By Albert Lin
Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson is the latest public figure to find himself at the center of controversy after a host of anti-gay remarks attributed to him in a GQ magazine profile.
"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."
On what is sinful:
"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. 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."
"We never, ever judge someone on who's going to heaven, hell. That's the Almighty's job. We just love 'em, give 'em the good news about Jesus—whether they're homosexuals, drunks, terrorists. We let God sort 'em out later, you see what I'm saying?"
In a statement, GLAAD spokesperson Wilson Cruz condemned Robertson's comments: "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."
A&E, which airs Duck Dynasty, released the following statement from Robertson on Monday:
"I myself am a product of the '60s; I centered my life around sex, drugs and rock and roll until I hit rock bottom and accepted Jesus as my Savior. My mission today is to go forth and tell people about why I follow Christ and also what the bible teaches, and part of that teaching is that women and men are meant to be together. However, I would never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from me. We are all created by the Almighty, and like Him, I love all of humanity. We would all be better off if we loved God and loved each other."
On Tuesday, the network suspended Robertson indefinitely, saying in a statement:
"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.' His personal views in no way reflect those of A&E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the L.G.B.T. community."
What an indefinite suspension from a reality show means is unclear. As The New York Times pointed out, the show is not currently in production and much of next season's footage has already been shot, with a network spokesperson telling the Times that Robertson will appear in many of next season's episodes.
In outtakes from writer Drew Magary's reporting, Robertson also had this to say about Blacks he grew up around in Louisiana: "I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any Black person. Not once. 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. 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! … Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues."