Being Gay a 'Lifestyle' Choice, Like Alcoholism? Politics of Homosexuality Flare in 2010 Campaign

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"Mr. Buck's ill-informed views are not only factually inaccurate but are extremely dangerous," said Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese. "When public figures like Mr. Buck make statements like he did today, kids struggling with their identities question their self-worth and other kids justify bullying."

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Obama: 'I Don't Think Being Gay Is a Choice'

Buck told reporters after the appearance on "Meet the Press" that he didn't intend to correlate being gay with having a disease.

"I certainly didn't mean it that way," he said. "What I meant was that I think there are a variety of factors, and I was trying to explain."

Most gays and lesbians say their sexual orientation is not a choice, a view shared by many in the medical and scientific community.

Homosexuality has been considered a normal variation of human sexuality for nearly four decades. The American Psychiatric Association and American Psychological Association both declassified homosexuality as a mental disorder in the early 1970s.

President Obama expressed this view at an MTV forum last week, telling the young audience, "I don't profess to be an expert -- this is a lay person's opinion -- but I don't think it's a choice. ... People are born with a certain makeup. We are all children of God. We don't make determinations about who we love."

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