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Phil Robertson's views on homosexuality divides Americans

By Abdul Kuddus     Dec 19, 2013 in World
New York - Following Phil Robertson’s suspension from the hit A&E reality series, fans and critics of the hunting show Duck Dynasty are divided on the reality star’s views on homosexuality.
Robertson is one of the biggest stars on the highest-rated show Duck Dynasty which reportedly garnered a record 11.8 million viewers for its most recent season premiere.
The suspension of Robertson happened following his controversial interview in the January issue of GQ in which he compared homosexual relationships to bestiality. He even went to the extent of comparing gays with drunks, terrorists and prostitutes.
"It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man's anus, that's just me," Robertson told GQ.
Reportedly his views triggered instant criticism from Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the NAACP. The NAACP and human rights groups in a letter to A&E expressed outrage and deep concern on the recent racist, homophobic and ill-informed remarks made by Phil Robertson.
On Wednesday, A&E reacted swiftly by putting the 67-year-old patriarch of the Robertson clan on an indefinite hiatus from the show.
According to the Washington Times, the statement read:
“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 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.”
However, the reality star also found his share of supporters, especially conservatives and members from the GOP including Sarah Palin, radio pundit Sean Hannity and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal who described the action as a violation of freedom of speech.
Jindal referred to Robertson’s case as a “messed up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh, and Phil Robertson gets suspended."
According to the Washington Times, “Mr. Robertson’s supporters have already rallied in his defense and created a petition — which nearly 20,000 have already signed — demanding his reinstatement to the show.”
Robertson too released a statement after his views invited the criticism saying, that he would never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from him.
Phil Robertson’s comments on homosexuality, the outcry and his suspension from the reality show shows larger split in American life—a discernible divide between progressives and traditionalist values.
For instance, a conservative Pam Besteder wrote on Twitter : "Whenever culture disagrees with the Word of God — CULTURE is wrong — not God. God is ALWAYS RIGHT!"
On the other hand, Jake Smith, a volleyball champion from Lawton, Okla., tweeted in favour of the Duck Dynasty star saying "Phil Robertson is the man! Finally someone with a voice spoke some truth. If your persecuted, then you are blessed."
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