October 14th, 2010
04:42 PM ET

Obama: I believe homosexuality isn't a choice

President Obama said Thursday that he believes homosexuality is not a choice, but the result of people being born with "a certain make-up."

His comment came during a town hall-style event - hosted by Viacom's BET, CMT and MTV networks - in which students asked him questions.

A student asked Obama if he believed homosexuality is a choice. Obama responded he was no expert, then added: "I don't think it's a choice. I think people are born with a certain make-up."

"We're all children of God," Obama said. "We don't make determinations about who we love. That's why I think discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is wrong."


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Filed under: Barack Obama • Gay and lesbian
soundoff (231 Responses)
  1. Ani

    Does he still believe that marriage is between a man and a woman then?! COME ON!

    October 14, 2010 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmy

      I do not understand what is going on in your mind. First of all, Obama specifically said the words "I believe"...he is not claiming any scientific proof of his opinion. He isn't a "bona fide scientist", nor is he claiming to be one.

      Secondly, after bashing him for being "unscientific", you proceed to declare the opposite opinion to be fact. "There is no gay-gene, no biological marker"...is that not hypocrisy?

      October 14, 2010 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nice Person

      Dear hateful Ani, I'm a psychology grad student, and all research proves that it IS physiologica. I'll repeat, in case Fox Channel is blocking your mind: it IS physiological.

      October 14, 2010 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      @Jimmy the point being nothing compels the gay-style and life except Choice...and choice as in the person chooses to act...

      October 14, 2010 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Adrian

      Ms. Alix..that's all you got.. MONKEY?? Please go back to your pathetic life... jerk!!

      October 14, 2010 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      CNN, you suck!!

      October 15, 2010 at 4:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      What compels you to sleep with women, is what compels gay men to sleep with men: natural attraction, from birth.

      October 15, 2010 at 4:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      You can choose to sleep with another man, yes. But you can not choose to be "attracted" to another man. For that, you need to be born with it.

      October 15, 2010 at 4:14 am | Report abuse |
    • donald

      I totally believe marriage is between a man and a woman. And the President does to, that is why he is married to one. As to being gay, it's simply the parents' job to steer the child in the way they should go. This is biblical, Moral, and Ethical. What is instilled in the child will be revealed in the child. You reap what you sew.

      October 15, 2010 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Alert Citizen

      I want at least 1 percent educated psychologists who are republicans to deny what Obama said!

      October 15, 2010 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Alert Citizen

      How about having an affair while being married (which is equally immoral in biblical sense) a criminal offense?

      October 15, 2010 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • carlos

      Donald, you have your head so deep in the Book of Lies that because you have chosen to believe it is the word of God when it isn't, you are not able to see the facts. It's all around you, but can't appreciate as long as you think an ancient book is what God wants you to think (because those that wrote it told you so). Family of 5, all told by parents the same education, and gay bashing by surrounding media and Religion, and still one is openly gay, after submitting to prayers and psychologist to be "cured". Still gay, born that way. Sorry. I wish for you Reason and Courage instead of blindly choosing to follow lies just because you are afraid to stand on your own.

      October 15, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tim

      It is not psychological, nor a disease. It is spiritual oppression. For those pro Obama and others that support gay rights, other social decay activities. You will all see the light when God has his say in the future. The oldest book in the world (The Bible) clearly lays out references that it is not allowed, that these acts are spiritual in nature, and should not be allowed or participated in EVER, to inherit the kingdom of Heaven. This life is building blocks for the next life in eternity. Sadly, so many think they can out think and out fox God's ultimate perfect plans, but HIS judgment is coming in the future on this issue and many more in this broken world society we live in. The world is rotting at the core with human values (like this, abortion, drugs, war, hate crimes, etc)...and it will end soon enough...and ushered in by God's law, and this Satanic controlled world we live in (also planned by God to test the true will of man) will pass away!

      October 15, 2010 at 4:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      @Carlos you sound like you hate you parents. Men are not demons and ARE NOT compel to do anything. Men inaddition to their image of God they were given free will. Their love for their wives IS NOT an addiction either. Love is a holy sacred gift. The intimacy with marriage is not compelled either. You are incapable of knowing this love.

      October 15, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • 3000 years numbnuts


      should the bible says that gays are pleasing in the eyes of god, would still consider it as book of lies?

      October 18, 2010 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  2. David

    Although Obama gets criticized in the gay community for not being a "fierce advocate" of our community, I've never heard these words come of out the mouth of the President of the United States. Bravo.

    October 14, 2010 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Travis

      David, I totally agree. I applaud President Obama for answering the question directly. Way to go Mr. President. This paves huge progress for the gay community and civil rights.

      October 14, 2010 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bradley

      He gets criticized because he is the one who called himself a "fierce advocate."

      October 14, 2010 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      Mmmmm...I don't know....maybe he is defending the honor of a family member or himself...like every other celebrity and elected-official who condones ho' Mose xuality!

      October 14, 2010 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. lindseytinsey

    We are all born this way!

    October 14, 2010 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Stracker

    Perfect sentiment!

