lust and sex) and slowly developed true and lasting love through deep meaningful relationships with others and God. Of all my fathers, Father God has been the most faithful and consistent.

He is a father to the fatherless… (and, He is a father to those who were fathered less!) Psalm 68:5
He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow. Deuteronomy 10:18
The victim commits himself to you; you are the helper of the fatherless. Psalm 10:14
The LORD watches over the alien and sustains the fatherless and the widow. Psalm 146:9
He also made them objects of compassion in the presence of all their captors. Psalm 106:46
And I will be a Father to you and you shall be sons and daughters to me. 2 Corinthians 6:8
Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God. 1 John 3:1
For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him. Ps. 103:11

For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake, but my lovingkindness will not be removed from you. Isaiah 54:10
I have loved you with an everlasting love. Therefore, I have drawn you with lovingkindness. Again, I will build you and you shall be rebuilt. Jer. 31:3

Can a woman forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget but I will not forget you. Behold I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands. Your walls are continually before me. Isaiah 49:14-16

Even though I have a biological father and an adopted father, I know that my true father is the “Father to the Fatherless”. I have come to know what it means to have God as my father. Growing up without a healthy father figure hindered my growth into masculinity. Abba Father is continually healing many of these deficits. He has shown Himself as a strong provider, protector and caring dad, who adores me whether I perform or not. As I learn to be loved by Him, I am growing into the man He wants me to be. As Abba lavishly meets my needs for love and acceptance, I am able to love Him and others correctly and abundantly. My desire is that all of my holiness, giving, serving, loving and sharing flows from this supply of limitless love and acceptance, for I am beloved. I have learned to rely on God when I could rely on no one else. He has shown me, through promises in His Word and through my experiences with Him, that He is faithful. As I step out in faith, trusting His promises, I have seen that He will encourage me, equip me, protect me, provide for me, and bless my efforts.

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived, neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, not adulterers, nor those who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you, but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:9

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The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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Report on 2015 NEA Expo Ex-Gay Educators’ Caucus

This year the NEA Convention was held in Orlando, Florida, July 1-6. Dr. Paul Sullins, Department of Sociology, The Catholic University of America, was our caucus’ special guest. He is a devoted scholar and researcher in the field of social sciences and very capable of handling the hard core statistical challenges faced by visitors to our NEA EXPO booth. He was also very effective at drawing passers-by into discussions about many aspects of human sexuality, including his recent research on same sex parenting. I would encourage you to check out his research on-line.

Most encounters at our exhibit booth were at least civil and some were very supportive. There were a few hostile encounters, too. After reading the title of our caucus (NEA EXGAY EDUCATORS CAUCUS), one man walked right up and shaking his finger in my face said, “You are damaging children. Shame on you!” He talked over my comment that I support his right to have another opinion. Obviously the good will was not reciprocated!

When asked by Dr. Sullins if he knew what an Exgay was, another man walked by without even slowing his pace and said, “They don’t exist.”

A couple approached the booth and the husband, a school counselor, I believe, got into a heavy discussion of the research. When his wife had a turn, she explained how she believes adolescents need to experiment with sexuality to see which direction feels right to them. I interjected, “Do you believe a person finds out who they are by consulting their feelings?” She said, “No,” and went on to embellish her previous position but was obviously distracted by my question and her body language told me she was recognizing that perhaps she was saying that feelings tell you who you are. When she finished, I said, “Do you think it’s OK if a person wants other parts of them, like their goals to have a family, or their faith, to be a more important source than feelings to tell them who they are?” With a look of genuine discovery on her face, she said, “That’s a new thought!”

Another young man came to express his views more than listen to anything we had to say. His comment that stuck in my mind was, “I believe there should be a law against a physician writing a baby’s gender on their birth certificate because they’re too young to know what they want to be.”

During a lull in the traffic, a man from Cameroon expressed his desire to see polygamy accepted in America. In his Muslim country, he said it is very frustrating and sad when his countrymen came to this country to avoid the dangerous hostility of the Muslim extremists to have to choose one of their 4 wives to bring along and leave the other 3 in danger. He repeated several times that not all Muslims are terrorists. I asked him what he thinks might happen to the homosexuals in the US if Sharia law gains more influence. His reply, “They will put an end to that.” He didn’t say how.

