The Ben Carson Omnibus

Current Presidential candidate and Republican Party front runner Ben Carson is almost as quote-worthy as former 2016 GOP poll leader Donald Trump. Where Trump was the brash self-assured billionaire son-of-another-billionaire, Ben Carson is the neurosurgeon who is soft-spoken to a potentially un-electable fault. Politico slams aside, Carson and Trump have other similarities worthy of note; namely, their adherence to some very strange beliefs.

Now, this is not a slam on either candidates’ religious beliefs. Ben Carson is a Seventh Day Adventist and Trump claims to be Presbyterian. Trump’s strange beliefs, at least one, stem from his untested assertion that vaccines cause illness and are inherently dangerous to children in the levels in which they are currently administered: Trump is an Antivaxxer. Though several GOP candidates, including Ben Carson, weighed in on vaccines in the first GOP Presidential debate, Trump was both previously vocal on the issue and seemed unswerving during the debate, though he avoided claiming that vaccines cause autism during the debate.

Ben Carson’s claims, quotes, and logical fallacies can be seen in the following articles. They are not meant to demean the presidential hopeful, but are a rather eloquent example of how a man who is held in both professional esteem, medical good repute, and (potential) political power may also believe things that are neither a matter of his Christian faith (for they are not found in the Bible), religious tutelage (because each church teaches different interpretations of the Bible and church members may take on different understandings from these teachings), and that would go against a scientifically minded individual’s desire to test a theory and discard those claims not supported by evidence.

Egyptian Pyramids were used to store grain.

Story by Tierney Sneed, Talking Points Memo

“My own personal theory is that Joseph built the pyramids to store grain,” Carson said. “Now all the archeologists think that they were made for the pharaohs’ graves. But, you know, it would have to be something awfully big if you stop and think about it. And I don’t think it’d just disappear over the course of time to store that much grain.”

In the video surfaced by Buzzfeed Wednesday, Carson goes on to lay out his argument that the pyramids were constructed for grain storage.

“And when you look at the way that the pyramids are made, with many chambers that are hermetically sealed, they’d have to be that way for various reasons,” Carson said. “And various of scientists have said, ‘well, you know there were alien beings that came down and they have special knowledge and that’s how-’ you know, it doesn’t require an alien being when God is with you.”

Carson Believes Vaccines Cause Autism
Well, maybe he doesn’t really, but as this Slate article points out, both Rand Paul are respected medical professionals and their offhanded discussion of medicine during an internationally broadcast debate seems to lend credibility to unfounded pseudoscience.

Ben Carson, a renowned neurosurgeon and the presidential candidate standing to the right of Trump on the stage, attempted to correct Trump’s assertion, explaining that there is well-documented proof that autism is not associated with vaccinations.

Unfortunately, Carson went on to promote another fear-driven myth about vaccines. He added that “we are probably giving way too many in too short a period of time.” There is not a shred of scientific evidence to back this up. Rand Paul, an ophthalmologist and another candidate on the stage, echoed his fellow doctor’s concerns about bunching vaccines.

Both of these physicians have had great accomplishments in the medical world, Carson as a pioneer neurosurgeon and Paul as a successful eye surgeon. As a fellow physician it was unsettling to me to see them speculating wildly outside their areas of expertise, especially in the wake of Trump’s dangerous comments. They should have known better.

 

Being gay is a choice because prison turns people gay

Carson now infamously said in a CNN interview in March that homosexuality is a choice, citing people who “go into prison straight – and when they come out, they’re gay” as proof. He later attempted to apologize for the remarks in which he addressed those who were offended, but reinforced his belief that sexual orientation is chosen.

Carson has also called marriage equality a “Marxist plot,” described marriage equality supporters as “enemies of America,” and compared homosexuality to pedophilia and bestiality, another statement that led him to similarly “apologize” for his “poorly chosen words.”

There’s no such thing as a war crime

Carson also said earlier this year that the U.S. should not hesitate to send troops to defeat the Islamic State and should not fear prosecution for its actions. In the Fox News interview, he said he would “not hesitate to put boots on the ground” and suggested that the military should not be subject to any war crimes law.

“If you’re gonna have rules for war, you should just have a rule that says no war,” he said. “Other than that, we have to win.”

Obamacare is the worst thing since slavery

Back in 2013, when Carson was still gaining recognition in the Republican Party, he said in a speech that “Obamacare is really I think the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery.”

“And it is in a way, it is slavery in a way, because it is making all of us subservient to the government, and it was never about health care,” he added. “It was about control.”

Carson has continued to speak out about Obama’s health care plan, saying this year that it’s “a bunch of crap” that politicians say they can’t unravel the legislation.

[Someone or some people in Government are] depressing the economy to keep people on welfare

After appearing on The View last year and saying that Americans have become dependent on welfare, Carson elaborated on Fox News. “Do you think that people who are on welfare want to be on welfare?” Fox’s Megyn Kelly asked him.

“I think some people have that as a way of life,” Carson responded, later adding that “perhaps some of the things that are going on right now which could be easily remedied are not being remedied in order to keep the economy depressed because there would be no appetite for many of the social programs if people were doing well.”

When pressed by Kelly, Carson wouldn’t name Obama but said there are “some people” taking these actions.

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