At least one Alabama lawmakers stands with Phil: Republican state Sen. Jerry Fielding tells CNN he plans to introduce a symbolic resolution in support of suspended “Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson.
Fielding joins many social conservatives who have backed the 68-year-old Louisiana duck hunter since he was suspended from his show for making anti-gay comments. More than 250,000 people have signed a petition, IStandWithPhil.com, calling on A&E to bring him back.
Fielding said that while he didn’t agree with Robertson’s statements on race or his comparison of homosexuality to bestiality, he believes Robertson’s anti-gay position is “supported by the biblical scriptures.”
“For too long, the silent majority has remained silent when we ought to be speaking up” for the Constitutional right to free speech, Fielding told Brianna Keilar on CNN’s “Newsroom.”
Alabama state Rep. Patricia Todd, the only openly gay lawmaker in the Alabama state legislature, told WRBC that she expects the measure to pass.
Todd, a Democrat, said she believed Robertson has a right to express himself — but doesn’t think the issue is worth state lawmakers’ attention.
She also said she wasn’t surprised by Robertson’s remarks.
“Yes, I’ve watched “Duck Dynasty.” I thought it was quite amusing. I liked it. I still will continue to watch it,” she said. “(For) most of us, it was like no big deal. Who cares? Yes, of course he thinks that.”
Besides comparing gay sex to bestiality, Robertson also grouped gays with “drunks” and “terrorists.” He also said the African-Americans he knew growing up in rural Louisiana were perfectly happy before Civil Rights. Robertson made the comments in an interview with GQ.
His comments on race led the Rev. Jesse Jackson to say his remarks were more offensive than those of the Alabama bus driver who ordered Rosa Parks to give up her seat to a white passenger. Jackson also demanded a meeting between his Rainbow PUSH Coalition, GLAAD, A&E, and Cracker Barrel, which initially stopped selling “Duck Dynasty” merchandise but began selling it again when customers complained.
A&E has not responded to Jackson’s request or responded to TheWrap’s requests for comment.