Ben Carson: Prison Makes You Gay

Ben Carson

Ben Carson may be a neurosurgeon, but he’s no rocket scientist.

It was a bit of a surprise last summer when Ben Carson won a Presidential straw poll at the Western Conservative Summit in Colorado (hosted annually by Colorado Christian University), though perhaps it shouldn't have raised too many eyebrows. After all, the Western Conservative Summit is the same place where Herman Cain won a Presidential straw poll in 2011, supercharging the Herminator's brief bid for the GOP nomination in 2012.

A retired neurosurgeon with no real political resume, Carson is not well known among average American voters. But he is a darling of the far right because…well, he's the kind of guy who will say shit like this:

"A lot of people who go into prison go into prison straight — and when they come out, they're gay."

Carson believes that sexual orientation is a choice that people make. Carson has also watched too many prison movies, as CNN reports:

Asked whether being gay is a choice, Carson responded: "Absolutely."

"Because a lot of people who go into prison go into prison straight — and when they come out, they're gay. So, did something happen while they were in there? Ask yourself that question," Carson said. [Pols emphasis]

That argument, Carson said, "thwarts" the notion that homosexuality isn't a choice, which is at odds with the majority of the medical community, including the American Psychological Association, who says "most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation." Slate's Mark Joseph Stern also outlined the scientific arguments against this particular belief last year.

Carson's comment comes as Republicans try to avoid the kinds of incendiary comments on cultural issues that cost the party two Senate races — when Missouri's Todd Akin and Indiana's Richard Mourdock drew national attention for their remarks on rape — and hurt Mitt Romney in 2012.

CNN was unable to find other Republican Presidential candidates willing to respond to Carson's nonsense.

12 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Arvadonian1 says:

    Well, I'm torn on this.  Do we point out the idiocy of his statement….or run with it in hopes of getting something done about prison/sentancing reform.  Lord knows if conservaitve decide that the way to reduce the number of gays (short of putting a bullet in our heads as the activist in California is promoting) is to reduce the number of prisoners, perhaps they'd jump on board with sentancing reform….

  2. Meiner49er says:

    IF true (and of course, that's a HUGE IF), sure seems like the Conservatives will be forced to end their support of for-profit prisons, no?  Oh, wait, that would require logic…

  3. DaftPunk says:

    Carson is proof that running as a Republican makes you stupid.

    • mamajama55 says:

      Wrong, deluded, bigoted, paranoid, certainly, but not stupid.  His biography is enlightening, and should disqualify him from running for office….a brilliant guy , pioneering neurosurgeon, but with a violent temper, who attacked, among others, his mother, a friend, and a classmate, .Scripture, he says, saved him from committing a crime.

      We need to take him seriously as a candidate – the Republicans certainly will. Calling him "stupid" does not bring light to the issues. 

      • FrankUnderwood says:

        I don't know about taking him seriously. The GOP (and the Dems) always have some exotic freaks running at this stage in the game. Remember the Rev. Marion "Pat" Robertson in 1988? Or Pat Buchanan in 1992 and 1996? Gary Bauer ran once. There were Michelle Bachman AND Herman Cain. (And the Dems have had their share of out-of-the-mainstream candidate. Remember Mike Gravel? Dennis Kucinich? Al Sharpton?)

        I would place the good doctor (and I use that term in describing his neurosurgical skills only) in the same category as Bachman, Cain, Robertson, etc. If I had to select a nut case who is a serious threat, it would be Huckabee or Cruz.

      • DaftPunk says:

        You missed my point.  

        There is evidence that once upon a time he was a smart guy.

        Since he's become the Republican flavor of the week it's nothin but a big stream of stupid coming out of his mouth.  It's like he stopped his steady diet of medical journals and substituted NewsMax and the WSJ.

        • FrankUnderwood says:

          That goes without saying. Running for the Repub nomination does lead to stupidity. They have to appeal to the baser elements of their base. Jeb Bush is trying to be the exception. But it won't work for him.

  4. notaskinnycook says:

    Wait–this guy went to medical school sometime after 1973 (when the APA removed homosexuality from the DSM)? I know he's neither a psychiatrist nor a psychologist but psych classes are part of premed and med school. Did he sleep through those classes? I wonder what his mark in them was.

  5. JeffcoBlue says:

    Guys WAIT. I've seen this movie!

  6. FrankUnderwood says:

    There's is one silver lining to all this. Every time one of these fools (i.e., U.S. Rep Steven King and the Latinos with the cataloupe calves, the Idaho state rep who didn't realize that the stomach and the uterus were not connected, Todd Akin, and this homophobic moron) opens his mouth, a millenial thinks twice before voting Republican. 

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