Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann and her husband, Marcus (who's been accused of offering "reparative" therapy to gay patients at the Bachmanns' Christian clinic), have pointed to the testimony of one particular friend as proof that it's possible to leave the gay "lifestyle," Slate reports.
This friend, Janet Boynes, is devoting her life to the proposition that homosexuality is not only destructive but also, in some sense, contagious. She calls herself an "ex-lesbian," and she's written a memoir about her journey:
In 2005, Marcus Bachmann gave a talk called "The Truth to the Homosexual Lifestyle" at the Minnesota Pastors' Summit, and, according to attendee Curt Prins, Boynes was part of the presentation. Prins, a gay tech marketer who attended the conference to gather intelligence on "the other side," recalls Boynes, a long-haired woman with striking features, putting up a "before" photo of herself as a lesbian, with short hair and mannish clothes. The contrast prompted gasps and laughter from the audience. More recently, in her 2008 memoir, Called Out: A Former Lesbian's Discovery of Freedom, Boynes thanked "Marcus and Michele," saying "you never left my side when things got tough." For his part, Marcus Bachmann has since been selling the book in the lobby of his clinic alongside a typed placard saying "Janet is a friend," according to this photograph taken by an undercover gay activist.
The Bachmanns and their political team have put a lot of stock in this woman's story. They better pray hard that the "after" lifestyle lasts through 2012.
Read more at Slate.
In other news: VIDEO: Racially Stereotyped Vagina Hand Ads.