By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com May 11 2010 5:05 PM ET
George A. Rekers has resigned his membership in the "ex-gay"
advocacy group National Association for Research and Therapy of
Homosexuality after reports surfaced last week that he had hired a
young male escort during a recent European trip.
In a statement posted on the organization’s website late Tuesday, Rekers said the resignation was necessary to "allow myself the time necessary to fight the false media reports that have been made against me.
"With the assistance of a defamation attorney, I will fight these false reports because I have not engaged in any homosexual behavior whatsoever," Rekers said. "I am not gay and never have been."
It's unclear whether Rekers resigned voluntarily, or was pressured to do so by the group, which purports to conduct scientific research on therapeutic treatment for individuals with “unwanted homosexual attraction.” A NARTH spokesman could not be reached for comment.
In the same statement NARTH officials said they had accepted Rekers’s resignation but defended the group’s mission, which has been condemned by professional organizations including the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association.
“We express our sincere sympathy to all individuals, regardless of their perspective, who have been injured by these events,” officials said in the statement. “We also wish to reiterate our traditional position that these personal controversies do not change the scientific data, nor do they detract from the important work of NARTH. NARTH continues to support scientific research, and to value client autonomy, client self-determination and client diversity.”
A NARTH spokesman could not be reached for comment.