Makin’ the scene at the asylum

I have no doubt that here in America there are many doctors and surgeons who have become rich and successful beyond their wildest desires, and they’re now as wingnutty as Nazi Gruppenführers. But so far there’s only one Ben Carson.

New Day host Chris Cuomo then segued into another issue snaking through the court system — same-sex marriage — and asked Carson whether he believed being gay was a choice.

“Absolutely,” Carson said. “Because a lot of people who go into prison go into prison straight — and when they come out, they’re gay. So, did something happen while they were in there? Ask yourself that question.”

Carson insults decent people here. But he thoroughly spits in the face of some Americans – usually young men – who you may not know much about, and who don’t very often vote.

But then David said something that struck John as strange. He asked him if he would ever get involved sexually with a man. John knew himself to be heterosexual; he had lost his virginity to a girl the year before. “I just kind of laughed it off,” he recalled.

And then it happened. One night after the last count before bed, John says, his cellmate suddenly attacked him, pulling down both of their pants and wrestling him onto the bottom bunk. John tried to resist, but he was less than 140 pounds, and next to David’s bulk of more than 200 he stood little chance as this powerful man forced his way in, slowly and painfully and in silence, without a condom or lubricant.

John was only 17 years old.

Then, one morning around 6 a.m., while out on the yard for recreation, John says he saw David receive a mesh laundry bag from a prisoner he didn’t know. He could see that it contained meat sticks and bags of chips. These kinds of exchanges were common; he figured the other prisoner might be trading the food for the use of his cell as a quiet place for tattooing or some other illicit activity…

That afternoon, John returned to his “house”… His cellmate was in bed. Feeling greasy after his kitchen shift, John started to undress so he could take a shower. As he took off his pants, he saw the mesh bag of food. He looked over and realized the man in the bed was not David. It was the prisoner who had handed over the bag of food.

Wielding an unchecked national evil to attack gay marriage, Carson is quite disgusting. Either that, or I’m ignoring the good that incarceration usually does for peoples’ sex lives. Maybe it’s time we applauded the way our corrections system allows young men to explore their sexuality. And if prison is what a defenseless teenager needs, then I’m all for it. Next up on Hot In America: Dr. Ben cites a few out-of-prison rape statistics and then wonders if the female libido has run amok. I can’t really say I’m all fired-up on the ‘morals’ end of Carson’s superstar campaign, though. As for that gotcha he delivered with, “So, did something happen while they were in there?”:

Although he is still attracted to women, John has a hard time imagining how he’ll form new romantic relationships. He still has flashbacks and nightmares—common symptoms of post-traumatic stress among rape victims, in prison or out—which are sometimes spurred by tiny details: the smell of saliva or shower mold, the feel of tiles like the ones his face was pressed into, a breeze that mimics the breath of an attacker on his neck.