My Faith: How I learned to stop 'praying away the gay'
Don Lemon with his grandmother on his third birthday.
May 22nd, 2011
01:00 AM ET

My Faith: How I learned to stop 'praying away the gay'

Editor's Note: Don Lemon is a CNN anchor and author of Transparent, a memoir .

By Don Lemon, CNN

"School day, time to get up, sleepy head. School day."

Although she's been gone since 1998, my grandmother's words ring in my head just about every morning of my life. That's how MaMe, as I called her, got me out of bed and off to my Catholic school when I was growing up and in her care.

But before I shuffled my way to the bathroom to begin my morning routine, I had to hit the floor on my knees to pray, just as I had the night before.

It was usually The Lord's Prayer ("Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name...") followed by asking God to watch and guide me through my day until I returned to the safety of my home that evening.

But MaMe (pronounced MAH-me) didn't know that at a very early age her favorite grandson had begun to pray, silently, that God would change him from being different, from having crushes on boys, from being more curious about boys than girls.

By age four or five, I was too young to sexualize my infatuations but I knew that everyone else, including my family and friends, would think it was wrong.

Perhaps it was the conversations I overheard from adults around my hometown of Port Allen, Louisiana, who'd mimic gay people, calling them "funny" or "sissy" or "fagots."

Perhaps it was Sunday mornings at our Baptist church, where preachers taught that liking someone of the same sex was a direct and swift path to hell. And that if that person would just turn to the Lord and confess his sin, then God would change him back into the person He wanted him to be - a person who only had crushes on the opposite sex.

All of which meant that, from a very early age, I began to think I was dirty and that I was going to hell. Can you imagine what that feels like for a kid who was just learning to read and perform basic arithmetic? It was awful.

And talk about guilt - I was a Baptist attending Catholic school!

I prayed the silent prayer for God to change me every chance I got until I started attending college in New York. That's when common sense began to take hold and I realized that no amount of prayer would change me into something that wasn't natural to me.

With my religious upbringing, I'd had the opportunity to study religious doctrine. But I learned from different perspectives, from Catholic Mass on Fridays to Baptist services on Sundays to vacation Bible school in the summer to Bible study with a Jehovah's Witness as a teenager.

As I got older I began to realize that all these people and institutions interpreted the Bible somewhat differently. I had a sort of epiphany: the Bible was about the lessons you learned, not about the events or words.

When I became old enough, intelligent enough and logical enough to discern the difference between metaphor and reality, everything changed. I realized that Jonah living in the belly of a whale was a parable written in the same vein as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. saying that he had "been to the mountaintop."

Neither Jonah nor King had actually been to those places. They were metaphors for lessons for those of us who cared to absorb them.

So many of us, especially in the black community and in churches, tend to think that religious teachings happened word for word as they were written in Scripture. I think that's naïve, even dangerous.

That type of thinking - or non-thinking - keeps many religious people enslaved to beliefs that they haven't truly stepped back from and examined.

That type of thinking causes people who are otherwise good to shun and ostracize young gay people.

It causes people to want to control and change people who aren't like them. And who wants to be like someone else?

Imagine if we had allowed Christian doctrines and teachings that supported slavery, segregation and the subjugation of women to pervade our society all the way up until the current moment. What kind of world would that be?

Instead, we got on our knees, just as I did as a little boy, and prayed that slavery, segregation and the subjugation of women would end. In the United States, at least, those prayers have largely been realized.

I'm no longer the member of any church but I do believe in a higher power.

It's time for us, especially black people, to stop trying to pray the gay away and to get on our knees and start praying that the discrimination of gay people ends.

What we're doing to our young gay people now is child abuse. It's plain old bigotry and hatred. And if African-Americans don't know what that feels like in America, I don't know who does.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Don Lemon.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Opinion

soundoff (4,733 Responses)
  1. illuminated Genius

    If the whole world turned gay tomorrow all humanity would die off you all realize that right? What is wrong with this picture?

    May 23, 2011 at 1:47 am |
    • dalis

      Watch out. They're tunneling under your house. 😉

      May 23, 2011 at 1:50 am |
    • Observer

      What is wrong with this picture is the lack of genius in the logic. You don't have to be hetero to have children. I can't believe I have to reference an adult to the birds and the bees.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:52 am |
    • Chris

      Yes, that's true, but a very small population of the human race is gay, so there isn't going to be a shortage of people any time soon. In fact, with the current world population growing out of control, it's good that more people who are gay are coming out instead of marrying someone they aren't attracted to and making more babies. But like you said, people who are gay – usually – don't have children, so it's not like it's going to get passed on as a trait to the entire species.

