(The Hill) — Georgia congressional candidate Vernon Jones (R) on Thursday argued that gay rights should not be compared to civil rights for people of color because being gay is a choice.
In an interview with former Trump aide Steve Bannon on his podcast “War Room,” Jones argued that the civil rights movement for African Americans and the civil rights movement for the LGBT community are “two different things.”
“Civil rights for Blacks and civil rights for gays are two different things,” Jones told Bannon. “I don’t know what you are unless you tell me what you are if you’re gay. But when I walk into that room, you can tell that I’m Black from cradle to grave. Let’s not get that confused.”
Jones, who is running for a U.S. House seat in Georgia’s 10th district, has been endorsed by former President Trump.
He told Bannon that members of the LGBT community could change their identity.
“They can actually change. You can go from being straight to being gay to being transgender and all these other genders,” Jones continued. “But when you’re Black, I don’t have a choice. I don’t have a choice. So to compare the two … it rubs me the wrong way.”
Jones initially launched a bid for Georgia governor but announced in February he was dropping out of the race after he met with Trump and the former president had endorsed former Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) for governor.
LGBT rights, specifically revolving around the transgender community, have become a key issue in the lead up to the 2022 midterms.
Republican-led state legislatures across the country have introduced or passed bills that would ban gender-affirming care for transgender youth.
States including Florida, Utah and Alabama have passed legislation that would ban transgender women and girls from participating on the sports team that corresponds with their gender identity.
During Thursday’s interview, Jones accused Democrats of “breaking down the moral fiber and fabric of the African American community” with woke ideology.
“To see what’s happening now, it’s un-American,” Jones added. “It’s going to take conservative African Americans to save the Republican party. Because they saved us from slavery.”