FORT WORTH, Texas, June 6 (UPI) -- The Republican party of Texas has toned down anti-LGBT rhetoric in the party platform, replacing outright condemnation with a softer endorsement of the "value" of reparative therapy.
The "reparative therapy," alluded to in the newly-unveiled party platform, is the controversial process of subjecting a homosexual to clinical and psychological treatment with the goal of "turning" the patient heterosexual.
"We recognize the legitimacy and value of counseling which offers reparative therapy and treatment to patients who are seeking escape from the homosexual lifestyle," the platform reads.
"Homosexuality must not be presented as an acceptable alternative lifestyle, in public policy, nor should family be redefined to include homosexual couples. We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin. Additionally, we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction, or belief in traditional values. We recognize the legitimacy and value of counseling which offers reparative therapy and treatment to patients who are seeking escape from the homosexual lifestyle. No laws or executive orders shall be imposed to limit or restrict access to this type of therapy."
It is illegal to subject children to so-called "reparative" therapy in New Jersey and California, as those states say it constitutes child abuse.
While still extreme by traditional standards, the new language is significantly less incendiary than the previous platform, which condemned the LGBT community on both historic and religious grounds.
"We affirm that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of our society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit. Homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God, recognized by our country's founders and shared by the majority ..."