      In other words, you have NOTHING to worry about. Gay people aren't going to take over the human race. Get a hold of yourself!

      May 23, 2011 at 2:30 am |
    • Facts

      What's wrong with the picture is that someone thinks everyone on Earth, INCLUDING the author of the comment(!!) would somehow turn gay tomorrow. That's like saying everyone on the planet will turn Female, or German, or some other totally unrealistic occurrence. Meanwhile, the Earth's population is exploding, NOT SHRINKING, at an alarming rate. How many people live in China now? More than 1.3 Billion. And that's just China! So, to sum up, if the whole world turned gay tomorrow, YOU, illuminated Genius, would be gay TOO! And I won't even go into in vitro fertilization. Have an aware day!

      May 23, 2011 at 2:37 am |
    • Faithful

      It's not an all or nothing proposition. Stop buying into the whole hysterical, paranoid Gay Agenda propaganda that pretends they want to "convert" everyone. That's bull. They just want to live their lives without being demonized.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:59 am |
    • Joe

      Oh my gosh, you're right!! What was Don Lemon THINKING?! If everyone comes out of the closet, we're going to RUN OUT OF PEOPLE!! And then what? Good heavens! There's no time to come out, write articles on CNN or even comment on them– we should all be busy reproducing, before it's too late!!

      May 23, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • Joe

      "illuminated genius." Love the ironic username!

      May 23, 2011 at 1:53 pm |
    • Dant

      As if lack of humans is a big problem right now, hahaah!

      Allow me to entertain your ridiculous and unnecessary mental exercise: Artificial insemination exists. The end.
      Should we apply your stupid logic to everything? What if tomorrow everyone in the world became a scientist? No one would be left to farm the land! We would all starve! Kill all scientists!

      May 24, 2011 at 1:36 pm |
  2. TacoSalad

    This guy acts like hes the only gay man to ever come out. what a joke.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:46 am |
  3. dina

    Dear Don Lemon.I have been watching and admiring you as a journalist for a long time. I think you are sensitive to people but honest in asking questions that need to be answered. Telling this world that you are Gay, I know may have felt difficult, but you need to be so proud of yourself in every way. You are who you are and you will live better knowing who you are.Keep reporting the news, keep writing...keep being who you are. I am from New Orleans but I have been living in Minnesota since Katrina. Miss livingi n the south with all its problems everyday. Some people are prejudiced but some people are just downright friendly. Eventually people will begin to see that to judge someone is not a Christian thing to do .Love you, love your reporting, love your honesty and you are damn cute. ( I am old enough to be your mama).

    May 23, 2011 at 1:46 am |
    • Rachel

      This sounds like nothing more than a serious crush over a gay man.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:15 am |
  4. Faithful

    According to Jesus, it is not necessary to fight evil, only to do good. He even died, executed as an innocent man without a word in His own defense, to prove it. So if you think your duty as a Christian is to go around making other people miserable because you think they're doing something wrong, then you're missing the whole point of the Gospel. Jesus would say, "Whoever has no sin throw the first stone." So mind your own business and be excellent to others. Jesus also discouraged unwelcome proselytizing, so save it for someone who is seeking it. God will hook you up. No need to go out of your way to annoy people.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:45 am |
    • allfaith

      Thank-you for your words Faithful. Peace to you. Peace to all.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:17 am |
    • Rachel

      I pray for serial killers, men who lust over little children and all other dysfunctional human beings, in the hopes that they do not reach the burning pits. But I do not support them, either. I only pray for them.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:17 am |
    • billy Wingarden

      thanks for helping me believe that all christians are not hateful bigots, always needing someone to demonize to make themselves feel better re their own inadequacies.

      so many of whom , btw are secretly gay, terriifed and in denial demonize other gay people to hide who they are.

      May 24, 2011 at 12:17 am |
  5. buffoon

    Keep in mind that civilizations (hence morality/goodness/e vilness) existed way before any of today's religions.

    People are confused – religions are not the foundation of morality; morality is the foundation of religions.

