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. Pablo

    Being gay is not necessarily a choice, but rather a response to certain environmental factors in a persons life. And it is BS that it is in the genetics of a person because that would be like a disease because if a female is attracted to female or male to male then they can not reproduce and therefore cause certain problems with how humans are wired.

    October 14, 2010 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmy

      Not all genetic conditions have to be hereditary...

      October 14, 2010 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      @Pablo...what about anomalous? a consensual anomy.

      October 14, 2010 at 9:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Pablo, you are under the misconception that Nature is perfect. It isn't. Genetic combinations are not perfect, they are just produced because the genetic composition of all the millions of variations can happen, thus the myriad of different people on Earth, as well as animals, insects, etc. But, certainly there are combinations that are stronger than others depending on the environment they happen to be born, but also depending on genetic rules of associations, so you can cross a dog with a horse, but you can cross a horse with a donkey producing the mule, even though the mule can not reproduce, it was still created by nature because it could. Gay people are born attracted to same s e x, so they will tend to die off in a perfect world after a couple of million years assuming they are left in peace and wouldn't be harassed to marry so as to pretend to be Straight. 🙂 But what a tragedy it would be to cast away a great source of valuable genes perhaps capable of fighting off the next great cancer or the next Einstein, or next General, President, Doctor, Engineer, etc, etc just because they want to have s e x with same gender. It does not make sense to do so for our own survival. Since we all carry some of the genes that make a gay person I would think that Straight people will continue to pair off and when the right combination of them strikes, gay people will continued to be produced. In case it may be my son or daughter I would feel much better if the World was much more kinder to them than it is now.

      October 15, 2010 at 6:56 am | Report abuse |
  2. Andrea

    I don't think choice is the appropriate term here, I think its a preference!!!!

    October 14, 2010 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      @Andrea, is partial birth abortion a preference, too?

      October 14, 2010 at 9:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Andrea, no-choice to be attracted to same gender, no preference either. Choice to have s e x with same gender? Yes. Choice to be s e x ually attracted? No.
      Reaper, you are thoroughly confused. You are incorrectly equating killing a fetus with having s e x with same gender. One is bad (unless the health of the mother depends on it) and tragic, regardless, the latter is good,as good as Straight people having s e x, again assuming being done with consenting adults.

      October 15, 2010 at 7:05 am | Report abuse |
  3. me!


    October 14, 2010 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • stillbill

      My God, someone who was in that life style speaks up and tells the truth. Thank you!

      October 14, 2010 at 6:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Me! So you are B i s e x ual, so? A small percentage of the gay population, the few who can actually play both teams with regularity and choice. What about the 90% of gay people who can't choose because every grain in their body says so. Born that way. Just like you were born with that duality, other gay people are not. There is no way in H E L L I could "choose" to be gay, attracted to hairy male bodies? Gives me the willies. Soft smooth skin and natural perfume of a woman is for me. See, no choice, I am naturally attracted to women. So are gay people attracted to same gender. No choice. Unless they are b i like you.

      October 15, 2010 at 7:18 am | Report abuse |
  4. Scott

    It's a part of our DNA, just like any other aspect of who people are as individuals. Gender, race, hair color, eye color, etc. No one chooses to be who they are as an individual, just like no one chose to be born in the first place. We are who we are, and just because some people do not like it, does not make us wrong for being so.

    October 14, 2010 at 5:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      @Scott you defined gay perfectly. It denies every god-given attribute about itself including its gender!

      October 14, 2010 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Well said Scott. Don't pay attention to Reaper, he is just bubbling some nonsense only can understand. God didn't give anyone any attributes. If he did he would have given him a brain to reason with. We are all born with weaker or stronger abilities than others, mentally and physically, at random. It's up to us to develop those into something useful or not. It doesn't make sense that some are born mongoloids while others are born Frank Sinatras from the start, while others need to work much harder to make it to the top, while others the top is to help your child build a sand castle, or feed the needy. Those are truly choices we need to figure out. For most of us, choosing the right mate seems to be the most important of all choices for happiness and growth regardless of gender. (and Yes, there are more than just two)

      October 15, 2010 at 7:33 am | Report abuse |
  5. BradyB

    Glad to see the religious zealots posting about what is and isn't scientifically proven. Why don't you ignorant folks go back to subjugating your wives and leave the thinking to those of us capable of tying our shoes while breathing.

    October 14, 2010 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      is this the ghost of brady as in Brady's Bunch? Don't they have an abyss between you and us, the real world?

      October 14, 2010 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Sam

    We all know noboby born gay or lesbien we have to respect mariage betwen men and respect from ur family and friends

    October 14, 2010 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Jacob A

    Mr. President.
    When did you become a scientist. You should focus on the reason why you are elected and stop being God.

