fact checking is a foreign concept…

August 4, 2008

To the Editor: I am writing in response to James Phelan’s advice column (August 4) addressing parents whose children disclose that they are gay, lesbian or bisexual.

Phelan states that the World Health Organization considers homosexuality to be a mental disorder.

This is not true. Homosexuality is NOT considered a mental illness or disorder by any reputable professional organization involved in the study and practice of mental health anywhere in the world. The World Health Organization revised its policy stance in 1993 to reflect the findings of decades of considerable research and debate on this topic.

In fact, these kinds of factual errors are very common in the Gleaner, and yet there is no evidence that anything is being done to acknowledge and correct the misinformation, or to put in greater quality controls. At the very least, it would be useful if the editors did adequate fact-checking, so that the public is not being wilfully misinformed by persons using old or patently biased information to make their claims.

Sincerely, Long Bench


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