This story happened two years ago in South Africa, but I only came across it yesterday. It is a tragic and heart breaking account of three boys who were deemed “effeminate” and thereby gay by their parents and sent to a bush camp to be toughened up and turned into “men.”
Here is a picture of Raymond Buys, who was just 15 years of age, after his ordeal where he was starved, tortured and left fighting for his life. When he arrived at the hospital, Raymond was a skeletal and emaciated figure, dehydrated, his arm broken in two places and burns and wounds all over his body. Four weeks later he died.
He was in perfect health before he endured the brutality of a ten week Wild Game Rangers training course. Raymond had learning difficulties and when he spilled detergent, ‘General’ Alex De Koker, 49, the leader, made Raymond swallow it. A fellow camper told the court that Raymond ‘foamed at the mouth.’
Parents have paid the equivalent of $2,400 USD or 1,900 Euros, probably unaware that three teens have paid the price with their lives. The adults facing charges in a South African court is a “General” a title he gave himself, but in reality he is a pathetic human being name Alex De Koker, 49 and his accomplice Michael Erasmus 20. They are on trial for murder, child abuse and neglect and doing grievous bodily harm that caused Raymond Buys death.
A 19-year-old boy who shared the tent with Raymond told a court of sadistic torture and the forcing of Raymond to eat his own faeces. He was chained nightly to his bed and forbidden to use the toilet.
The ignorance of Alex De Koker and others (including certain Christian denominations) with regard to ‘de-programming nature, i.e. ‘curing homosexuality,’goes against the professional knowledge of many medical organizations.
What do the experts say about ex-gay therapy? Every respected medical and mental health organization say that attempts to change sexual orientation are unlikely to work and can be harmful. The American Academy of Pediatrics, The American Counseling Association, The American Psychological Association, National Association of Social Workers, The American Psychiatric Association all soundly rejected the idea that homosexuality is a mental illness that can or should be cured. The American Psychiatric Association says that, “The potential risks of “reparative therapy” are great, including depression, anxiety and self-destructive behavior, since therapist alignment with societal prejudices against homosexuality may reinforce self-hatred already experienced by the patient.” The American Psychological Association says that, “For over three decades the consensus of the mental health community has been that homosexuality is not an illness and therefore not in need of a cure. The APA’ concern about the position’ espoused by NORTH and so-called conversation therapy is that they are not supported by the science. There is simply no sufficiently scientifically sound evidence that sexual orientation can be changed.” Raymond, Rest in Peace.