The patriarch of A&E’s Duck Dynasty is continuing to preach homophobia.
In an Easter sermon, Phil Robertson stood by the antigay remarks he had made during a controversial December interview with GQ magazine, in which he compared homosexuality to bestiality, prostitution, adultery, alcoholism, and terrorism, and claimed LGBT people were illogical “sinners.”
"They were mad at me … because instead of acknowledging their sin, like you had better do, they rail against me for giving 'em the truth about their sin,” Robertson told the congregation, in remarks that were recorded in a video posted to TMZ. “Don't deceive yourselves. You want the verse? The news media didn't even know it was a verse. They thought I was just mouthing off."
"'Is homosexual behavior a sin?’ the guy asked me,” Robertson continued, before reiterating his response at the time, which was a paraphrased passage from the Biblical book of Corinthians. “I said, ‘Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Don't be deceived. Neither the sexually immoral, neither the idolaters, nor adulterers, nor male prostitutes, nor homosexual offenders, nor thieves, nor greedy, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.’"
His remarks were received with applause from the audience.
In the referenced interview, Robertson had also stated: “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? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”
As a result of these antigay remarks last December, A&E had initially suspended Robertson from Duck Dynasty, only to lift the suspension several days later due to backlash from fans. At the time, the network released a statement saying that it would work with the Robertson family to promote tolerance, including a planned public service campaign that would support “our values as a company and the values found in Duck Dynasty.”
A&E, which in addition to the ratings blockbuster Duck Dynasty also boasts critically acclaimed shows like Bates Motel, is currently undergoing a rebranding, with the tagline of “Be Original” at the core of its new brand identity.