The “man-on-street” interview is rarely an insightful exercise in news gathering, but sometimes it can be a revealing window into American culture — like in the video above, where residents of a small Colorado town are asked, “When did you choose to be straight?”
The video features advertising executive and amateur photographer Travis Nuckolls and Buzzfeed Labs’ Chris Baker asking a bunch of straight people about homosexuality. Many of those interviewed say they think being gay “depends on upbringing” and “has a lot to do with development.” But when the question gets flipped and the subjects are asked when they decided to be straight, they struggle to find an answer.
“That’s a good call,” says one man, laughing nervously. “I didn’t choose to be.”
Not all those interviewed say they think being gay is a choice, however. In perhaps the most profound comment in the video, one woman sums up her views about “choosing” to be gay: “If [gay people] were gonna choose a lifestyle, that’s not one they would have chosen. It’s too difficult.”
Disclaimer: This video was actually filmed back in 2008, but it recently came across our radar after Upworthy’s Rebecca Eisenberg posted it to the site’s LGBTQQ section. Props to Boing Boing for discovering this back in 2010.