The patriarch of the network’s hit show and self-proclaimed “Bible-thumper” called “homosexual behavior” a sin, equating it with other sins like bestiality and promiscuity.
“We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson’s comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series ‘Duck Dynasty,’” A&E said in a statement. “His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been supporters and champions of the LGBT community.”
The end result: “The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.”
That was fast. But A&E was under a particularly harsh glare as Robertson’s quotes went viral, and Human Rights Campaign and GLAAD both condemned his comments. And “Duck Dynasty,” as you may know, is the network’s biggest hit in history, and has continued to shatter ratings records. The show returns with new episodes on Jan. 15.
Earlier, the HRC, the influential gay-rights lobby, weighed in: “As a role model on a show that attracts millions of viewers, Phil Robertson has a responsibility to set a positive example for young Americans – not shame and ridicule them because of who they are,” HRC president Chad Griffin said in a statement, and asked for A&E to condemn Robertson’s remarks and “make clear they don’t support his views.” GLAAD called the remarks “vile.”
Meanwhile, Robertson released a statement early Wednesday saying his mission is to follow what the Bible teaches, which is that “women and men are meant to be together,” but clarified that he loves “all of humanity.”
Source: Washington Post