    All religions are the subjugation of self AND others. No more; no less. Without it, religions can't exist.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:43 am |
  6. Esther

    "I realized that Jonah living in the belly of a whale was a parable written in the same vein as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. saying that he had "been to the mountaintop."

    Neither Jonah nor King had actually been to those places. They were metaphors for lessons for those of us who cared to absorb them."

    What he says here is not true at all. There has been historical evidence, that proves that this happening is NOT a parable, but is a an actual historic event. Alot of the stories in the Bible have evidence to back them up,, all a person has to do is really research.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:43 am |
    • Q

      @Esther – Are you seriously suggesting a human being lived inside a "great fish" for three days?

      May 23, 2011 at 1:55 am |
    • Q

      I mean really? Even ICR and AIG threw in the towel on this one ("Miracle!"). Apparently, your definition of "research" involves suspension of not just reason, but common sense altogether (not to mention the most basic biology)...

      May 23, 2011 at 2:08 am |
    • Over It


      Feel free to spend your time digging in the Middle East for the bones of that great fish with the human-life-sustaining chamber in its belly. In fact, go ahead and spend lots of time at it.

      Please don't take time to reproduce. And please don't vote.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:19 am |
    • Faithful

      It wasn't a whale, it was an alien spaceship, only they didn't have the vocabulary to properly describe it at the time. 😉

      May 23, 2011 at 2:31 am |
  7. buffoon

    My Faith: How I learned to stop 'praying away the gay'

    OK, how did you learn to start 'praying away the gay' in the first place? Get rid of that 'entire' stupid source of problems.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:42 am |
    • Dennis

      How did I learn to start praying the gay away?

      I learned in my church...the Church of the Nazarene. I LOVED going to church. I loved being a part of my youth group and of my youth choir. I always knew that I was different, from a VERY young age. I knew after about 10 that I was "gay". I went to my pastor for advice...I got the, "As long as you pray with your whole heart, Jesus will hear you and cure you." Man, I have never prayed so hard for anything in my life. Later, I went to Eastern Nazarene College...still trying to pray the gay away. I dated girls, figured that was all that was left for me...had to be! I couldn't pray anymore! Here I am now15 years later, still loving God, still loving Church and still gay. Yes, the Church still teaches that if you pray hard enough and with your whole heart, God will cure you. Guess what folks...there is NOTHING WRONG WITH YOU!!!

      May 23, 2011 at 2:34 am |
  8. Rachel

    Don, you were just too young when you thought you discovered an attraction to boys. You saw them as an outlet and enjoyment to whatever it was, going on in your own home. Many kids who end up being gay come from broken homes and from abuse.

    Where was your mother through all of this Mame stuff? Right there has me wondering.

    I believe being gay is a choice.......... PERIOD. I also realize how gays are so readily ready to denounce God and, instead, call something a "higher power". This is purely denial in is most aggressive form, simply to justify this dysfunctional behavior.

    Gay is by choice, and you are not born with it. Sorry to burst any one's bubble here but that's the deal. You were made to reproduce your way, I was made to reproduce my way, so that mankind will continue.

    If human beings were suddenly BORN THIS WAY (being gay), there goes mankind...... and human existence.

    Being gay IS a choice whether by a sound mind or not.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:41 am |
    • joe

      you said: I BELIEVE.... yadda yadda yadda.... PERIOD."
      Are you Infallible? Can you be wrong? oh you can? ok, so which things that you believe are you wrong about? Oh, you dont know which ones. Ok....... maaaaaaaybe this one? No? How do you know?

      Of course gays are disinclined to be christians. Not because they are shirking responsibility though – imagine if you were born into a religion that told you it was a sin to be a girl. Imagine if your religion told you that if you only believed strongly enough, and prayed for help sincerely enough, that god would help you change from being a girl. so, as someone who wants to fit into your own family, you tried. you cry your eyes out, trying to change who you are – yet to no avail. It doesn't make you a boy, and it doesn't stop judgmental assh0les from declaring it's your fault for choosing to be a girl. The only way you could deal with that religion is to leave it, and I wouldnt blame you. but those same assh0les would probably tell you your faith wasnt strong enough and any time you want to come back, god will help you become a boy.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:50 am |
    • noonoogoogoo

      And the Nobel prize for Medicine for 2011 goes to Rachel. She has discovered something that many could not. Her conculsion that Gay children are a byproduct of dysfunctional marriages are a result of a study of 200000 broken marriages and prospective follow up over 20 years of all the progeny from those marriages. She also had a control arm of "successful" marriages that showed an Odds ratio of <1 of the kids being gay with a p < 0.001. Commendable work indeed. Or Rachel, did you pick up this info from Faux news?

