Andrew Rosenthal at the New York Times:
Perhaps the most ridiculous argument against marriage equality is the one voiced most recently by David Bates, a Republican member of the New Hampshire legislature – that homosexuality is a choice, and thus same-sex marriage is not a civil rights issue.
“Civil rights have to do with intrinsic qualities that a person just can’t change,” said Mr. Bates, the sponsor of a bill that would repeal New Hampshire’s marriage equality law. Being gay, he said, doesn’t qualify. “There’s no other example of any basis that we afford a civil right based upon a behavior or a preferential choice,” he said.
It’s astonishing that anyone in the 21st century would hew to the notion that humans choose their sexual orientation. I wonder when Mr. Bates made the affirmative decision to become a heterosexual.But in any case, the preference issue isn’t sufficient to end the conversation. We choose our religious affiliations—or at least we have the freedom to choose—and yet it’s illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of religion.