Can you believe the media sensation surrounding one redneck from Louisiana? (I am not talking about Drew Brees or the Bayou Mauler!)
Of course, I am talking about Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame.. Phil, much like Paula Deen before him, is being castigated in the media because of his interview with GQ magazine. The interviewer asked very pointed questions of Phil. These questions centered on his Christian faith and his family values. In the event that you have been living under a rock these last few days, I will tell you that Phil said that homosexuals, as well as those engaging in other behaviors frowned upon in the Bible, are not going to inherit the Kingdom of God. Phil was trying to be nice in saying that people practicing these behaviors were ‘going to hell.’
Can you believe it? People practicing these behaviors took exception to his comments!
Because GQ is also media, the magazine just could not resist creating interest in their upcoming January issue, all in the hope of selling more magazines. They did this by releasing the contents of the interview with Phil. Thus the media storm.
I have never watched a Paula Deen program. I have watched most of the Duck Dynasty programs. Why? Both Grandma P and I like to be entertained without the excessive use of foul language, blatant sex, violence or gore. Such offensive programs were not prevalent in our formative years, but they monopolize the programming today. Along came Duck Dynasty. A program not afraid to illustrate people who openly and proudly practice their Christian faith. A family that is not ashamed of demonstrating their family values. A zany cast of characters, some with beards and camouflage clothing, that appears to be having a really good time. It provides good entertainment. The family dynamics are amusing.
Phil Robertson is the patriarch of the family. He is devoutly Christian. He is honest. He is rich. He is a target. He is a target because he speaks what is on his mind and when he does, he can get himself into trouble. The ‘politically correct’ disagree with his life philosophies. More on that later.
Because of their reality show on A & E, we know quite a bit about Phil and the entire Robertson family. He frankly admits that he was both an alcoholic and a womanizer until he found faith. Not too many people would fess up to that, but Phil does. As a child of the 60s, he has stated that early life was ‘sex, drugs and rock-and-roll.’ That is totally understandable to me as I am a child of the 60s. The temptations were there. Life choices are a bit blurry when you are subjected to so many temptations as a teenager.
But enough about Phil. After all, he is what he is. He is the patriarch of a family that has the most popular show on cable television.
What I find most interesting, is A & E’s initial response to Phil’s interview:
‘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. His personal view in no way reflects 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.’
Champions of the LGBT community? That indicates to me that A & E are supporters of that lifestyle, and embrace it as being more important than any other lifestyle. When you champion a cause, is that not what is meant? I could be in trouble! On all these forms that I have filled out over the years asking sexual preference, I have always answered ‘flaming heterosexual.’ Admittedly, the writer of the A & E response is gay.
A & E, do you really believe his personal beliefs are not reflected in the Duck Dynasty program? Do you ever watch what you televise? His beliefs are everywhere in that program! Look at his sons. Are they not a reflection of his beliefs? Alan is a minister. Look at Phil’s daughters- in-laws and grandkids. Phil’s imprint is everywhere! Have you not seen them closing each show with a prayer at a family dinner? It is usually at Phil’s house.
I am not an advocate of gun control, but maybe we need to revisit that issue when it comes to stupidity. A & E has the most popular cable television program ever, and then someone decides to shoot themselves and the network in the foot with that stupid response. Thus the gun control for stupidity. I am sure Phil would lend a shotgun to the A & E writer of the response. He would likely throw in the ammo. What makes this all the more amazing is that A & E receives royalties for all things Duck Dynasty! Bring extra ammo, Phil! (Duck Commander and Buck Commander are strictly the Robertson family.)
What are some smart responses?
Under Armour, the maker of all that fine Duck Dynasty camouflage clothing and hunting gear responded: “We are obviously aware of the situation, and his comments are not indicative of Under Armour’s views. We have no plans to change our current relationship.” Short and sweet.
The Walmart comment was that it would have ‘no comment.’ I find that interesting as they were one of the first companies to dump Paula Deen during her media crisis. All in the name of political correctness. (It is also interesting to know that you can still buy Paula Deen items on the Walmart website.) Maybe capitalism is winning over ‘political correctness.’
Duck Dynasty is another animal. (Pardon the pun.) The latest Wall Street estimates are that Duck Dynasty has created over $400 million in merchandise and clothing sales. Walmart is estimated to be responsible for half of that total. By far, the most popular line of clothing sold in Walmart is anything that has to do with our favorite bearded, camouflaged family. That is for both men’s and women’s clothing! That’s not chicken feed!
Bobby Jindal, governor of Louisiana, said it best, “The politically correct crowd is tolerant of all viewpoints, except those they disagree with.”
I could not agree more. As I have mentioned in numerous posts, I am tolerant until someone engraves their cause on a Louisville Slugger, and hits me between the eyes. I had to look up what LGBT meant. I am more than tired of the media attention given to states that are allowing same-sex marriages. In Minneapolis, the mayor married 50 same-sex couples in city hall the day the law went into effect. Am I becoming homophobic, or are these people attempting to impose their lifestyle on our society? In referring to the A & E response about being ‘champions of the LGBT community,’ I think the Louisville Slugger has been swung. And we now know in which direction they swing.
Why is Phil the target of so much venom by the ‘politically correct?’ Short answer: He is a Christian and he believes in the Bible. In essence, he swung his bat, and the ‘politically correct’ don’t like it.
I don’t necessarily agree with all of Phil Robertson’s beliefs, but I do support his right to state his beliefs. After all, we are subjected every week to brainless comments made by athletes, entertainers, and politicians. If they can get the podium, Phil should get it, too. (Charlie Sheen, the epitome of virtuous lifestyle, has jumped on the Phil bashing bandwagon. Need I say more?)
Here are the repercussions of Phil’s interview. Firstly, prominent people have risen to his defense. Too many to mention. Secondly, the Duck Dynasty merchandise is flying off the shelves in support of Phil. Many of the Walmart stores have run out of the DD merchandise. Thirdly, the silent majority has become very verbal in their defense of Phil.
Sorry, A & E, I do not see Duck Dynasty continuing without Phil. They have enough money. You need them more than they need you. Good luck in negotiating further contracts with the Robertson family. How many major networks do you think have contacted the Robertsons?
Aha! I finished this article, and while the Bayou Mauler was editing it, lo and behold, the A & E network released a statement:
“After discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A & E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family”
Well isn’t that just ducky?
The network has put aside their moral dilemma to keep their ducks afloat. They’ve been offended, but not so offended they would completely abandon the Number 1 series on cable TV. To completely ruin their alliance with the merchandising phenomenon would be a bad call – a bad duck call, that is.
December 28 is the one year anniversary of Common Sense by Grandpa T. We have received over 43,000 hits on the blog site, about 40,000 more than I thought we would get. I have enjoyed writing it and hope you have enjoyed reading it. My thanks to Grandma P, Houston Nefoo, and my hotshot proof reader, Bayou Mauler, a proud Christian and Louisiana gal.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!