Some conversations lead to topics of religion and freedom of religion. Many were able to concede that it is OK for a person to make their religion a priority over their sexuality but most were also quick to add, “But it’s not OK to make someone feel forced to do so!” Many were suspicious that we were prompting religion and religious tradition on this issue. There were also a few who wanted our information to be fair in presenting all sides of the issue and a few who openly identified as Christians. Although we were open to taking conversations into the spiritual aspects of this issue, most conversations centered around sharing of little known research information and discussions of freedom on the issue.

At the representative assembly, the delegates voted on some troublesome things this year. Right off the bat, the first item put to the vote by NEA leadership in complete denial of recent punitive rulings against Christians, was to use NEA resources to fight “bogus” religious liberty laws that might make discrimination and hatred against LGBT people more entrenched. They also voted to revise history books to make them more “relevant.” Another item (NBI #84) attacks the use of the words, “right to work!” There were several transgender supportive business items that passed including allowing children to dress as boys or girls or use whatever restrooms they wished. Many items were disturbing, but this one submitted by vote of state delegations pushed my buttons: (New Business Item 86) “NEA will disseminate to educators through existing publications current information regarding the methods and damaging effects of anti-gay “conversion/reparative therapies”. This was debated and re-worded to tone it down. The item initially supported legislation to make it illegal for counselors to attempt to help a young person with unwanted same sex attraction. During the debate, a delegate raised the question, “Is it the intent of this item to do away with the NEA EXGAY EDUCATORS CAUCUS?” The author replied, “Absolutely not!” I find it interesting that although NEA included the category “Q” (defined by them as “QUESTIONING” as in NBI 78) in decisions supportive of LGBTQ individuals, they also voted to limit the freedom and resources for those who are questioning their sexuality in NBI 86! To view more of the 2015 NEA decisions, go to This will give you a list of all the items that passed and full coverage of the 2015 Representative Assembly.

Jeralee Smith
Founder, NEA Ex-Gay Educators Caucus

The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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Homosexuality 101

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Given the controversy over the homosexual issue in recent years and previous experiences of tense interactions at NEA’s Annual Meeting and EXPO over the past 10 years, I was anticipating a rough 2 days at this year’s NEA EXPO in Denver. I knew I would be alone at the exhibit for periods of time as my only other help, Sissy Jochmann (Chair of the Conservative Educators Caucus) needed to fulfill other responsibilities in addition to assisting me at the EX-GAY EDUCATORS’ EXHIBIT. I was happily wrong!

When I arrived to set up the exhibit on Monday, I found our assigned spot in the back corner. The backdrop curtain was wrapped around a high railing and our “NEA EX-GAY EDUCATORS’ CAUCUS” sign was entangled in the curtain hanging by one hook. A rack of clothing belonging to the dress shop exhibit next to me blocked the view of our exhibit from anyone walking down the isle. I climbed up on a chair to unravel the curtain but could not reach high enough to re-hang our sign. A young man who working as a convention staff offered to help. He finished with a hearty, “God bless you!” My anticipation began to change.

We had a wide choice of materials to share, thanks to PFOX, Dr. Ramey, Rosaria Butterfield, and others. Our materials addressed bullying in schools; children being raised in same sex homes; health concerns of homosexuals; results of research studies; and other related issues.

During the next two days, teachers trickled by our exhibit, most with expressions of puzzlement and some with disgust. A few stopped to talk about the issue. The question was usually, “So what is an ‘Exgay?’” Our answer, “A person with unwanted same gender attractions who does not want to embrace a homosexual identity. Here are the personal stories and research which support our viewpoint.” I would usually make it more personal making sure the person knew this was my own history. Conversation rarely went deeper than that. People would pick up a few items, especially “EXGAY IS OK” buttons or bookmarks and perhaps a few brochures or research articles. A few returned to purchase Rosaria Butterfield’s book, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert.

The conversations that made our efforts seem worthwhile were few but important. Several openly gay people came by to respectfully engage discussion of recent events such as John Paulk’s article in Politico, “From Gay to Straight and Back,” or the dissolution of Exodus. Such conversations always attracted a group of listeners. We affirmed the right of people to make those choices but said, “We are here to stand for the right of individuals with unwanted same gender attraction to pursue other avenues besides embracing a homosexual identity and way of life. We are not here to coerce anyone to make changes they don’t want to make.” I also was able to explain that the caucus was founded when I realized that I could be forced to teach something on this issue that was contrary to my own personal experience. We also pointed out to several that CA and NJ now have laws that prohibit mental health professionals from assisting youth to resolve their same gender attraction issues in any other way than by embracing homosexuality and we believe that is a violation of our right to pursue happiness. Many were surprised that such laws exist and seemed to agree that it infringes on freedom, even when they disagreed with our views.

