On Wednesday, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin blasted “intolerants” for “hatin'” on Duck Dynasty patriarch and Duck Commander Phil Robertson for expressing his (straight) sexual preference in a magazine interview.
Palin said Robertson’s indefinite suspension from the hit show was an attack on Americans and their increasingly endangered free speech.
In an interview with GQ, Robertson said that “a vagina–as a man–would be more desirable than a man’s anus.” Those remarks caused a firestorm, with organizations like GLAAD slamming Robertson even though the group gave liberal actor Alec Baldwin a pass for the homophobic and anti-gay slurs that led to his firing from MSNBC.
“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 on Wednesday. “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.”
Breitbart News Editor-at-Large John Nolte wrote Robertson was explicitly “talking about homosexual sexual behavior, not homosexuals as human beings. That is all the difference in the world.”
“It is quite obvious that Robertson is only guilty of being anti-sin, not anti-gay,” Nolte wrote on Breitbart.com. “You might disagree with Robertson, and you might not like what he or the Christian Bible have to say, but Robertson was as anti-gay as he was anti-heterosexual, and that is the very opposite of bigotry.” Robertson’s full remarks as recorded by GQ were:
Earlier on Wednesday, Robertson responded to the firestorm:
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.
The Duck Dynasty family, including patriarch Phil Robertson, hosted Palin in Louisiana nearly two weeks ago for Palin’s book tour. Members of the Robertson family took photos holding copies of Palin’s best-selling blockbuster book, Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas, which highlights American exceptionalism and embraces the role of God and faith in society. Palin’s book points out that the “war on Christmas” is simply the tip of the spear in a greater battle against American exceptionalism. As Breitbart News has reported, those same themes that are under assault in the legacy media and Hollywood have helped make Duck Dynasty one of the most popular television shows in history.
“Happy, happy, happy!” Palin, who has often commented that her kids think the Duck Dynasty family is cooler than she is, wrote on her Facebook page during the visit. “Thanks to the Robertson family and the Duck Commander team for welcoming us to West Monroe, LA!”
Charles Hurt, an editor at the Drudge Report, wrote in his “Nuclear Option” column for Breitbart News that “Phil Robertson and his industrious — not to mention genuinely quick-witted and riotously funny — clan have been around a long time, kept in the obscure headwaters of television programming” because the establishment media cannot stand his family’s industriousness and the fact the Robertsons “have remained faithful to their roots, traditions, and, most importantly, their religion.”
Hurt emphasized that Robertson grew up “in the backwoods of Louisiana and figured out something missing from the marketplace. So he started hand-crafting cedar duck calls in a shed behind his house. Turned out he was right, and the business turned into a family empire. They have made millionaires out of themselves and hired people all over their small town.”
Duck Dynasty has generated record ratings, and Bernie Quigley, a columnist for The Hill, wrote that Palin is the politician who most resonates with the Duck Dynasty nation.