The show's August premiere brought in 11.8 million viewers. (Source: A&E/MGN Online)
BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal issued a statement Thursday morning in support of Phil Robertson, following his suspension from the A&E show Duck Dynasty due to comments the star made in an interview.
"Phil Robertson and his family are great citizens of the State of Louisiana," Jindal said in a written release. "The politically correct crowd is tolerant of all viewpoints, except those they disagree with. I don't agree with quite a bit of stuff I read in magazine interviews or see on TV. In fact, come to think of it, I find a good bit of it offensive. But I also acknowledge that this is a free country and everyone is entitled to express their views. In fact, I remember when TV networks believed in the First Amendment. It is a messed up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh, and Phil Robertson gets suspended."
According to a report by RNN, Robertson was suspended after a profile piece appeared in GQ in which Robertson told the magazine that he does not support homosexuality, calling it illogical and a sin.
"[A woman has] more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I'm saying? But hey, sin: It's not logical, my man. It's just not logical."
Robertson went on to say "Everything is blurred on what's right and what's wrong. Sin becomes fine."
"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," he told the magazine before paraphrasing a portion of 1 Corinthians 6 from the Bible.
"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."
A&E said Robertson is "under hiatus from filming indefinitely."
"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 statement from the network read.
The Louisiana Democratic Party released the following response from Chair Karen Carter Peterson to Gov. Bobby Jindal's statement in support of Phil Robertson:
"If we support an entertainer's right to freedom of speech -- and we do -- then we must also support a corporation's right to terminate the entertainer's contract and distance itself from his blatantly offensive comments.
"That said, I am amused to hear that our governor is now urging tolerance of viewpoints that are unpopular. Former Secretary of Health and Hospitals Fred Cerise, former CEO of the Office of Group Benefits Tommy Teague and former chief of the Governor's Office of Elderly Affairs Martha Manuel all expressed opinions that differed from the governor -- and they were all summarily dismissed for expressing those views. Excuse me governor, but your hypocrisy is showing."
The Robertson family issued an official statement on their
website which reads:
We want to thank all of you for your prayers and support. The family
has spent much time in prayer since learning of A&E's decision. We
want you to know that first and foremost we are a family rooted in our
faith in God and our belief that the Bible is His word. While some of
Phil's unfiltered comments to the reporter were coarse, his beliefs are
grounded in the teachings of the Bible. Phil is a Godly man who follows
what the Bible says are the greatest commandments: "Love the Lord your
God with all your heart" and "Love your neighbor as yourself." Phil
would never incite or encourage hate.We are disappointed that Phil has
been placed on hiatus for expressing his faith, which is his
constitutionally protected right.We have had a successful working
relationship with A&E but, as a family, we cannot imagine the show
going forward without our patriarch at the helm. We are in discussions
with A&E to see what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty.
Again, thank you for your continued support of our family.