    Thanks for all the details though.

    October 14, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Reece

    Im so glad that he is finally taking this issue by the horns! The more ppl understand about the issue, the less hate we will see! Thk you Obama

    October 14, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Clark

    Based on...?

    October 14, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Travis


      Based on conversations with gay Americans. Why dont you have one sometime.

      October 14, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos Sutter

      Based on Science, measured results, etc. It beats the hell out of because a book written more than 2000 years ago, by old farts of those days said so.Oh, I forgot, THEY also said that GOD told them so. Oh, ok...

      October 14, 2010 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • derek

      what science proves tht some men are born with an attraction to another man? if it were natural, the anatomy would be different as well so as to have physical compatibility just like a man has with a woman.

      October 14, 2010 at 6:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Derek, we, the planet and everything in it, have been evolving for Billions of years. Nature continues to create everything it can with the allowed combination of genes it has in the pool. As long as the environment does not destroy these creations they will continue to evolve and so we can have gay people co-existing with straight people. Human beings are born with an attraction to have s e x with other beings, when it happens between man and woman, procreation can happen, in the meantime hanky panky continues, anatomically or not. Man will try to stick their thing anywhere they can just for the drive of it, and women will insert all kinds of things for pleasure, not procreation. We are not dogs. We use (should) our brain to decide when we are going to procreate (or not) and when we'll just do it for fun, love, warmth, fever, passion, etc. It's all good. It is not a crime to enjoy s e x, as long as it is between consenting adults.

      October 15, 2010 at 4:41 am | Report abuse |
    • The webmaster

      Carlos, you are a depraved man. Your hatredness for the Bible and True God is noted. But really you have a greater hatred for Truth...cause it makes you a fool each and everytime. Your foolishness is plain for all to see.

      October 15, 2010 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Hector

    Thank you Mr. Obama, you represent the true American Creed!

    October 14, 2010 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Kris

    Prove it. All the SCIENCE says otherwise.

    October 14, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dk

      Please provide examples of how science says otherwise????

      Good luck!

      October 14, 2010 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Travis

      Kris –

      You obviously do not know anyone who is gay. I am gay – and to your response, I did NOT choose to be this way. Just like you did not chose to be a man or a woman. While I love who I am and have come to accept being gay – I will confidently say I was born this way. I grew up on a rural Iowa farm and was never exposed to any gay people until years later. Kris – I knew I was gay in Kindergarden.

      October 14, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • chris


      Well here is a link to some science that say you are born gay...http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/271/1554/2217

      October 14, 2010 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      Obama's statement and your imaginings that you were born this way carries as much weight as the fable: emperor's new clothes!

      October 14, 2010 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Hey, Reaper, so what proof do you have gay people's attraction to same gender is a choice? That they are not born this way? OH, please not the Bible (ha, ha! LOL!) This is the same book that said God stopped the Sun so Joshua could kill his enemies giving him more daylight? The Sun? The sun wasn't moving, it was the Earth! Oh, but I guess God must to have made a mistake, or I guess you think the sun was orbiting the Earth on those days. ha ha! Please don't insult yourself by using it as a reasoning tool. Do you have any other books not written by folks 3000 years ago with powerful invisible gods. Do you have any visible ones by any chance? Preferably one that can speak? No? anyone?

      October 15, 2010 at 4:55 am | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      Who are you CNN-carlos??? I see alot of acceptable comments deleted and you miraculous appear...to bring...you creative spin denying truth!
      A selective vaccine immunized all Carlos comments avoiding CNN's blackhole censoring? How unethical!

      October 15, 2010 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      Immorality is the same regardless of the label. Immorality is a choice. Some attempt to soften the gravity of the act by renaming it "a tendency", "a preference", "a cogenital glitch aka I am born that way"...it is a choice.

      October 15, 2010 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      No baby come into the world acting out se xu al...no toddler has prediposition for this sin either...consenting adults IS NOT a determinate of whether the act or life is virtuous. Both g-ay life and its acts are tragic and bad; just as bad partial
      birth abortion.

      October 15, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      Both situ consent to a denying truth, dignity and life of the person(s). Carlos you attack anyone who defends truth, dignity, and life and the victims it targeted. You made a choice to do evil. Yet you don't want to take responsible for you gay-choice and neither do you want to be held accountable for your gay-choice. Like a serial murderer, I bet the body count of hurt is high around you! 

      October 15, 2010 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Matt Kreuzer

    Obama knows better and still doesn't suspend kicking gay soldiers out of the military.

    October 14, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Whitney

      You do realize that there is more than ONE person in our government that makes laws? It's not a dictatorship, he didn't do it himself!

      October 14, 2010 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Nathan

    Clark, what is your belief that it is a choice based on?


    October 14, 2010 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • stillbill

      If it's not a choice, then how do you account for people who lived a gay lifestyle and now consider themselves straight?

      October 14, 2010 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      Nathan, choice is not a belief! Choice is an act! Ho Mose xuality is an act not a belief! But you and Obama appear to be confuse and having a Palin-moment.

