Upstate Lawmaker Introduced A New Bill Banning Gay Conversion Therapy, Named It After Mike Pence

An Upstate county lawmaker in New York is more or less trolling Mike Pence with the name for a new bill banning gay “conversion therapy” for young LGBTQ people.

Patrick B. Burke has been trying for two years to get legislation passed outlawing gay conversion therapy. And he’s finally found someone who might help him get it done: the man himself, VP-elect Mike Pence.

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In a low-key nod to the anti-LGBTQ views of Vice President-elect Mike Pence, it’s called the Prevention of Emotional Neglect and Childhood Endangerment bill ― or PENCE.

It’s no secret Pence is the last man you’d want as your father if you were gay. He gave a speech in which he said that marriage equality would lead to “societal collapse,” and called homosexuality “a choice.” Stopping gays from marrying wasn’t biased, he said, but was rather about compelling “God’s idea.” He also passed a bill in Indiana which allowed business owners to deny service to LGBT based on their religious beliefs.

So yeah, Pence is for sure the guy to troll for the law banning mental and painful gay conversion therapy, which he too supports.

Burke noted, “I had some, maybe a few folks who were maybe a little upset about the acronym and thought I was just trying to be cute, but no. These are serious times that we live in.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) signed an executive order in February precluding insurance companies in the state from covering conversion therapy. At the same time, a bill to ban the practice altogether has stalled in the Republican-controlled New York State Senate.

Five states have already banned conversion therapy:  California, Oregon, Illinois, Vermont and New Jersey.

The Trump administration transition team did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the PENCE bill, but New York sure has.


Two Buttons Deep is a news & entertainment website based in Upstate, New York.

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