Ashleigh Banfield, anchor of CNN’s “Early Start,” yesterday said that being gay was a choice, when reporting on Curtis Knapp, the Kansas pastor who wants the government to kill all gay people. Banfield quickly took to Twitter to clarify her comments:
Need 2 clarify. Incest and pedophelia are CRIMES & victims have no choice. Being gay is not. Relatnshps r by choice. Way of life not crime.
Being gay is not a choice. Being in consensual relationship is. I support LGBT people. I do not support pastor who says its a crime.
Last night, GLAAD contacted The New Civil Rights Movement to let us know they had reached out to CNN, and Banfield would be discussing her remarks on today’s show, which she did:
I made some comments yesterday that ended up getting a lot of traction out there, not only on Twitter but elsewhere. And I want to be very, very clear about what my comments were about. I probably misspoke and mangled words, but I want to be very clear.
When I said that incest and pedophilia involve people who don’t have a choice — victims who don’t have a choice — and then said a gay relationship, you do have a choice, they are not crimes. Gay people involved in relationships are not committing any crimes at all. However, those who perpetrate incest and perpetrate pedophilia are committing crimes. I don’t know that my comments were taken in that light and I certainly hope they were, but in no way did I ever want to suggest that being gay is a choice. It is not. And I probably used the word “lifestyle choice” — not what I meant to say at all. Being gay is not a choice; being in a voluntary gay relationship is a choice. It is not a crime. So I hope that at least clears up any of the comments I made after that story of the pastor. And in no way do I agree with or stand by any of the comments that that pastor made either.
Below are two videos, via Mediaite. The first is Banfield’s clarification from this morning.
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