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New GOP darling: Sorry if ‘anyone was offended’ by comparing ‘gays’ and NAMBLA

By Arturo Garcia
Friday, March 29, 2013 17:28 EDT
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Dr. Ben Carson on MSNBC 032913
 
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Johns Hopkins University neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson, who has become increasingly popular in conservative circles, offered an explanation, if not a real apology, for remarks earlier this week equating the LGBT community with pedophiles.

“If anybody was offended, I apologize to you,” Carson told MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell on Friday. “But what I was basically saying is that there is no group. I wasn’t equating those things, I don’t think they’re equal.”

Carson, who has been touted by conservatives as a possible presidential candidate, had been criticized for telling Fox News host Sean Hannity on March 26, 2013 that he believes marriage is ” a well-established, fundamental pillar of society and no group, be they gays, be they NAMBLA, be they people who believe in bestiality. It doesn’t matter what they are. They don’t get to change the definition.”

On Friday, Carson said that as a Christian he had “a duty” to love people regardless of sexual orientation, while walking back his original remarks.

“If you ask me for an apple and I give you an orange you would say, well that’s not an orange,” Carson said. “And then I say, that’s a banana, that’s not an apple either. And there’s a peach, that’s not an apple, either. But it doesn’t mean that I’m equating the banana and the orange and the peach. And in the same way I’m not equating those things.”

Talking Points Memo reported that graduating students of the university’s school of medicine started a petition calling for Johns Hopkins to “select an alternative speaker who better reflects the values of the student body and the University” for the school’s upcoming commencement ceremony.

“Are you prepared to withdraw as commencement speaker?” Mitchell asked.

“Absolutely,” Carson answered. “I would say that, you know, this is their day and the last thing I would want to do is rain on their parade.”

Update, 7:27 p.m. EST: This story has been edited and corrected to reflect the proper source of the student petition regarding Carson’s commencement speech.

Watch Mitchell’s interview with Carson, posted on Friday by Media Matters, below.

Arturo Garcia
Arturo Garcia
Arturo R. García is the managing editor at Racialicious.com. He is based in San Diego, California and has written for both print and broadcast media, including contributions to GlobalComment.com, The Root and Comment Is Free. Follow him on Twitter at @ABoyNamedArt
 
 
 
 
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