Ben Carson has said LGBT Americans shouldn’t be given new rights. Carson is undergoing confirmation hearings for the role of Secretary for Housing and Urban Development. HUD oversees social housing programs throughout the country.
Carson was asked about his attitude toward laws that protect LGBT people living in public housing. Carson’s conservative Christian views and previous comments on the LGBT community have raised concerns about his approach to enforcing public housing protections.
“Of course, I would enforce all the laws of the land. Of course, I think all Americans should be protected by the law,” Carson said. “What I have said before is I don’t think anyone should get ‘extra rights’.”
The idea that LGBT Americans are seeking ‘extra rights’ is a common argument used by conservatives who are unhappy with expanding protections for LGBT citizens. Many conservative Christians have complained that businesses are being compelled to sell to LGBT people, which violates their religious beliefs.
Laws regarding ‘religious freedom’ may become more prominent this year as state legislatures feel empowered by Donald Trump’s election victory. Several states have already proposed ‘bathroom bills’ designed to prevent transgender people from using the restroom of their choice. New measures to restrict the freedom of LGBT Americans are encouraged by conservatives in the name of safety.