We had a libertarian teacher stop by to ask if we had an exhibit last year. He had missed us and was in the habit of stopping by for any new info. He affirmed our right to be there and was supportive of our theme of personal freedom.

After a group of people walked by, a convention staff young woman stopped and asked, “Tell me about this.” Before I could get out a complete sentence, she said, “That’s me.” I replied, “It was me, too.” As I explained a bit more, she listened briefly appearing to be cautious to avoid being seen at our booth. She took some resources and promised to watch the online video by FAMILY WATCH INTERNATIONAL and slipped away as she said, “I think God is talking to me.”

All of these conversations which had a measure of reasonableness to them, were well worth the effort and expense of being there. By placing ourselves in the pathway of people who have opposing views, we are showing that we are real people representing a view that is not malicious to personal freedom but rather dignifies individual choice. It is very important that we hold the place we have carved out inside the NEA in future years as long as we are able. We deeply appreciate the support of the many individual and groups who have provided us with materials and moral support through the years. And we welcome participation at future exhibits by anyone who feels the calling to be there or feels impressed to help financially.

Thank you

Jeralee Smith
July 21, 2014

The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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Understanding Same-sex Attraction

This documentary is an eye-opening experience for many as it presents clear evidence showing that no one is “born gay” and that many people with unwanted same-sex attraction have been able to change. We summarize the research data, include interviews with top experts in the field, and present powerful testimonials from four men who speak honestly, openly and compellingly about what it was like for them to develop same-sex attraction and live the homosexual lifestyle. They then discuss their experiences with therapy that helped them to develop a healthy heterosexual sexual orientation.

In conjunction with the release of this video, we are also releasing our extensive new policy brief, Laws Banning Sexual Orientation Change Therapy are Harmful and Violate Fundamental Human Rights.

Our new documentary and policy brief together are very timely. More and more people are confused because of misinformation regarding homosexuality, and they believe the “born that way” (and can’t change) myth. Increasingly, the rights of those who seek change therapy (also known as sexual orientation change therapy or SOCE) are violated, as laws are being enacted to ban it.

This information comes from Family Watch International.

The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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NEA Representative Assembly Report 2013- Unsafe Schools

The NEA Annual Meeting and Representative Assembly was held this year in Atlanta, Georgia, June 26- July 6. In reporting, I choose to focus on an alarming NEA action taken at the convention and hence the title to this report (Unsafe Schools). New Business Item 30, which delegates narrowly passed, to which I spoke in opposition, was the issue of great concern:

NBI 30- “NEA will encourage all states and NEA Affiliates to use existing means of communication to promote developmentally appropriate instructional resources in order to help all educators integrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) history, people, and issues into their instruction such as, but not limited to “Unheard Voices” an oral history and curriculum project for middle and high school students created in collaboration by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) and Story Corps.”

On the surface this New Business Item may seem harmless, but if you investigate the website and look at the curriculum, “Unheard Voices,” an alarm for the safety of our students should sound. Let me give an example and direct quote from the curriculum itself which I presented to the NEA delegation:

After listening to an interview of transgender, Jamison Green, who transitioned from female to male in 1988, the classroom discussion (not in a book brought home) questions include: “When someone suggested to Green that he might be transsexual, he says he ‘reacted in complete horror.’ Why do you think he was so scared? What messages had he received growing up that made him afraid to even explore transitioning? What messages have you received (from family, friends, media, school, places of worship) about transgender people?”

This curriculum is for 6th through 12th graders. I personally teach 6, 7, and 8th grade. Children are so impressionable and already have confusion about sexual issues from media and other sources. Introduction of material like this would be devastating. Take Massachusetts, for example, where this type of curriculum was introduced after same-sex marriage was legalized. A recent Massachusetts survey, Massachusetts Youth Risk Behavior Survey, completed by high school students across that state, reveals that students identifying as gay and who had same-sex contact rose by approximately 50% from 2005 to 2009. Now transgender, changing one’s gender, is being introduced.

Why should our children have to deal with this type of curriculum? If you listen to the interviews in the “Unheard Voices” curriculum, you can plainly see that the suggestion and encouragement of others played a great role in the individuals’ transitioning. This curriculum only encourages gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender action and mentions no risks; but there are risks to physical health and mental health.
(1) Rigorous studies demonstrate that sexuality in adolescents is fluid and that most adolescents who initially experience same-sex attraction, or are sexually confused, no longer experience such attractions by age 25.
(2) New Business Items passed by the delegates at the NEA Convention are directives for the NEA to take their monies to enact the approved new business item. Since this New Business Item was ratified, teachers and parents, please become knowledgeable of this attack on our children.

