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Converting From ‘Conversion’

For two decades, McKrae Game operated a faith-based conversion therapy program designed to “cure” gays and lesbians. Now he has come out as gay — and is apologizing for the damage he caused.

“It’s all in my past, but many, way TOO MANY continue believing that there is something wrong with themselves and wrong with people that choose to live their lives honestly and open as gay, lesbian, trans, etc.,” Game wrote on a Facebook post. “The very harmful cycle of self shame and condemnation has to stop.”

Game, 51, founded the Hope for Wholeness Network in South Carolina, touting the goal of “freedom from homosexuality through Jesus Christ.” In June, almost two years after being fired from the organization, Game announced he was gay. In his post, he said all conversion therapy programs should be closed

“I was a religious zealot that hurt people,” Game told The Washington Post. “People said they attempted suicide over me and the things I said to them. People, I know, are in therapy because of me. Why would I want that to continue?”

Dorian, We Will You to Be Gone!

Not that Marianne Williamson ever had more than a gnat’s chance of getting the Democratic presidential nomination, but she can now formally kiss her presidential hopes goodbye. The author, lecturer and activist drew plaudits in early Democratic debates for her articulate and assertive appraisal of America’s woes. But then ...

She posted a tweet Wednesday invoking the “power of the mind” to make Hurricane Dorian stay away from U.S. shores. “The Bahamas, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas ... may all be in our prayers now. Millions of us seeing Dorian turn away from land is not a wacky idea; it is a creative use of the power of the mind. Two minutes of prayer, visualization, meditation for those in the way of the storm,” the tweet said. It was quickly deleted, but not before it was copied and recirculated thousands of times.

Suddenly, a Sharpie-wielding Donald Trump is looking downright stable in comparison.

First Amendment Win

A judge has blocked the White House from revoking a Playboy correspondent’s press pass after a Rose Garden spat earlier this year. Playboy reporter Brian Karem got into a loud argument with former White House aide and right-wing provocateur Sebastian Gorka.

The reporter’s action might not have been a picture of professionalism, but as U.S. District Court Judge Rudolph Contreras pointed out in his ruling, the event itself was “unruly” and full of “jocular insults.” No one else was disciplined the way Karem was, he noted.

Score one for the First Amendment.

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Riddikulus!

Even the youngest Harry Potter fans tend to understand that the wizardry in the book series is fictional fun. But one Tennessee priest doesn’t get it. His Nashville Catholic school has pulled Potter books from its shelves on grounds that “the curses and spells used in the books are actual curses and spells” that “risk conjuring evil spirits.”

According to an email obtained by The Tennessean newspaper, the Rev. Dan Reehil claims he decided to remove the popular books after consulting exorcists.

J.K. Rowling’s series, which spawned a huge global following and a blockbuster movie franchise, charts the adventures of young wizards in a fictional hidden world of magic, where good battles (and ultimately defeats) evil.

That apparently isn’t good enough for Rev. Reehil. “These books present magic as both good and evil, which is not true, but in fact a clever deception,” he wrote. Way to bring the church into the modern era.

Oil Barons Over a Barrel?

For the first time since 1925, the top 10 listings in the Standard & Poor’s top 500 companies lacks any mention of ExxonMobil or its predecessors. ExxonMobil slid to the No. 12 spot, outperformed by companies like Microsoft, Apple and Amazon. If you detect a pattern here, that’s because there’s a pattern here.

Big Oil, once the seemingly unstoppable behemoth in an oil-dependent world, has been supplanted largely by Big Tech. ExxonMobil has hardly fallen on hard times, but the oil sector is definitely losing its luster as the world economy decouples from petroleum products and investors worry increasingly about the risks posed by a business model that, by its very nature, works to the detriment of efforts to fight global warming.

ExxonMobil executives no doubt are heaving a collective, ho-hum yawn of unconcern. Oil will remain king as long as gas-guzzling cars, trucks, planes and ships still dominate the world transportation network.

Expensive Lessons

The Trump administration has shown from the start that it has contempt for education, vulnerable citizens and anything that former President Barack Obama ever did in office. So it makes perfect sense his White House would move to make it harder for students who were defrauded by colleges to get their school loans forgiven, gutting reforms that Obama had extended.

At issue is a law, passed in 1995 and strengthened by the Obama administration, that gives the federal Department of Education authority to cancel federal debts of students whose colleges misled them about issues like job-placement rates. The law was used mostly by students who’d been ripped off by for-profit universities like the one that used to carry Donald Trump’s name.

Under a rewrite the Trump administration is pushing through, proving fraud will be harder for the students, resulting in what the government predicts will be $11 billion over 10 years in “savings” for the government — meaning, money for likely fraudulent college degrees that grads will have to pay for anyway.

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