Politics

Ben Carson takes on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell on the definition of ‘marriage’ [VIDEO]

Photo of Jeff Poor
Jeff Poor
Media Reporter

On Sean Hannity’s Fox News program earlier this week, Dr. Ben Carson, the director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital, offered his view on the hot-button issue of the week, same-sex marriage.

According to Carson, marriage is defined as between one man and one woman, what he called a “well-established, fundamental pillar of society.” And Carson said this institution could not be redefined by any group, including proponents of bestiality and pedophilia.

Invoking those groups drew the ire of many, but Carson went on MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” to clarify his remarks, which he apologized to those who took offense.

“Well, first of all, they are my views, that should be mentioned. They are not the views of the institution,” Carson said. “If someone goes back and examines what I’ve been talking about and writing about over the last couple of decades, it’s the same things that I’m talking about now. It’s just that now more people are paying attention to them. And you know, I think in terms of what was said on Sean Hannity’s show — that was taken completely out of context and completely misunderstood in terms of what I was trying to say. You know, as a Christian, you know I have a duty to love all people, and that includes people who have other sexual orientations, and I certainly do. And never had any intention of offending anyone. What I was basically saying and if anybody was offended, I apologize to you. 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.”

“Just you know, if you ask me for an apple and I give you an orange, you would say, that’s not an orange,” Carson continued. “And then I say, that’s a banana and that’s not an apple either. Or 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. My point was that once we start changing the definitions, then where do we stop? You know, we can go with anything, and I certainly don’t have any problem with people who are gay having legal arrangements. In fact any two adults, gay, straight, whatever — certainly they can have legal arrangements so that they can share property and have inheritance rights and visitation rights. You know, that’s a kind thing to do. They should be treated just as anyone else. But being treated just as anyone else, no one else gets to change the definitions of standard, you know, societal pillars. So, why should anybody have that right?”

Carson maintained his stance on the definition of marriage in the MSNBC appearance.

“My impression is what’s being asked for is the convenience of the title ‘marriage,’ which is an institution that was established by God,” he said. “You know, I’m not sure that is the same thing. Everybody has a right of association. And if we don’t give them the right to transfer property and to have you know, visitation, et cetera, then we really should be examining that.”

Follow Jeff on Twitter