Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By John Jalsevac

3/11/2008 (7 years ago)

LifeSiteNews (www.lifesitenews.com)

"What many who are struggling with homosexuality don't realize, and seldom hear, is that they can change. I should know - for 13 years, I used to be one."

Highlights

By John Jalsevac

LifeSiteNews (www.lifesitenews.com)

3/11/2008 (7 years ago)

Published in Americas


SUDBURY, ON (LifeSiteNews) - Canadian Television (CTV) has pulled an ad that claims it is possible to leave the homosexual lifestyle, sponsored by a Christian advocacy group, Life Productions, after the station received numerous complaints from pro-homosexual activists.

The 30-second spot is narrated by John Westcott, the founder of Exchange ministries, an organization that seeks to help practicing homosexuals who wish to leave the lifestyle. Westcott is himself a former homosexual, as is his wife Amanda.

"You hear a lot about gay rights, gay marriage and the gay lifestyle being taught in our public schools for children," says Westcott in the ad, "but what many people don't realize, and seldom hear, is that many homosexuals don't want to be homosexual.

What many who are struggling with homosexuality don't realize, and seldom hear, is that they can change. I should know - for 13 years, I used to be one." Wescott then walks off the camera and an announcer says, "This message has been brought to you by Life Productions."

The ad ran for three days on a local CTV station in Sudbury Ontario, before it was pulled on March 3. Life Productions had intended to run the ad locally for an entire year.

Pro-Homosexual advocates, however, were enraged by the ad, calling it "hate" material, and deluged the television station and Life Productions with letters of complaint. A Facebook group against the ad was set up, entitled "Appalled with CTV Commercial - Homosexuality Cure??"

Dr. Joel Dickinson, a faculty member at Laurentian University, led the charge, setting up and acting as an officer of the Facebook group, and corresponding with CTV personnel. LifeSiteNews.com attempted to interview Dr. Dickinson, but she responded that she was unable to fit the interview into her schedule.

At the time of the writing of this article, the facebook group had 1,172 members.

On March 6, Dickenson received a letter from CTV's Vice-President of Public Affairs, Sarah Crawford. Crawford apologized to Dickenson on behalf of CTV, saying that the fact that the ad was ever aired was a result of "human error."

"I assure you," said Crawford, "that had CTV known the content of the ad, it would not have gone to air." Crawford told Dickenson that the ad had been screened by Telecaster Services, the voluntary, self-governing, commercial, infomercial and public service announcement (PSA) clearance committee that is required to review all ads in Canada prior to airing. Telecaster had approved the ad, although it had "flagged" it and given it a "mature" rating, thereby ensuring that it could not be aired prior to 9:00pm.

Crawford said that CTV failed to notice the "flag" on the ad, and did not review its content. "As a result, CTV Sudbury scheduled the ad without knowing that it contained problematic material that is inappropriate and unacceptable for our stations. The ad went to air, and consequently we received some complaints. Station personnel then reviewed the ad, deemed it inappropriate for telecast and immediately pulled it off the air."

Other than a general statement that CTV does not promote discrimination and is in favor of diversity, Crawford did not explicitly state what the "problematic" or "discriminatory" part of the ad was, nor what required that it be rated "mature."

"It is our corporate policy not to air advocacy ads of this nature," concluded Crawford. "Moreover, CTV television stations do not condone, promote or engage in discrimination against anyone based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status or physical or mental disability. We have a proud history of promoting diversity and building bridges of understanding between cultures both within our company and the communities in which we operate."

Scott Henderson, CTV's vice-president of communications, also responded to complaints about the ad, saying, "We did try to act as quickly as possible on this. It was something that was taken very seriously at the highest levels of CTV. It's completely against all of our own codes."

LifeSiteNews.com spoke to the director of Life Productions, Jason Johns, about the ad. He expressed his disappointment that the ad was pulled, especially on charges of "discrimination" or "hate".

"The commercial doesn't promote hate. It doesn't promote discrimination. It promotes knowledge, and information," Johns told LifeSiteNews. "And in no way did we attack the pro-gay advocates. What we were doing was reaching out to, and educating people that there is a community of people who practice homosexuality that are not interested in practicing homosexuality, in that they want help."

The idea that homosexuality is an inborn condition is one of the central doctrines of the pro-homosexual movement. However, there has been no scientific evidence to support this theory, and, Johns pointed out, the fact that there are hosts of men and women, such as John Westcott and his wife, claiming to be former homosexuals offers concrete evidence that homosexuality can, indeed, be treated.

Johns argued that it is ironic that CTV cited "discrimination" as the reason that the ad was pulled, since in pulling the ad CTV in fact discriminated both against Life Productions, and against those homosexuals who wish to leave the lifestyle, by revoking their freedom of speech.

"What about these people who want help, who the commercial was actually for?" he said. "I'm concerned about our freedom of speech as well. But we're not necessarily in the same position that these people who want help, and who are really hurting, and who are struggling with this, and who are reaching out for help. If our freedom of speech is jeopardized, if it's taken away, then who can advocate for these people? According to the pro-gay activists, no one is allowed to advocate for them. And I think that that's where the real dictatorship and discrimination comes in."

Johns also said that it is ironic that his group is being convinced of hatred. "They accuse us of hating, they accuse us of being haters, and discrimination. That's just not true. We retain the e-mails that they do send us, because that's evidence of where the real hatred and where the real discrimination exists," he said.

