The mayor of a coastal Peruvian town says he’s discovered the reason there are a growing number of gays in his area: the presence of the metal strontium in the local water supply.
“Unfortunately Strontium reduces male hormones and suddenly we’ll be as Tabalosos, as other towns, where the percentages are increasing of homosexuality,” Mayor José Benítez warned the citizens of Huarmey during an opening ceremony for a local water project.
Scientists warn that strontium, which is naturally occurring, can cause bone cancer, anemia and cardiovascular complications in very high doses. No study has ever suggested that it’s tied to sexual behavior.
Benítez’s accusation probably derives from a Peruvian television program several years ago that claimed the population of Tabalosos was predominantly gay. Tabalosos, which is located in Peru’s interior, is the source of water for Huarmey.
Tabolosos Mayor Jorge Luis Vasquez said the myth about Tabalosos has damaged his city’s reputation. He demanded that Benítez either prove his assertion or apologize for it.
“Young people have low self-esteem by this stigma,” Vasquez said.