Ben Carson says being gay is "absolutely" a choice and that the evidence to back his claim is prison. "A lot of people who go into prison go into prison straight—and when they come out, they're gay," the potential 2016 GOP candidate says in a CNN interview. "So, did something happen while they were in there? Ask yourself that question." Carson is a neurosurgeon, but his stance runs counter to that of most of his colleagues in the medical world, CNN notes.
As for gay marriage, he says it should be a state-by-state issue, and that a legal union between gay people needn't be called marriage. "Why do gay people want to get married? Why do they say they want to get married? Because they want to have various rights—property rights, visitation rights," he notes. "Why can't any two human beings, I don't care what their sexual orientation is, why can't they have the legal right to do those things? That does not require changing the definition of marriage." Carson previously apologized for referencing bestiality in a discussion of gay marriage.