Neurosurgeon Ben Carson will still speak at the Johns Hopkins graduation ceremony this spring, following an apology to the university and hospital Friday for statements comparing homosexuality to pedophilia and bestiality when explaining his opposition to gay marriage.
Carson, who offered to withdraw from the ceremony, said he still is opposed to gay marriage, but “there are much less offensive ways to make that point,” reports Politico
. “There are many lessons to be learned when venturing into the political world and this is one I will not forget. I hope all will look at a lifetime of service over some poorly chosen words."
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Carson, the director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital, has been associated with the Maryland university for 36 years, and apologized to the school and hospital for any embarrassment.
“What really saddens me is that my poorly chosen words caused pain for some members of our community and for that I offer a most sincere and heartfelt apology,” he said. “Hurting others is diametrically opposed to who I am and what I believe.”
According to The Huffington Post
, a majority of the School of Medicine's graduating class called Carson, in a petition, an “inappropriate choice” for speaker.
Carson became a conservative hero earlier this year after he slammed President Barack Obama during a speech at the National Prayer Breakfast. Many conservative political leaders and activists have been discussing a 2016 presidential run, which he has not denied.
Some in the Johns Hopkins community called for Carson to withdraw as this year's commencement speaker for the university's medical school. His controversial remarks were made to Fox host Sean Hannity, and he added to the controversy this week after calling white liberals “the most racist people there are.”
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