(2) National Health and Social Life Survey (1994) in. E.O. Laumann et al, The Social Organization of Sexuality: Sexual Practices in the United States. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, pp. 292-296.

No NEA Ex-Gay Caucus Expo Booth This Year

After securing an NEA Ex-Gay Caucus booth for the NEA Expo in Atlanta on April 22, 2013, I received a notice from CEPI (Conventions-Exhibits-Promotions-Inc.), Expo organizers, June 13, 2013, that my booth confirmation had been revoked as we no longer had NEA caucus status.

I quickly contacted NEA, as I had heard nothing to this effect from them. I was informed that, “Yes, the information I had been given by CEPI was correct.” (This surprised me as we have had status for the past nine years.) I was told that January 26, 2011, an email had been sent to all caucus chairs requiring a response that would “grandfather in” the caucus before new rules went into effect. I had changed my email address August 7, 2009, and consequently did not receive the email. By the way, this was the first and only caucus email I had been sent by NEA in my eight years of being caucus chair. My next step, I was told, was to re-file for caucus status. New rules require 25 NEA members and updated caucus information. Since I only found out we were not a recognized caucus on June 13, 2013, I was told it would be impossible to have an Expo booth this year because we needed committee approval and their earliest meeting date would be in September.

If you are an NEA member and you support what the Ex-Gay Caucus stands for, please consider joining. Caucus members do not need to be ex-gay themselves, but must support the beliefs offered by the caucus and explained on this website. The mission of a caucus is to make change within the NEA. Please feel free to email with any questions:

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Halvorson


The views expressed in this document are those of the caucus. The caucus has no authority to speak for, or act on behalf of, the NEA.

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“Gender Confusion Training” and the 2012 NEA Rep. Assembly, Wash. DC

Washington, D.C. was the site of the NEA Representative Assembly this year. More than 8,000 delegates from around the nation met from June 28- July 5, 2012, to attend trainings and to do the business of the union. NEA leadership reported that NEA has lost many members this year and that the budget will need to be cut by $65 million.

At the Joint Conference on Concerns of Minorities and Women, held prior to the Representative Assembly, I attended a session entitled “Drawing Connections: Exploring the Intersections of Race, Gender & Sexual Orientation.” This teacher training had as two of its key objectives: 1.) to review the concepts of gender, race, and sexual orientation within the social justice framework 2.) to pursue strategies and resources to address diversity and the “whole student.” The portion I want to discuss here is, according to this training, seeds of doubt could be planted in children’s minds as to what gender they are. Are they a boy trapped in a girl’s body, etc.? This is very concerning to me. Except in a very small number of cases, individuals are born clearly either male or female. As we listen to this issue being discussed in the public arena, we are beginning to see T.V. shows, and also articles in magazines, about transgender issues and how sex-reassignment surgery is a viable option.

Along the same lines, a New Business Item was introduced and passed on the floor of the Representative Assembly which stated, “NEA will re-affirm its commitment to our proud legacy of promoting social justice and equality of educational opportunity for every student, and professional status for every teacher and Education Support Professional by: NEA shall also address in a special dialogue the unique issues of LGBTQ students and educators and make recommendations.” My concern, which I stated on the floor of the assembly, was this: “Is this going to include training and material for our children commensurate with the NEA trainings I have experienced, which glorified cross-dressing and put seeds of doubt in minds as to what gender someone is?” I will be following this very closely to see what action, if any, is being taken in the schools.

This year at our NEA Ex-gay Educators’ Caucus booth at the NEA Expo, Greg Quinlan and Denise Shick were guests. Greg, a former homosexual who has been out of the lifestyle for 20 years, was able to share his story and talk with many booth visitors. Denise Shick shared her heart-wrenching story of growing up in a home where her father demonstrated gender confusion and eventually had sex-reassignment surgery (changing from a man to a woman). The agony, confusion and pain it caused culminated in her father writing a poem at the end of his life. In his poem, he expressed his feelings of loss and despair at thinking the change would be fulfilling, only to find out it left him empty. The last three lines of his poem were, “Where am I? Who am I? All is loss.” Denise Shick is a compassionate individual who has now begun a ministry for families going through similar, agonizing experiences. I would encourage you to visit her website: and to read her book My Daddy’s Secret.

Gender Confusion. My heart is heavy. God help us.

Respectfully submitted,

Susan Halvorson
NEA Ex-gay Educators’ Caucus, Chair

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