Johns said that Life Productions has received so much hate mail of such a violent nature from homosexual activists that he is unwilling to disclose the physical location of the organization, since he and others involved in the group are concerned for the safety of their families.

Johns expressed his belief that the violent antipathy towards the idea that homosexuality may be an alterable condition on the part of homosexuals generates a hostile environment for those in the homosexual community who may desire to leave the lifestyle.

"There's a lot of fear and a lot of intimidation imposed by the pro-gay community, that I would think that anyone who claims to be homosexual and wants to get help, I think that in that sort of environment they would not feel comfortable voicing their opinion or their concern because of the response that they would get."

Life Productions' ad, said Johns, was intended simply to encourage those who are dissatisfied with the homosexual lifestyle to seek the help that they desire. Life Productions itself does not perform counseling for homosexuality, but refers homosexuals who desire to be treated to other organizations that perform such counseling.

---

LifeSiteNews.com is a non-profit Internet service dedicated to issues of culture, life, and family. It was launched in September 1997. LifeSiteNews Daily News reports and information pages are used by numerous organizations and publications, educators, professionals and political, religious and life and family organization leaders and grassroots people across North America and internationally.



Comments


More Americas

Rare video shows 'successful' exorcism on woman 'possessed by devil' Watch

Image of Laura was described by locals as

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A 22-year-old woman, only identified as Laura, was reportedly a good girl before the devil turned her bad, according to Argentina locals. In this disturbing footage, Laura is seen writhing in pain, screaming as Bishop Manuel Acuna performs an exorcism on her. LOS ... continue reading


Magical Chilean hotel straight from 'The Hobbit:' features living wall, waterfall Watch

Image of The hotel, completely made out of wood and stone, is located under the majestic Andes Mountain range, the unique hotel is right in the middle of one of the most valued, as well as endangered regions in the world.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Montana Magica Lodge, located in the middle of the southern Andes is something straight from "The Hobbit." It is a literal "Magic Mountain." There is a manmade volcano with a stunning waterfall cascading down its side. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Falling to progress, the beautiful Lake Nicaragua will be compromised by artificial canal Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A massive, fabricated canal, headed by the Hong Kong-based consortium HK Nicaragua Canal Development Investment Company, or HKND is set to undergo construction. The $50 billion project, called the Nicaragua Canal, or the Nicaragua Grand Canal and Inter-oceanic ... continue reading


Mummified bodies of two climbers missing for 55 years believed found Watch

Image of Local officials are confident that the cadavers correspond to two of three Mexicans who went missing after an avalanche 55 years ago.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

At 18,000 feet, Pico de Orizaba in Mexico is the country's highest elevated level. Several climbers have lost their lives trying to scale the mountain. The skeletal remains of two climbers, recently discovered there, are believed to be two of three members of ... continue reading


Villarrica's spectacular eruption: Nature's version of 'fireworks' Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Chile's most active volcano finally erupted, after starting to show signs of seismic disturbance a few days ago. The volcanic activity raised alarm to over 3,300 residents who were evacuated from the small towns of Villarrica, Pucon and Conaripe before the eruption ... continue reading


Beautiful 'Lost City' found in the jungles of Honduras Watch

Image of The

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Archaeologists have finally found the main subject of legends and folklore about "monkey children," a "monkey god" and a "massive source of gold." The city that was left mysteriously by an unidentified civilization hundreds of years ago has been rediscovered in the far ... continue reading


Infamous leader of Knights Templar drug cartel arrested Watch

Image of Servando Gomez, the leader of the Knights Templar drug cartel, was arrested by Mexican authorities. This will deal a critical blow to the deadly group.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A major blow has been dealt to the infamous Knights Templar drug cartel, after Mexican federal police arrested Servando Gomez, the leader of the group, on February 27. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Knights Templar have been operating out of the ... continue reading


SNOW FUN: Eastern Canada inundated by heavy snowfall (PICTURES) Watch

Image of Snow has hammered eastern Canada is some of the heaviest snowfall in years.

By Troy Dredge, Catholic Online

Many residents in eastern Canada have resigned themselves to sitting out this winter. Massive snowfalls have left many prisoners in their homes, snow past windowsills, reaching up to roofs in many parts of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Twice as deadly: Virulent strain of AIDS now plaguing Cuba Watch

Image of A new strain of HIV in Cuba that progresses to AIDS twice as fast has many medical officials worried. Those who contract this form of HIV are left with a much shorter window in which they can seek treatment.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new strain of HIV in Cuba that progresses to AIDS twice as fast has many medical officials worried. Those who contract this form of HIV are left with a much shorter window in which they can seek treatment. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A deadly mix of ... continue reading


VIDEO: Snow doesn't stop Canadian super train in a spectacular video Watch

Image of The track, being completely covered with high snow, the windscreen at the front of the train likewise is also all blocked up. At this point, you'd be hard pressed to guess there was a train approaching.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A spectacular video is making the rounds, and it's just another case of a not-so-little engine that could. A Canadian freight train doesn't shy away from a massive snow bank - and plows straight through it, spreading snow all over the place in a mini-avalanche. ... continue reading


All Americas News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jeremiah 20:10-13
10 I heard so many disparaging me, 'Terror on every ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 18:2-3, 3-4, 5-6, 7
2 Yahweh is my rock and my fortress, my deliverer is ... Read More

Gospel, John 10:31-42
31 The Jews fetched stones to stone him,32 ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for March 27th, 2015 Image

St. Rupert
March 27: Bishop and missionary, also listed as Robert of Hrodbert. A ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter