First a disclaimer: I’ve never watched Duck Dynasty, and, much like with Harry Potter until two years ago, all I know about it I know through ‘cultural osmosis’. That said, Phil’s recent firing from his own show, which is the most popular TV show in the history of the Human race, strikes me as incredibly fascinating.
Phil Robertson and the Duck Dynasty family were already filthy rich before the show. A&E has way more to lose than the Robertsons.
What baffles me is A&E saying that the words of the star of a reality show about said star does not reflect the attitudes and beliefs of the show about the star who said those words.
Without getting into my own gender identity (people have assumed, based on my writing here, that I’m a woman or gender-queer), I have no problems with what Phil said or how he said it.
“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?”
Here, the beard is simply expressing his own preference and his bafflement that others would prefer otherwise. I’ve heard homosexuals express their bafflement at heterosexuals, too. While not every heterosexual male might put it in exactly those words, that more or less sums up the paradigm of heterosexuality which, whether you believe sexuality is binary or not, is the predominant orientation and opinion.
“But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”
One could attack this rhetorically, exploring ideal of hedonism, eudaimonia and such, but let’s just say that this is an expression that he is admitting that he doesn’t get the appeal because it doesn’t make sense to him.
“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.”
Here he goes a bit more ideological, because he believes that sexual amorality tends to spiral out of control. And whether or not you believe that homosexuality is sexually amoral, there is lots of evidence sexual experimentation, promiscuity, pornography and such do have the tendency to spiral out of control. Robertson simply believes that rather than run the risk of ruining ones life it is better to adhere to a sexually moral code of behavior which, in this case, excludes homosexuality.
“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.”
This is a pretty basic and pretty common belief in Christianity. He’s not singling anybody out, he’s not slandering anyone, he’s just saying what his faith believes. If there’s no God, then there’s no problem. If your God does not have a problem with what you’re doing, there’s no problem either. Gods don’t tend to agree; that’s why there are so many religions.
Glaad is out cheering that discrimination will not be tolerated. Yay for A&E and all that. Phil Robertson was fired for expressing his sexual preference and religious beliefs. If anyone was discriminated against for his sexuality or beliefs, it was Phil Robertson.
As for Phil, no matter how this turns out, he’s still gonna be filthy rich, he’s still gonna have a ridiculous beard and he’s still gonna shoot ducks in the swamp, and the people who get super bent out of shape about what this guy says need to take a long hard look in the mirror and ask themselves “Who is REALLY the one acting like a cartoon character here?”