How dare Gov. Rick Perry equate homosexuality to alcoholism? At face value, the comparison is extremely offensive to the LGBTQ community, especially since even the friendliest and most functional alcoholics are regarded as dysfunctional dangers to society. But while the 2014 Republican presidential nominee hopeful most likely was not trying to spare anyone’s feelings with his comments, maybe being in San Francisco — home to a large LGBTQ community — softened the governor’s stance on homosexuality.
During an address Wednesday night at the Commonwealth Club of California, Perry made some disparaging remarks about homosexuality when asked about the reparative therapy plank in the Texas GOP platform. What many, both progressives and conservatives, fail to realize is the governor’s comments, though harsh, seem to acknowledge that homosexuality is in one’s genetic makeup. But Perry still believes that individuals have a choice in the matter. “I may have the genetic coding that I'm inclined to be an alcoholic, but I have the desire not to do that, and I look at the homosexual issue the same way,” Perry said.
Implying that a genetic predisposition to alcoholism is similar to sexual orientation is ridiculous. But unlike most anti-gay arguments, such as the one that states homosexuals only want to adopt children to “recruit” them, Perry’s logic is somewhat reasonable. As far as reparative therapy goes, however, homosexuality cannot be cured just as a recovering alcoholic who has undergone treatment or rehabilitation is still an alcoholic.