Before Hawaii became the 15th state to legalize gay marriage, the bill reached a tipping point in our favor when it went through the public comment process. More than 1,000 people showed up to testify, friend and foe, stretching the hearing on the measure to a sometimes tedious, sometimes dramatic 57 hours over five days. As we look back at the many people that voiced an opinion, one man stands out as a MVP, Dean Hamer.
Hamer is a geneticist who during his two minutes of testimony calmly used scientific studies to explain to the House why the scientific community has “concluded that sexual orientation is a deeply engraved innate trait with strong genetic and biological roots.”
Or, when asked for layman’s terms, “Being gay in’t a choice.”
His prepared remarks are solid (if a little over my head) but it is what happens after that makes his testimony so fabulous. For the next ten minutes his facts are challenged by stereotypes, his education is mocked and scientific research as a whole is disregarded by those elected officials scrambling to hold on to a fading world view.
Dean Hamer responds to it all with humor, supported evidence and a few well-timed eye rolls. The video is on the long side in the Youtube world but worth watching as it depicts the victory of the scientific mind over bigotry, something we are looking forward to seeing more of these days.
Thank you Mr. Hamer and congratulations Hawaii.