NEW YORK, December 19, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Abbe Raven, CEO of A&E the media may already be receiving a pile of complaints for having effectively fired Duck Dynasty founding star Phil Robertson after a GQ interview in which he presented his Christian stance against homosexual sex.
The case is unique in America, where firings and punishment for those voicing objection to homosexual sex has become routine. Robertson's has earned a high profile, as the massive popularity of Duck Dynasty coupled with the wholesomeness of the Robertson family has won the hearts of millions.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin have slammed A&E for the move.
Jindal, who is governor of the Robertsons' home state, said in a statement issued on his official website that “Phil Robertson and his family are great citizens of the State of Louisiana.”
“The politically correct crowd is tolerant of all viewpoints, except those they disagree with,” Jindal added.
“I don’t agree with quite a bit of stuff I read in magazine interviews or see on TV. In fact, come to think of it, I find a good bit of it offensive,” he added. “But I also acknowledge that this is a free country and everyone is entitled to express their views. In fact, I remember when TV networks believed in the First Amendment.”
“It is a messed up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh, and Phil Robertson gets suspended,” he concluded.
The comments that launched the controversy saw Robertson in rather graphic and blunt language describe the complementary anatomy of men and women leading to natural attraction.
When asked to name his definition of sinful behavior, Robertson replied: “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.”
“Don’t be deceived,” he added paraphrasing Scripture. “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.”
A&E’s judgement and statement on the matter was pointed. “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',” the network said. “His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.”
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Commenting at Newsbusters, an organization which exposes liberal media bias, Matthew Sheffield notes that Robertson’s elimination came “almost immediately” while discipline for liberals, even for the most grievous offenses comes slowly.
Sheffield recalls that it was 19 days before Martin Bashir “resigned” from MSNBC after he said on air that former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin should be force-fed feces and urine.
Palin herself took to Facebook on the matter posting a picture of her with the Robertsons and encouraging the faithful to take up the fight.
“Free speech is an endangered species,” she said. “Those ‘intolerants’ hatin’ and taking on the Duck Dynasty patriarch for voicing his personal opinion are taking on all of us.”
Leaders in the Southern Baptist Convention, America’s largest non-Catholic denomination with more than 15.8 million members in over 46,000 churches nationwide has weighed in.
“Suggesting that people who hold to what every branch of the Christian faith has held to for 2,000 years is somehow bigoted or hateful is not productive for speech,” said Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, on CNN.
Expanding his views on his blog Moore to the Point, he noted that while he thought Robertson’s “anatomical comparisons were ill-advised and crude,” the comments “that seem most offensive to people are his moral assessments of sex outside of conjugal marriage, which were more or less just a recitation of the Apostle Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 6.”
“As Christians, we believe that Jesus is lord over sexuality, and he says that sexuality is expressed rightly only in the marriage of a man and a woman. That’s not new,” said Moore.
Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Vice President of Legal Doug Napier warned that A&E’s move is “more evidence of the one-sided censorship of the cultural and political elites outraged by such a basic teaching.” Calling it a “meritless attack upon freedom,” Napier added that “A&E, as a media outlet, should understand better than most the free marketplace of ideas.”
To politely express concerns to A&E, contact:
CEO Abbe Raven: [email protected]