What is AB 2943?
AB 2943 prohibits individuals, whether a pastor, clergy, or licensed therapist, from: advertising sexual orientation change efforts, offering to engage in sexual orientation change efforts, and engaging in sexual orientation change efforts.
Under this bill, a person, an organization, including a church who is paid for goods or services cannot engage in any practice-including pure speech-that tells someone that they can overcome unwanted same-sex attraction or gender identity confusion.
Contrary to what proponents are claiming, AB 2943 bans the sale of books expressing Christian beliefs about sexual morality. It includes anyone who speaks or offers a book with regards to advertisement. Some examples of the books that would be banned under this legislation include: When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Movement, By God's Design: Overcoming Same Sex Attraction, and The Complete Christian Guide to Understanding Homosexuality.
Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) states, "At its core, AB 2943 outlaws speech, whether offered by a licensed counselor, a best-selling author, or even a minister or religious leader. It targets a specific message-that an adult who is experiencing unwanted same-sex attraction or gender identity confusion can find help to address those issues-for censorship. The breadth of this censorship is staggering. "
ADF goes on to say that under AB 2943:
- A licensed counselor could not help a married mother of three who is experiencing unwanted attraction to a close female friend or confusion over her gender identity overcome those feelings;
- A religious ministry could not hold a conference on maintaining sexual purity if the conference encourages attendees to avoid homosexual behavior;
- A bookstore (including online bookstores like Amazon) could not sell many recently published books challenging gender identity ideology and advocating that these beliefs should be rejected by society; and
- A pastor paid to speak at an event addressing current social topics could not encourage attendees that they can prevail over same-sex desires or feelings that they were born the wrong sex.