Patriarch off 'Duck Dynasty' after gay comments

Phil Robertson suspended indefinitely.
Associated Press
Dec 19, 2013

"Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson — suspended from the series indefinitely after making disparaging remarks about gays — is getting some support from key followers.

Sarah Palin posted a picture on her Facebook page of her with the reality show clan with the message, "Free Speech is an endangered species." And Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal also lamented the suspension on free speech terms.

"It's a messed-up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh, and Phil Robertson gets suspended," said the governor in a statement Thursday (the show is filmed in his state.

A&E announced Wednesday what it called a "hiatus" for Robertson, 67, after he disparaged gays in the January edition of GQ magazine. He also said that, growing up in Louisiana before the Civil Rights movement, he never saw mistreatment of blacks.

In a statement, A&E said it was extremely disappointed to see Robertson's anti-gay remarks, which it said were based on his personal beliefs and do not reflect those of A&E Networks or the show. A&E Networks, a joint venture of The Walt Disney Co. and Hearst Corp., called itself a supporter of the lesbian and gay community.

The channel's move was lauded by the gay and lesbian media advocacy group GLAAD, which had quickly condemned Robertson's comments.

"What's clear is that such hateful anti-gay comments are unacceptable to fans, viewers, and networks alike," said GLAAD spokesman Wilson Cruz. Robertson's removal "has sent a strong message that discrimination is neither a Christian nor an American value."

Robertson and his extended family became wealthy manufacturing duck calls and were turned into TV and pop culture stars by "Duck Dynasty," which has set cable ratings records for a non-fiction series. Several family members appeared in this year's Macy's Thanksgiving parade.

In his GQ interview, Robertson was asked his definition of sinful behavior.

"Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there," such as bestiality, he said.

GQ said he then paraphrases a biblical reference: "Don't be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers — they won't inherit the kingdom of God. Don't deceive yourself. It's not right."

Robertson and his family had no comment on his hiatus, A&E said on their behalf. He may be in some previously taped scenes when the show returns Jan. 15 for its fifth season, a network spokesman said.

Robertson did respond to initial criticism of his GQ remarks.

"I myself am a product of the '60s" who indulged in sex and drugs until hitting bottom and accepting Jesus as his savior, he said in a statement. Although his mission is to teach people that men and women are meant to be together, Robertson said he "would never treat anyone with disrespect" because they are different.

In the interview, he also said that in his Louisiana youth he picked cotton with African-Americans and never saw "the mistreatment of any black person. Not once."

"We're going across the field.... They're singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, 'I tell you what: These doggone white people' — not a word!" Robertson told the magazine.

A&E said it had received no complaints about those remarks.

 

Comments

Nemesis

They negatively sanctioned him for what he said. The word "censorship" is not limited to unconstitutional govt. activity. The major networks actually have censor committees who review and edit programs. Heck, one can censor oneself.

John Harville

Bherrie... The 'belief this country was founded on' is NOT the First Amendment nor the First Ten Amendments nor the 14th which negated many of the prohibitions in the first 10.

Nemesis

The 14th Amendment did not negate anything in the first 10. It expanded them to be binding on the states.

John Harville

Bherrie.. the Constitution counted a colored man as 3/5 of a white man for the census.
the Constitution did not prohibit SLAVERY.
The Constituion did NOT give women the vote - nor the right to be heard in public (The First Amendment did NOT apply to women).
The Constitution did not provide for ELECTION OF SENATORS.
The Constitution did not provide for a standing military (thus the Second Amendment)
If you don't feel a bit ignorant, maybe you should (MY freedom of speech,there)

Nemesis

You REALLY should consider how much of your house's exterior is windows before throwing the ignorance stone.

-The Constitution said NOTHING about colored versus white. It gave STATES representation based on 100% of their FREE population and 60% of their FREE population, REGARDLESS of race. Those who have only a vague comprehension of history (and with each comment, you increase the impression that you are one of them) love to cite this as some sort of atrocity against blacks on the part of the Founders, when, in fact, it was a strategy to end slavery by diminishing the influence of states that permitted it. The SLAVE STATES wanted to count 100% of their slave population to gain more representation, the better to turn the federal government more in favor of continued slavery. 3/5 was a compromise between them and abolitionists, who didn't want slaves to count at all toward represention.

- The First Amendment absolutely did apply to women, which is why women like Susan B. Anthony were able to organize and advocate for their suffrage.

- The Constitution provided for the appointment of senators by state legislatures. This was neither an oversight, nor the horrible evil you are so eager to imply. It was intended that the two houses of Congress would each represent the states in different ways. Amending to have senators directly elected was a bit of demagoguery to which most of the loss of liberty in the 20th century can be traced.