      May 23, 2011 at 1:51 am |
    • Rachel

      Wow, and I take the bow! Thank you!!!

      May 23, 2011 at 2:02 am |
    • Becky

      If being gay is a choice then when did you choose to be straight? I'm just sayn. . .

      May 23, 2011 at 2:11 am |
    • Rachel

      I had choices when I hit puberty. I could have gone either way. However, I knew in my heart and body what I was made for, and that was to one day reproduce. Our Creator, our higher power or whatever you would want to call it, made me this way and I was intelligent enough to know this.

      Ignorance makes bad, bad choices.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:14 am |
    • Becky

      sound like a self loathing gay (sorry i hit enter too soon I suck at typing)

      May 23, 2011 at 2:31 am |
    • Dennis

      Rachel, when did you decide to be straight? Cuz the day that you woke up in the morning and made that decision to like the peep is the same day that I woke up in the morning and decided I would like the peep. I didn't choose to be this way, I just am...and guess what? I'm good at it! I'm good at being me and tired of trying to hide in the closet ot make YOU people more comfortable.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:36 am |
    • Info


      being gay isn't a choice. just like being straight isn't. my opinion is that it's natural and a normal aspect of human se-xu-ality. the American Psychological As-sociation in 1975 removed it from it's list of mental diseases. s-ex is a more greater subject with not just reproductive characteristics, but psychological and social too. When your in love the se-xual organs don't matter. Ho-mose-xual behavior occurs very frequently in nature, so it is by definition natural. Humans ARE animals.

      Scientific researchers specializing in human se-xuality have repeatedly shown that ho-mose-xuality is genetic, and have shown genetic research using family and twin methodologies has produced consistent evidence that genes influence se-xual orientation and The survival of a human predisposition for ho-mose-xuality can be explained by se-xual orientation being a polygenetic trait that is influenced by a number of genes.

      It's easy to hate, bash, and be ignorant to the people you know nothing about.

      Why would anyone willfully choose to be gay? Knowing the only thing that awaits them in our society is discrimination, Hate, loneliness, isolation, and injustice.

      May 23, 2011 at 3:12 am |
    • billy Wingarden

      so you put yourself above all the mainstream medical and psych associations that say being gay is a built in emotion, just as beign str8 is a built in emoition for most of us.

      You remiond me of the "holy" inquisition when the church burned books, burned people at the stake etc if they dared to challenge the church.

      And included in the burned and forbidden books were books on the body – the beginning of medical science. The church was horrified that if people learned about medicine, they would stop praying and paying the church to cure them.

      And btw the banned book biz continued until 1966.

      And btw – when did you choosle to be str8.

      I only wish that being gay was a choice. if it was, I'm sure that we could get 30-40% of the people to become gay. And then we could destroy the evil churches................

      who say being gay is wrong. BTW the its a choice is nothing but the old trick of blaming the victim who you are hating and denying their humanity.

      Your judgement will come back to bite you when the pearly gates dont open for you, but the trap door to hell opens instead

      May 24, 2011 at 12:26 am |
  9. Geraldine Coleman



    May 23, 2011 at 1:41 am |
    • dalis

      Good question. The answer is that God doesn't condemn people for being gay.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:48 am |
    • joe

      dunno, the same reason he makes us attracted to underage 16 year old girls when we're 17?

      May 23, 2011 at 2:01 am |
    • Rachel

      God wouldn't condemn a gay person who sleeps with the same gender any more than he wouldn't condemn a grown man who lusts for children, a serial killer who kills or any other dysfunctional behavioral pattern known to man.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:12 am |
    • joe

      once again, rachel. a mortal, fallible woman, who knows all things supernatural, the nature of god, and understands gayness to a level no biologist does.