    October 14, 2010 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmy

      I think you're confused about the relationship between the words "God" and "scientist"

      October 14, 2010 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      No, the confusion is between faith and reason. Obama has expressed belief, faith, in a thing without reason. Seems pretty clear to me!

      October 14, 2010 at 10:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      You don't need to be a God in order to render your opinion on anything. Specially when we don't know what God wants to begin with because he can't seem to make himself appear. Oh sure apparently he did during the days when there wasn't video, and so we only have geezers stories from 3000 years ago or so with supernatural powers like splitting oceans in two, leading the Jewish people from bondage from Egypt through the desert taking many years to do so, and yet strangely only 6 days to create the entire universe, all that to let 6 million of them die the most horrific death under Hitler before Americans and Russians showed up, (I guess people think He commanded the generals to finally show up?) I don't know but the stories in these books don't impress me much as a divine being with all this invisibility business. But, it sure seems convenient for those who want you to give 10% of your earnings to their Church. Where is God? shhhhh! He is everywhere, invisible! Oh, I see...

      October 15, 2010 at 7:54 am | Report abuse |
  8. Mike

    Wow...if Obama said it, it must be true! If the world's leading scientists aren't sure, how can Obama make such a bold statement?

    October 14, 2010 at 6:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • TK

      keyword, "I believe". He never tried to say it was fact, it's his opinion, which he apparently is not allowed to say.

      October 14, 2010 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Keep it up

      It was a townhall meeting...not an Dr Phil moment or an oprah winfrey show! He is conducting the people's business, and speaking in the capacity of president of USA. Think about it. He acts like he is surrounded by inept advisors whose focus is always below the waistline. My reco to Obama is to get rid of the dust bunnies and focus on the real issues.

      October 15, 2010 at 12:04 am | Report abuse |
  9. Walter

    Test test test

    October 14, 2010 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Alan

    Schizophrenia isn't a choice either.

    October 14, 2010 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Kay

    I think it's more like being right or left handed. Some people are right handed, others are left handed, and some are ambidextrous. For a long time it was also thought that using your left hand was "evil" and it was forcibly corrected. We now understand why people favor one hand over the other, maybe someday we'll know why a very small portion of the population are gay. I don't think it has anything to do with choice, any more than being right or left handed does.

    October 14, 2010 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmy

      If only people could learn from history.

      October 14, 2010 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Excellent Comment. It is just that. However, fortunately for left handed people, those baboons that put together the Bible didn't care about right/left handeness, cause if they did, left handed people would be screwed as well. Sigh...

      October 14, 2010 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow

      Oh no not the orientation thing again?it's really a disorientation!

      October 15, 2010 at 12:11 am | Report abuse |
  12. Delaware Dave

    Having grown up close to a gay cousin. I can tell you he was f'n gay since the earliest point I knew him. I remember being like 10 and him 4 and teasing him about being gay. I felt bad when he got older and he was certifiably gay. But without a doubt, he was gay when he came out the womb. His brothers and sister who grew up the same way were not gay, so I don't want to hear about that upbringing b's argument. Anybody who has not grown up with or around someone who was gay, wouldn't know. But best believe you know a kid is a gay from the gate.

    October 14, 2010 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      You have about as much credibility as a can of Delaware Punch tm

      October 14, 2010 at 10:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      Well said Dave. Credibility 10. Reaper, credibility: 0

      October 15, 2010 at 8:02 am | Report abuse |
  13. Delaware Dave

    Remember those kids you would meet in grade school who had a little more sugar in the tank than the other kids? Yeah they were gay then and grew up to be gay adults. Gay is definitely not a choice. Look around you.

    It's about time somebody said the obvious.

    October 14, 2010 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • You reap what you sow!

      those were a stare if a sweet innocent child...you evil p[Ed ]{oph}(ile)!

      October 14, 2010 at 10:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Carlos

      The obvious is right!

      Reaper, you lost me here. no clue. Come back to Earth.

      October 15, 2010 at 8:03 am | Report abuse |
  14. The Truth

    Good lord. The arab world won't defeat us, we will. In 20 years or less we will be on our knees with our asses in the air begging to be overrun.and Phd Obama will say, opps my bad bro!!

    October 14, 2010 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmy

      The Arab world isn't trying to defeat us. Maybe we'll have a chance at remaining a superpower if everyone stops with the ignorant "us vs. them" mentality.

      October 14, 2010 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  15. The Truth

    I care nothing about being a super power. That's what got us here in the first place. The arab world believes if you are not muslim you are an infidel and worthy of nothing less than being beheaded. Straight from their own teachings.

    October 14, 2010 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
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