“Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson was reportedly suspended, indefinitely, by the A&E Network for his anti-gay remarks in a GQ Magazine interview.
Robertson’s comments sparked criticism from gay advocacy groups GLAAD and the Human Rights Campaign. However, conservatives including Fox News Host Megyn Kelly and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin think the decision to suspend the reality show star was a bit too extreme.
Paraphrasing Corinthians, Phil Robertson stated to GQ that sinners including homosexual offenders will not “inherit the kingdom of God” because sleeping around with members of your own sex is foul and inhuman.
“Phil's decision to push vile and extreme stereotypes is a stain on A&E and his sponsors who now need to re-examine their ties to someone with such public disdain for LGBT people and families,” GLAAD spokesperson Wilson Cruz said in a statement published on the organization’s official website.
Disappointed to have read the comments in GQ, A&E announced on Wednesday that the network was putting Robertson under an indefinite hiatus.
“We are extremely 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 LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely."
Following his suspension, media conservatives came to the defense of the Duck Dynasty family patriarch.
Megyn Kelly said on The Kelly File that Robertson's immediate suspension was a violation of free speech.
"He is a Christian man – I grant you he did not say in this kindest way – but why can't there be a debate about it? Why can't there be a discussion…instead of 'you are fired.' "
Sarah Palin slammed A&E’s decision on her Facebook page saying it was wrong to hate on a man for expressing his sexual preference.
“Free speech is an endangered species. Those “intolerants” hatin’ and taking on the Duck Dynasty patriarch for voicing his personal opinion are taking on all of us.”
Right-wing radio host Mark Levin remarked how the network’s decision to remove Robertson didn’t comply with the First Amendment.
“I really don’t know why he was fired or suspended, but the latest report was fired other than an organized backlash and I’m sick of these organized backlashes. I’m tired of them.”
CNN host Don Lemon said that the star’s firing was a hasty decision and A&E could’ve handled the matter through dialogue.
“It’s offensive to me but the marketplace should decide.”
What do you think? Share your opinion in the comments section below.