      And is humble.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:15 am |
    • Rachel

      Joe, with every comment you make, you only show more of your ignorance. Please... do something more constructive than following me around in here and looking like a fool.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:19 am |
  10. allfaith

    It's time for people to question their beliefs and acknowledge what the world has become because of them. No one has to prove their worth as humans. All people are equal as individuals and deserving of respect.
    There is a misconception in the American culture that those who are stronger physically, or are part of the stronger group are better people and have the right to impose their views upon the rest, but that will never be true. Remember, the meek shall inherit the earth, and the meek are those who think of peace and act upon those thoughts. They are not those that attack and find fault, or bully and judge.
    How can you find peace if you are forever stuck in a cycle of violence?
    Thank-you for making it clear that you understand the ignorance and do not place blame, Don. You are a wise man.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:40 am |
  11. Celestiela

    You know what, Don? I firmly believe that God hears our prayers, even if we don't get the answer we want or in the time frame that we expect. If God made you that way, then I think that God has something for you to learn or someone else to teach in his name. And no amount of prayer will make God change his mind about the mission that he gave you. You are one of my favorite anchors on CNN and while there are people who will line up to cast the first stone, there are many more who support you and appreciate your abilities as a journalist. Maybe your story will inspire a family struggling through acceptance of a gay family member. Maybe it will create conversation about God and religion. We cannot know the extent of the impact of your story and who you are. And so God answered your prayer by making you ok with yourself, but not changing you at all. And all of the religious folks who want to criticize your struggle to come to terms with who you are, they are forgetting what Christ said one of the greatest commandments were. "Love thy neighbor as thyself." We don't know what plan God has set forth for his children, and so we should keep our short-sighted, judgmental condemnations to ourselves.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:38 am |
    • allfaith

      Thank-you Celestiela. You have a good heart.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:52 am |
    • Rachel

      Beautifully said, Celestiela, however....... lest not forget that most gay folks will deny our Creator simply for the perfect justification in being gay. How can God, our Creator of all things, allow such a dysfunctional behavior to exist when, if it overcame the world, would end all of mankind as we have known it?

      May 23, 2011 at 2:08 am |
    • Faithful

      You're kidding, right? The Bible is full of dysfunction, starting with Adam & Eve getting evicted from Paradise, Cain killing Able, then things just got worse until God had to start over with the Flood. After thre destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Lots daughters took turns getting their father drunk and seducing them so they could have children; Jacob cheated his brother Easau out of his birthright; after Judah broke his word to his daughter-in-law Tamar, she tricked him into knocking her up by pretending to be a harlot; and David seemed to be REALLY close to Saul's son Jonathan - I mean, to say "how could God allow such dysfunction" is tremendously naive.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:25 am |
  12. Geraldine Coleman


    May 23, 2011 at 1:37 am |
    • Rachel

      Exactly. And I, too, do not support any dysfunctional state of mind as the types you mention here.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:38 am |
    • Michael Wong

      Do you believe that your ignorant tripe sounds more reasonable IF YOU SCREAM AT PEOPLE IN ALL-CAPS?

      May 23, 2011 at 1:45 am |
    • dalis

      No true saint declares themselves a saint. They work out their salvation with fear and trembling.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:45 am |
    • Rachel

      Michael, grow up and get a life rather than trying to pick on someone over how they type. If you don't like it, simply leave this blog.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:49 am |
    • billy Wingarden

      Geraldine is probably jsut another pseudonym for Rachel.

      The other likely possibility is she is a member of the hate groups like NOM, FRC and AFA.

      May 24, 2011 at 12:31 am |
    • billy Wingarden

      Geraldine is probably jsut another pseudonym for Rachel.

      The other likely possibility is she is a member of the hate groups like NOM, FRC and AFA.

      Who have their roving bands of blogers sent on on missions to spread lies, inuendo , hate and paranoia about gay folk.s

      thats how they interpret Jesus commandments to love thy neighbor as thyself.

      May 24, 2011 at 12:33 am |
    • Dant


      May 24, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  13. Geraldine Coleman


    PSALMS 14:1

    May 23, 2011 at 1:32 am |
  14. Geraldine Coleman


    What do you think this scripture means?

    May 23, 2011 at 1:30 am |
    • dalis

      Paul is describing a community of people who have succ-umbed to idolatry. That's not my interpretation; that's what Paul tells the reader explicitly. These people had previously had hetero relations – ie. straight people – but when they idolized the body, they only cared about getting off. It's an admonition against lust, period, not against gay love. It's precisely in arrogantly thinking that such an admonition could not possibly apply to the reader of this epistle that made the next passage in 2:1 so necessary.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:47 am |
  15. Geraldine Coleman

    O.K. I read this and now what. Does it change ROMANS 1: 24-32??

