The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

World, nation, state

December 19, 2013

Patriarch off ‘Duck Dynasty’ after gay comments

LOS ANGELES — “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.

1
Text Only
World, nation, state
  • Cleveland gets GOP convention

    Cleveland won the unanimous backing of a Republican National Committee panel on Tuesday, all but guaranteeing the GOP’s 2016 presidential pick will accept the party’s nomination in perennially hard-fought Ohio.

    July 9, 2014

  • Obama wants billions to stop minors at border

    Tackling what he has called a humanitarian crisis, President Barack Obama on Tuesday asked Congress for $3.7 billion to cope with a tide of minors from Central America who are illegally crossing the U.S. border, straining immigration resources and causing a political firestorm in Washington.

    July 9, 2014

  • Israel strikes back

    The Israeli military launched a major offensive in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Tuesday, striking more than 100 sites and mobilizing troops for a possible ground invasion in what Israel says is an operation aimed at stopping a heavy barrage of rocket attacks from the Palestinian territory.

    July 9, 2014

  • Ukraine says rebels must lay down arms

    The Ukrainian government will restart cease-fire negotiations with pro-Russian insurgents in the country’s east only once the rebels lay down their weapons, the defense minister said Tuesday.

    July 9, 2014

  • Most children at border to be sent home

    The White House said Monday that most unaccompanied children arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border are unlikely to qualify for humanitarian relief that would prevent them from being sent back from their home countries.

    July 8, 2014

  • Family of teen slain in ’68 appeals for info

    Forty-six years after a Philadelphia teen’s disappearance and slaying, the girl’s family accepted her cremated remains Monday and asked for the public’s help in finding her killer.

    July 8, 2014

  • Israelis confess to killing Palestinian teen

    Three Israeli suspects in the killing of a Palestinian teenager who was abducted and burned to death last week confessed to the crime on Monday and were re-enacting the incident for authorities, an official said, as the country’s leaders raced to contain a public uproar over the slaying.

    July 8, 2014

  • HealthCare.gov site stumped ‘highly educated’ millennials, study shows

    Millennials who struggled to sign up for health insurance on HealthCare.gov have some simple advice for the Obama administration: Make the website more like Yelp or TurboTax.

    July 8, 2014

  • Washington state issues first licenses for pot stores

    The emails landed just after 1 a.m. Monday, bearing good news for Washington state’s first round of legal recreational pot proprietors: Your license has been approved.

    July 8, 2014

  • U.S. survivors of WWII battle recall Saipan attack

    Even after seven decades, Wilfred “Spike” Mailloux won’t talk about surviving a bloody World War II battle unless longtime friend John Sidur is by his side.

    July 7, 2014

House Ads
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
AP Video