Perry compares homosexuality to alcoholism - Dallas News |

Perry compares homosexuality to alcoholism

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Rick Perry, Texas Governor Rick Perry, Texas Governor
SAN FRANCISCO - Texas Gov. Rick Perry, during a visit that focused primarily on economic issues, drew on a reference to alcoholism to explain his view of homosexuality.

Perry's comments to the Commonwealth Club of California came after Texas' Republican Convention on Saturday sanctioned platform language allowing Texans to seek voluntary counseling to "cure" being gay.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that in response to a question about it, Perry said he did not know whether the therapy worked.

Perry, a former and potential future GOP presidential candidate, was then asked whether he believed homosexuality was a disorder.

The paper says that the governor responded that "whether or not you feel compelled to follow a particular lifestyle or not, you have the ability to decide not to do that."

He said: "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."

The Texas Republican platform stand on the issue is in contrast to California and New Jersey, which have previously banned licensed professionals from providing such therapy to minors.

The timing of Perry's comments wasn't the best.

As Dallas city leaders try to woo the Republican Party to host its national convention in Dallas in 2016, Perry may have done some image damage by his choice comparison.

"This is nothing we haven't heard from Governor Perry before," said Rafael McDonnell with Resource Center Dallas.

Resource Center, which supports the LGBT community, believes Perry's remarks will alienate potential supporters.

"We see overwhelming support on the Democratic side," said McDonnell. "We do, however, see support from self-identified Republicans, so he is dismissing those voters at this parallel."

Will Goldman is equally offended.

As an openly gay man and recovering alcoholic for 25 years, he hates that Texas' highest elected official could dismiss alcoholism and homosexuality as mere choices.

"That was a decision made by God that he wanted Will to have brown eyes just as He decided he wanted Will to be gay and fortunately have a happy, sober life," said Goldman.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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