John Harville

Bherrie... Do you feel the same way about the PR executive fired by her company before she landed in South Africa for tweeting "I'm on my way to South Africa. Hope I don't get AIDS. Oh, I'm white."?

Was her Freedom of Speech violated by her company?

grumpy

I could ask the same about the 10th Amendment. It says what was meant, but the SC found weasel ways to get around it. Same with free speech. It isn't what is written it is what the SC sees in the rest of the Constitution and how they weasel way interpret it. This might be a contract dispute. I don't know what his contract with A&E is, Do you? I highly doubt it is a 1st Amendment case, more likely a contract difference.

John Harville

You need to check the 14th Amendment that kinda dumps the 10th.

Nemesis

The 14th in no way "dumps" the 10th. It makes the Bill of Rights binding on the states, nothing more.

John Harville

Wrong. The Tenth protects anything not specifically given to the government nor denied to it by the Constitution. The 14th extends federal laws to the states... thus saying the Federal government makes laws affective in all states. If that's not nullifying...

Nemesis

Wrong again. The 14th extends the Bill of Rights to the states, NOT legislated federal laws. Federal laws have been overturned by SCOTUS on 10th Amendment grounds in the last 10 years.

Also, your interpretation of the 10th Amendment is wrong, but it looks like that could just be a failure to proofread.

grumpy

I could ask the same about the 10th Amendment. It says what was meant, but the SC found weasel ways to get around it. Same with free speech. It isn't what is written it is what the SC sees in the rest of the Constitution and how they weasel way interpret it. This might be a contract dispute. I don't know what his contract with A&E is, Do you? I highly doubt it is a 1st Amendment case, more likely a contract difference.

White Owl

Employers are not permitted to discriminate against employees based on their religious beliefs (a First Amendment right).

Nemesis

They are when their mission is inherently expressive and the employee's conduct runs afoul of that.

He's also not an employee.

John Harville

White Owl.... go back and read your First Amendment again... "CONGRESS shall make no law...."

"CONGRESS shall not abridge... religion."

Nemesis

Wow, you got one right! The equal employment laws which forbid such discrimination are legislated, not in the Constitution.

White Owl

Again, A&E terminated his contract for employment as an actor on a show. This is not a First Amendment case, but a labor case or contract case.

It is illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of race, gender, handicap, national origin and religious faith. Mr. Robinson expressed the viewpoint of the Christian religion, which teaches promiscuity (whether homosexual or heterosexual)is sinful and leads to separation from God. It is not an act of hatred to point out that certain behaviors are morally deleterious according to a person's religion.

Nemesis

See above for why you're completely wrong about this.

John Harville

Since A&E is running its marathon - and fifth season - will he now sue A&E?

pntbutterandjelly

Thank you for that. It is every bit a much of A&Es right as Mr. Duck's right. The only difference is...A&E KNOWS what is morally correct vs. legally correct. (big difference)

JudgeMeNot

Sarah Palin is soo right. Free Speech is an endangered species.

John Harville

CONGRESS shall make no law.....
Last time I checked A&E is NOT Congress.

pntbutterandjelly

And for some people...it s should be! Unfortunately..."freedom of speech" is not exclusionary of stupidity. 2 bad.

Kmf1984

I just want to know at what point was he hateful. He was asked what his beliefs are and he gave a straight forward response. No where did I read that he said anything about hating gays. He simply does not agree or understand the lifestyle because he is following The Bible.

John Harville

When did Jesus say anything about homosexuality?
Leviticus? No... that's Moses and Jewish law.
Corinthians? No... that's Paul talking about those heathen Romans.

Leviticus also outlaws tattoos (ooo look at all you goin' to hell) and against touching the flesh of a dead hog (hope you never played football) and against eating pork (ooops, there go all you rib-eaters). I can cherry-pick the Bible too.

Nemesis

Except that you don't know enough to understand the difference between cherry picking and the clear differentiation of the different types of commandments.

John Harville

The commandments are MOSAIC.
Jesus came to bring a new law and left us with his own great commandment.

"This is my commandment. I command you to love one another as I have loved you."

Nemesis

So, I guess we can just ignore all that "thou shalt not kill/thou shalt not steal" stuff, eh?

Matthew 5:18 "For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law"

pntbutterandjelly

L O L (not!)

One only needs to look at the man and he has biased ignorance written ALLLL over him. You know it as well as I do. Why do you avoid the truth? "If it walks like a duck...."
Viewpoints like his are grounded in a cesspool of hatred that has long re-dated the Bible. It was Jesus who tried to teach us the virtues of brotherly love. NOT brotherly bias. It really is all quite simple. Mr. Duck has lost his way and the way of the truth.

nobodycares

Why is it ok to be openly , but not ok to be openly Christian ??!!!

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