The cable network A&E has decided to "indefinitely suspend" one of the stars of their highest rated television show, 'Duck Dynasty'. Phil, the Robertson family patriarch, has received backlash for comments he made to 'GQ' magazine for their January 2014 issue.
In the interview, the duck call inventor goes on record with comments about the sinfulness of gays and black people under Jim Crow that are very backwards in modern thought.
In his magazine profile (Found Here), an unedited Robertson sounds off on what's ailing the country during a trip through the Louisiana backwoods.
“Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men,” he tells reporter Drew Magary. “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.”
He also muses about his own sexual orientation: “It seems like, to me, a vagina—as a man—would be more desirable than a man’s anus. That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”
GLAAD rep Wilson Cruz responded to Robertson's remarks with a statement:
"Phil and his family claim to be Christian, but Phil's lies about an entire community fly in the face of what true Christians believe. He clearly knows nothing about gay people or the majority of Louisianans -- and Americans -- who support legal recognition for loving and committed gay and lesbian couples.
"Phil's decision to push vile and extreme stereotypes is a stain on A&E and his sponsors who now need to reexamine their ties to someone with such public disdain for LGBT people and families."
In a quote that may raise even more eyebrows than his feelings about gays, Robertson claims he "never" saw black people mistreated during the pre-civil rights era in his home state, and strongly suggests that African Americans were more content under Jim Crow.
"Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I'm with the blacks, because we're white trash," he said. "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!... Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”
In what is likely a move to keep the show non-political, the head of the family doesn't appear to be back on the program anytime soon. The family does not stray from religion on occasion, each episode ends with a family prayer over dinner, but has never been a focal point to the show. The show is a ratings success in nearly all areas of the country and A&E is likely deeming it necessary to do damage control immediately.