    May 23, 2011 at 1:27 am |
    • dalis

      Not at all, but it might change you if you have a mind to be convicted.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:31 am |
    • Faithful

      Romans 1 is about idolatry, not se xuality.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:35 am |
  16. Joe

    The Christianists commenting here have quite simply lost all credibility. Not only has the organization which they support, the Catholic Church, systemically abused children, but their reference manual, the Bible, is terribly outdated. No one would practice dentistry using 2,000+ year-old methods, nor should they practice life with them. And if you do believe that your deity made things in a certain way that defies revision, take off your reading glasses, because he meant for you to see blurry. You're already thinking that way, so it shouldn't be too much of an adjustment for you.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:26 am |
    • Rachel

      I am not a Christian but I believe gay behavior is a choice. You are not born with it, but is a developed part of one's life. It is a learned thing, most likely stemming from abuse or neglect of some sort from the home life.

      Some gays claim they had a perfect family, full of love. Perhaps there was 'too much' love. No family is perfect but guidance is what dictates our lives into adulthood.

      You are not attracted to the same gender once puberty hits (or, moreso, even before then!) unless something steered you that way.

      Gay is by choice, and nothing more.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:47 am |
    • joe

      "perhaps there was too much love." ???????????
      so literally, no matter what the evidence is, it serves to confirm your belief that being gay is a choice, cased by.... something – anything. maybe too little love, maybe too much love.... anything other than admit possibly it is not a choice and possibly people who are gay know more about being gay than you.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:10 am |
  17. Atheist Prophet

    Time to pray away the church for its crimes against humanity. All it does is hurt and divide. It is good for this man to realize that he was right and the church was wrong. Ban the church! Cleanse religion!

    May 23, 2011 at 1:24 am |
    • Anon

      nah, let the gullible masses keep the church
      I need something to laugh at

      May 23, 2011 at 1:27 am |
  18. Geraldine Coleman


    May 23, 2011 at 1:24 am |
    • dalis

      LOL Maybe he'll hear you if you type louder.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:29 am |
    • Observer

      The Bible also supports slavery, the inferiority of women, and discrimination against the handicapped.

      So what was your point?

      May 23, 2011 at 1:37 am |
    • Joe

      Yes, the comments in ALL CAPS are especially poignant....

      May 23, 2011 at 1:52 pm |
  19. Bt

    I thought there would be something new here. Same old nonsense.

    Why do gay people always claim they have known since they were four or five years old? I work with young kids, and almost none of them have these kinds of crushes at that age, and if they do, it's usually goofy kid nonsense. It's almost like an urban myth they have to believe.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:23 am |
    • Observer

      How old were you when you decided to become hetero? Were you close to selecting gay?

      May 23, 2011 at 1:42 am |
    • Ernie

      Um, yeah:


      And you're right. It does happen hardly ever. Like only about 4% of the time. But at 5 they just seem to be "that weird sissy boy who plays with dolls with the girls all the time". And even then, that's only when it's really obvious. For example, lots of gay men are the macho types who play sports and are big on kickboxing and drink Budweiser. So it never becomes obvious to them until they're showering with other kids in high school and puberty has set in properly. So that reduces the number to less than 2% of kids in grade 1.

      Suffice to say though, when you're 6 and you like playing with girls more than boys, you're going to get a lot of other kids and grownups telling them to stop being sissies at best and beating them out of their gayness at worst. If that's not child abuse, I don't know what is.

      May 23, 2011 at 1:57 am |
    • Dant

      I remember liking girls in 2nd grade fairly clearly. It may have been nonsense, but I never felt that way towards guys. I knew I was straight, even if I didn't know the word yet. Couldn't it be the same for a gay person?

      May 24, 2011 at 1:43 pm |
  20. Darrell Barker

    Don, I appreciate you coming out, a brave and honest are you. Now, just get rid of your faith in God and Jesus and you'll be THE MAN.

    May 23, 2011 at 1:21 am |
    • Rachel

      Oh yeah, just perfect. Put denial into our Creator and ... whammo! You've got the perfect justification for being gay!!

      Sometimes I am amazed that I am even part of this sick human race.

      May 23, 2011 at 2:05 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.