      October 14, 2010 at 9:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos


      Simple. There are Bi-s e x ual people, and a whole gamma between Gay and Straight. So, some can choose, that is, they are born with a s e x ual attraction to both se xes, not just one as most of gay and straight people are. Don't confuse choice to have s e x, which is indeed a choice, with NO-choice of being attracted to same gender. For that, you need to be born with it.

      October 15, 2010 at 5:01 am | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      Bi se xual ity is a ho Mose xuality.
      Het eros ex uality is normal, natural act. Just because the person choose to intermittantly engage in g-ay encounters does not change that it is a ho Mose xuality act. Bi se xual ity is a ho Mose xu al in denial. All acts are immoral and considered intrinsically evil and the mannerism gravely evil.
      Depraved-Carlos's assertion, gender attraction starts, from birth is baseless and without merit.

      October 15, 2010 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. monique

    Well, he Is the expert on everything!

    October 14, 2010 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      LOL-sarcastic....Right! This man just made the most asinine statement throwout the world. Obama has confirmed his stupidity world-wide...I doubt if anyone will take him or the American policies seriously. Time for a CHANGE OF SHOES in 2012...and the boot can't come fast enough!

      October 14, 2010 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Reaper, Europeans don't have a problem with gay people, only some idiots in America do. The World will respect us more now for not being so backwards and hate mongers like some "Christians".

      October 15, 2010 at 5:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Arthur

      Carlos is right, it is the Americans that are in the backwater in these issues. If you look at all the posts here, all that are against ho mo se xu al ity don't really have any backing of anything but probably brain washing from birth by "fear of the gay man, so do mi is a sin" etc. Also the absurd confusion that is has anything to do with pe do filism. Serioulsy, when you read through the posts and replys, the pro gay are clearly more intelligent and more educated. I am a 100% straight European male, to me this whole debate is ridiculous, we are all human beings and as long as there is consensual love between us, who cares who it is between?

      October 15, 2010 at 5:47 am | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      @depraved-Carlos and you friend Arthur...last I looked there are five continents on the this earth...so what if you two made Europe your stomping ground for you illicit behavior. Just for the record not everyone has been bitten on the @$$ by the illuminati-sponsored revolution...further who authorized you two to speak on behalf of Europe much less the rest if the world...and as for the link between pe do ph (ile) and ho' Mose xual ity: its found to be of merit. The rest of the world is focusing its resources and its attention ABOVE the waist line. Why don't LGBT do the same?

      October 15, 2010 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Sean

    what kind of make-up? Maybelline?

    October 14, 2010 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jasmine


      October 14, 2010 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • 808maui

      Electing Obama was the biggest mistake this country has ever made. He's a good talker but talking doesn't get the job done neither does his opinion. Come 2012 you'll see if this country believed him if he remains in office. He's the captain of a sinking country and he's taking all
      of us down with him.

      October 15, 2010 at 2:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Carlos


      what don't you ask Bush for another 8 years! If you want to see the bottom of the ocean that is. He gave us the sinking ship.

      October 15, 2010 at 5:07 am | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      What is needed in oval office is a christian-living, bible-believing, church-going, faithfully married, conscience well-formed, pro-life, family-supporting, honest, God-fearing, peace-loving, charitable to the poor, taxing Corp and rich, regulating banks utilities and cell phone companies...I would nominate Scott Hahns or Jeff Gavin for president. We
      need holy men in offices...tired of the
      rich, thieving rascals and hatemongers

      October 16, 2010 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  13. DC1

    Finally a President that can see the truth, bravo!

    October 14, 2010 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
  14. blake

    That is almost like saying that adultery is not a choice but is the result of somebody's "make up". Nope. Pretty sure he just looked at her breasts or jumped on Craigslist to hook up. I'm also almost positive that people have the choice to be who they want to be. It's surprising that a black president is telling gay people the same thing that white people often told black people. After all, "it wasn't his choice to be black, it was just part of his make up, but that boy still can't come into my shop".

    October 14, 2010 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mattan Ingram

      So black people choose to be black? What?

      Did you choose to be white and straight?

      October 14, 2010 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • ARG

      Wow, you appear to be mentally retarded. I hope your right to vote is revoked, people like you are the reason this country is in freefall culturally man

      October 14, 2010 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Blake, your reasoning skills need some sharpening.

      You can choose to have s e x with another man, yes. But you can not choose to be attracted to another man. For that, you need to be born with it.

      October 15, 2010 at 5:19 am | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      Depraved-carlos, again gay act is a choice. Attraction is also an act that requires a choice. Your basis for your action are from the flesh and emotions. Man is of an higher order and thus the will, intellect and properly formed conscience should guide his actions. Your depravity operates from the lower beastly form: flesh and emotion that typically found in animals.

      October 15, 2010 at 11:30 pm | Report abuse |
  15. lori

    "with certain make up?" What does that mean? How about just saying "born that way?" Typical, he just couldn't take the statement all the way.

    October 14, 2010 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lisa

      He said born.. Born with a different make up = Born that way. Good grief, why do people have to be so literal.

      October 14, 2010 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
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