Julie Bindel: You can choose to be gay – I chose to live my life as a lesbian

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Feminist writer Julie Bindel has claimed that gay and lesbian people can choose to be attracted to people of the same sex.

She told the Independent: “I think the opposite of having an innate, biological explanation – there’s no evidence for that – has to be some kind of choice, as well as some deep-rooted, embedded responses that developed through different experiences in our childhood.

“It can’t be that there is a difference in our brains, because it would have been discovered by now… it has obsessed scientists for a long time.

“I don’t think it’s a choice like which washing powder to buy.”

Speaking about her personal experience, she said: “I needed to leave home – there was nothing there for me in Darlington – and pursue my feminist possibilities, that meant starting a new life and all that was open to me.

“I fell in with a crowd [in Leeds] who spoke about lesbianism as part of women’s liberation. I never chose to be attracted to women.”

“I could have stayed where I was in Darlington and gone along the path that was predestined for me [marriage to a man]. I chose to live my life as an out and proud lesbian.

“I’m not the only person saying this. I’ve met a huge number of lesbians who say, ‘I don’t believe I was born that way, and I believe any woman can be a lesbian and believe we’re stopped from feeling sexual attraction to the same sex because of external pressure’.

“For women who live under a compulsory heterosexual model, it can be liberating.

“All I know is I’ve never been convinced by a scientific argument, or seen any evidence that is compelling that there is something innate about our sexuality.

“What I’m suggesting is, there are people who could go one way or the other and happily choose to be lesbian or gay.”

Last January, Bindel claimed that a “trans cabal” were “running a witch hunt” against people who offended them when she defended a tweet from columnist Suzanne Moore that read: “People can just fuck off really. Cut their dicks off and be more feminist than me. Good for them.”.

She has also claimed that gay marriage is “a waste of time and effort”, and claimed that the term “queer” was being used by “anyone who is into kinky sex”.

Correction: The headline of this article originally read: “Being gay is a choice”, but was later changed to: “You can choose to be gay.”