Ben Carson says without a doubt, homosexuality is a conscious choice people make. And the potential 2016 presidential candidate says you have to look no further than prison culture to reach the same conclusion as him.
Carson made the comments Wendesday morning to CNN’s Chris Cuomo on “New Day” while discussing gay marriage.
“What if people of a state vote for a law, 100-0, that winds up infringing on the rights of a minority?” Cuomo asked. “Like happened very often with slavery, and like many would argue is happening now with people who are gay.”
Carson said that’s a flawed comparison, because “people have no control over their race.”
When asked if he thinks people have control over their sexuality, Carson said “absolutely.”
And then he pulled out the prison sex comparison to try to make his point.
“Because a lot of people who go into prison go into prison straight — and when they come out, they’re gay,” Carson said. “So, did something happen while they were in there? Ask yourself that question.”
UPDATE: Ben Carson issues statement, says he’s sorry
A majority of the medical community — including the American Psychological Association — believes “most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation.”
Additionally, a study in rats shows that exposure to sex hormones in developing fetuses during a critical period in brain development has a significant effect on future sexual orientation. Studies also have shown that there’s a genetic component attached to one’s sexual preference.
It’s not the first time Carson has set his sights on homosexuality. In 2013, he tried to draw a comparison between homosexuality and bestiality.
In other news, on Tuesday, Carson announced the formation of an exploratory committee for a 2016 run: