Duck Dynasty Defending Christianity on Cable Network Television...
Phil Robertson, The Duck Dynasty Patriarch
The Robertson Way
Phil Robertson from A&E's hit television show DUCK DYNASTY is facing criticism over comments he made in an interview with GQ magazine for their January 2014 issue. The Robertson family is best known for the brand of duck calls, DUCK COMMANDER, and more recently they have grown to prominence through television with their show Duck Dynasty. You will be hard pressed to go into a Walmart nationwide and not see the influence on marketing that the Duck Dynasty show has created. Items included in their arsenal are duck calls, t-shirts, baby clothing, hats, underwear, Halloween costumes, and pretty much any other material possession a person could think of. With all of this taken into consideration, they have landed their family and their $400 million dollar "dynasty" into the prime of the public eye. The head of the family Phil Robertson is known to be a devout Christian and a man who follows the Bible down to every last Psalm but has this character trait of his damaged their empire and brand for good?
Christian Moral Dynasty
Hypocrisy and The American Media
We have seen a decade of progression with Human Rights in terms of mainstream acceptance of same sex marriages and relationships. Great strides of the past 10 years have been made in the fight for equal rights for the "LGBTQIA" community nationwide by seeing the advent of legalized same sex marriages in various states across the country. While we are watching this unfold we are also seeing a lot of backlash from the strong presence of the Christian population. The Bible states that men are meant to be with women and anything else is an abomination and that "They Shall Not inherit The Kingdom of God" ( 1 Corinthians 6:9-11 ). Overcoming this obstacle and being accepted into a faith will be the biggest battle for those who are in same sex relationships and wanting to be married under the eyes of God. So should we look down upon someone for their religious beliefs just because what they believe as a Christian goes against same sex relationships? I think not. Chastising a human being for their religious belief would be equal to chastising a human being for their uncontrollable feeling of love for another human being indiscriminate of sex, age, race, nationality, etc.
What is YOUR take?
Should "A&E" be held responsible for discrimination based on their reprimand of Phil Robertson?
The Personal Opinion Heard Around the Nation
When Phil Robertson opened up to GQ magazine in his interview and spoke on his personal feelings about same sex relationships, what damage was really done? We could all debate until we are blue in the face about what human, civil, and/or constitutional right was damaged the most and why but that would get us absolutely no where and quite quickly. This is not only a question of a person's right to be with who they love no matter the sex of both people. This is a question of why should a television network openly discriminate on a Christian man over his beliefs and a question of how far can we as a nation allow our constitutional rights to be taken from us.
The media coverage about this GQ article has sparked a lot of protest on all fronts by even choosing to engage with such a story. As human beings we are all fallible and open to much imperfection. Newsrooms are going crazy with this story and doing what they do best and blowing it out of proportion. Phil quoted the Bible to GQ and is now the most talked about Louisianian aside from his television or business persona when it is not Phil to blame because Mr. Robertson did not write The Bible and is not making misconceptions about what The Bible teaches people to believe. Most of the population that are for the rights of same sex couples and that are Christian are normally the people who are taking things out of context so why not criticize them for doing that? Because it is wrong and it is wrong to criticize a man for his beliefs and preference of partner. The nonexistence of "hate speech" or "hate rhetoric" in the interview is astounding and can only exist in the minds of those that view The Bible as "hateful propaganda". A person can not choose at the drop of a dime who they are scientifically physically attracted to but yet a person should not be forced into believing in a particular religion over another. This is where the double edged sword begins to slice both sides.
Looking at the facts of what was said and where it came from in a person's soul while taking them at face value is what we have to do in life so that we can promote the betterment of all of mankind in a positive direction through positive thinking. Everyday we take people at face value for their opinions on a variety of subjects as demanding as religion and sex in addition to trivial opinions on music and literature. Just because someone is a "star" of popular culture does not make their opinion of no more or less greater importance than that of "the homeless guy that rants curbside" or that of "the cashier who tells you their life story". When we begin to do this we then meet one of our many imperfections that surround our "fallible" condition as a human being and then we get a little "blurry" as individuals and ultimately as a nation because we get so caught up in "stardom" and gossip that we forget to simply ask ourselves, "Why?". Theorizing that for every 1 person who has an opinion on this statement that there are probably 5 more people who have no idea who Phil Robertson is or what he said exactly but all they hear is that "Phil Robertson hates same sex marriages" in their minds is what I think has to be taken into consideration among numerous things. Have you ever played "telephone" as a child and you would start off with what was actually said and then end up with a completely different story? If so, then we all know that this is what is bred into the mind's eye by media, the rumor mill, and any other person who partakes in any form of gossip or "story-weaving".
Equal Opportunity Employer
State your take on constitutional rights.
Do you feel like this is a violation to the constitutional right of Freedom of Speech and/or Freedom of Religion?
As a writer I will not fully express my personal thoughts on this subject. I am writing this unbiased in anyway regardless of having gay people in my family that I love unconditionally. This was written to just give you all a different way to view this situation. I am not sticking up for Phil Robertson nor am I sticking up for the gay community. I am sticking up for human/ civil rights, the constitution, and equal opportunity employment. I do however feel that if it is not addressed as discrimination, we are taking a huge hit to the workforce nationwide by allowing such a debacle regarding equal opportunity employment and employee rights to take such a huge blow in a VERY obvious manner, publicly displayed. Thank you for reading! Feel free to discuss this in the comments!
A & E "Suspended" Phil Robertson
The fact that A&E suspended Phil Robertson over this interview with GQ is fringing on the borders of workplace discrimination. If they were to fire someone for being gay, or muslim, or anything based on an employees personal life, that would be wrong under rule of laws set in place nationwide. So not only has the freedom of speech been torn apart and the freedom of religion thrown to the birds, now a law has been broken by OPENLY discriminating against Phil Robertson for religious belief. This did not happen "on the show" and was done during a personal interview with a company that is completely separate from the show.
If a corporation/business or any place of employment were to reprimand someone based on sex, age, race, religion, creed, color, etc then they would have a huge lawsuit on their hands. Let us pretend, if A&E were to "suspend" or reprimand someone based on an interview that they conducted outside of the confines of the A&E universe where they revealed that they were gay, then A&E would be blamed for discrimination. So, just because what Phil Robertson said offended some people about HIS PERSONAL RELIGIOUS BELIEFS, he should be suspended and reprimanded? This is a gigantic hypocrisy. Equal Opportunity Employer means they must give everyone the same chance to work as they would ANYONE else regardless of personal beliefs and/or sexual preference. This has become an attack on the freedom of speech and the freedom that one person has to choose what religion they want to believe in and how they want to believe in that religion. Phil did not say anything hateful or bash anyone in the interview. He has expressed zero intolerance towards the gay community. The situation at hand has become a witch hunt in my opinion. The gay community as a whole should really look at this situation and learn from it. If there are to ever exist equal rights for everyone based on sexual preference and freedom of religion, then the gay community must learn to accept that there WILL be people out there that do not support same sex marriage and the fact that they do not support them, does not make them a monster in any way shape or form. Not everyone in the country has to support gay rights, some people just choose to support gay rights because it is seemingly what is right to do in the respect to human rights in general. Does the gay community as a whole support freedom of religion no matter what that would mean in this world?? Does the gay community at large stand behind freedom of speech? Or have things been so clouded by the fight and struggle for equal gay rights that if someone who doesn't believe in same sex marriages MUST be persecuted and burnt at the stake? Phil is not hating anyone based on their sexual preference. Phil has not publicly filleted a persons reputation based on his beliefs and/or opinions. Many other celebrities have said far worse things that go against basic civil human rights and have barely gotten a mention. Just some food for thought here America. Find the answers within yourself. There is no such thing as right or wrong with this debate. There is only what is constitutionally protected and what is protected by the E.O.E. laws, rules, and regulations. Simple. This has been more of a travesty against our constitution and E.O.E. rights more so than just offending people by what THE BIBLE says and what ANY Christian believes, not just Phil Robertson. Come on, open your minds people, gay community AND anyone else. Look at this for what it TRULY is and not what the media WANTS it to become.
GQ MAGAZINE - JANUARY 2014 - Phil Robertson Interview
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