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Prop 8 trial witness: Being gay is not a choice

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A social psychologist testifying in a trial challenging California's gay marriage ban says leading mental health associations stopped thinking of homosexuality as a mental illness decades ago.

Lawyers for two same-sex couples suing to overturn the voter-enacted ban called University of California, Davis researcher Gregory Herek as an expert witness Friday to bolster their argument that sexual orientation cannot be easily changed. He says the leading mental health groups also take a dim view of therapies aimed at making people heterosexual.

The point is central to their effort to show that gays deserve the same judicial protection as racial and ethnic minorities.

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