At this week's Republican presidential debate, front-runner Dr. Ben Carson said that we gays are perpetrating "myths on our society" when we label opponents of same-sex marriage as homophobes. "This is how they frighten people," he claims.
Homophobia = the irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals.
If Dr. Carson is "frightened" by the myths being "perpetrated" by gays, that would be an irrational fear, yes? That would make him a homophobe, by definition. He is basically saying, "I do not fear homosexuals. Gay people are scary."
His further comments at this week's debate continued the irrationality:
This is how they frighten people and get people to shut up. That's what the PC culture is all about and it's destroying this nation. The fact of the matter is, we, the American people, are not each other's enemies. It's those people who are trying to divide us who are the enemies, and we need to make that very clear to everybody.
If it is frightening to Dr. Carson that I want equality, then he is being irrational. If he views my desire to be equal as divisive and merely an aspect of "PC culture," that makes little sense. If he believes that wanting to be treated equally under the law is provoking some sort of war, making enemies and destroying this nation, then he is not thinking clearly.
While his debate statements prove his homophobia, Dr. Carson's past statements prove that it is he himself who is frightening people and creating enemies:
- He has compared homosexuality to bestiality and pedophilia. That makes people fear us gays. That foments opposition. That is divisive.
- He has claimed that being gay is "absolutely" a choice. To prove it, he claimed that straight people who go into prison come out gay. This generates the illusion that gay men are predatory and dangerous. If we, the American people, are not each other's enemies, as he claims, why would he say something so provocative and contentious?
- He compared same-sex marriage to abnormal adapted car seats for conjoined twins. That is ... well, that is just bat-shit crazy.
Gay people are not "destroying this nation." When we ask for fair and equal treatment, this is not destructive. If it were true that we were deliberately frightening people to silence them, we have not been successful. Anti-gay activists are vocal, strident, and boisterous. There are no signs of them shutting up any time soon.
You know what is truly frightening? The resounding applause Dr. Carson's doublespeak received at the debate. And the fact that using buzz-words like 'PC culture' will resonate with prejudiced people who do not respect the gay community. And how he is pandering to the lowest elements of our society to drum up votes and increase his popularity.
Dr. Carson makes statements that homophobes want to hear. They are afraid of homosexuals gaining equality and homosexuality becoming normalized. But they do not want to recognize that they are afraid, or that they are prejudiced, or that they are divisive. So, when someone such as Dr. Carson says that they are not causing problems, it makes them feel better. It distracts them from Dr. Carson's extremist views. It wins him votes.
Call me a Carsonophobe. I have a genuine fear and aversion to Dr. Carson becoming the president of the United States. But my fear is not irrational, so perhaps "phobic" is too strong. Still, the man's popularity scares the hell out of me.
Let me see if I can echo Dr. Carson's words to explain how I feel:
"This is how Ben Carson frightens people and gets people to vote for him. That's what this right-wing conservative culture is all about and it's destroying this nation. The fact of the matter is, we, the American people, include gay people who want equality. It's those people who are trying to divide us and exclude the gays who are the enemies, and we need to make that very clear to everybody."