Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson is recognized for being the first surgeon to successfully separate twins conjoined at the head.
The views of the retired Johns Hopkins neurosurgeon became controversial on May 4, when Carson announced his bid for the Republican nomination in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
Since then Carson has landed himself on the“hot seat”in numerous occasions for his controversial views. In an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity on March 26, 2013, Carson gave this opinion when asked about his thoughts on same sex marriage.
“Marriage is between a man and a woman and is a well established fundamental pillar of society. No group, be they gays, be they NAMBLA (North American Man/Boy Love Association), be they people who believe in bestiality, it doesn’t matter what they are, they don’t get to change the definition,” said Carson.
In an interview on New Day with CNN’s Chris Cuomo on March 4, Carson went as far to say that homosexuality is a choice. “A lot of people who go to prison go in straight, and when they come out they’re gay. Did something happen to them while they’re in there? Ask yourself that question,” said Carson.
In a speech from the Center for Security Policy’s National Action Summit on Sept. 29, Carson criticized the foundation of the Advanced Placement U.S History Course by implying that it has an anti-American bias for its foundation.“I think that most people when they are finished with that course will be ready to go sign up for ISIS,” said Carson.
Carson’s latest controversial statements have been targeted towards the Muslim community. During his appearance on Meet the Press with NBC’s Chuck Todd on Sept. 20, Carson was asked if he believed that Islam is consistent with the U.S. constitution? “No, I do not … I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that,” said Carson .
Mikayla Burney, a criminal justice major on the Clarkston campus, said,
“I feel like because of that one statement, Ben Carson is just as ignorant as Donald Trump. Muslims have the same exact capacity to be president as a Jew or a Christian.”
“I was upset … I felt that his statements were offensive and ignorant,” said Matthew Whiteman, a mechanical engineering major on the Clarkston campus.
Amina Daugherty, an English major on the Clarkston campus, said,
“I feel that Ben Carson is contradicting himself. Because to say that any religion in America contradicts the Constitution is in itself a contradiction in terms, as the constitution itself is the law of a country that was established by people who were themselves fleeing religious persecution. In addition, any god-fearing person of any faith should never suggest that a person hold the law of a man above the law of God regardless of how they choose to worship.”
Carson’s controversial remarks have been viewed as ignorant by many people in the voting public. In the race for the Republican nomination, though, they may be working for the neurosurgeon.
According to polling data from Real Clear Politics on Oct. 1, Carson is in second place and trails frontrunner Donald Trump by seven points. Carson also is ranked fourth in the Sept. 29 edition of USA Today’s Republican power rankings poll.