Led by California and New Jersey, states have begun to ban Sexual Orientation Change Efforts (SOCE) for minors. States have targeted SOCE, also called ‘gay conversion therapy,’ by regulating state licensure requirements for mental health professionals. Conservative legal groups have challenged these bans in federal court, alleging a variety of constitutional violations sounding in the First and Fourteenth Amendments. More specifically, these legal groups propose theories claiming that the bans infringe upon individuals’ freedom of speech, free exercise, and parental rights. In this Note, I survey the history of these bans, as well as court decisions that have rejected constitutional challenges to the laws. This Note then proposes and rejects another potential theory challenging the bans under the Due Process Clause’s right to privacy. Finally, this Note proposes that this new wave of state legislation reflects a wider shift in the LGBT community’s priorities, tactics, and messages.
A Joyful Heart Is Good Medicine: Sexuality Conversion Bans in the Courts,
Mich. J. Gender & L.
Available at: http://repository.law.umich.edu/mjgl/vol21/iss2/3