The members of the Robertson family of Duck Dynasty fame are speculating whether or not the hit reality cable show can continue. The family patriarch, Phil Robertson, has been suspended from the show indefinitely for making what some have called offensive comments about the homosexual community.
On Thursday night, the family issued a public statement thanking the public for their support and prayers.
The statement began by first confirming that the family had what they called a deep faith in God and a strong belief that the Bible is the Word of God. They did however, acknowledge that Phil’s comments to a reporter working for GQ magazine may have been rough. At the same time though, they made it clear that they still had faith in the man who started the Duck Commander empire. They referred to Phil Robertson as a godly man who loves others.
The statement went on to say that the family was speculating on the future of the show that is currently a hit on the A&E (Arts and Entertainment) network. While the family says that they have had a great relationship with the network, they also do not feel that it can continue unless Phil Robertson is still a part of what they do.
The A&E network announced earlier this week that Robertson was being put on an indefinite hiatus after referring to homosexual behavior as “sinful” in an upcoming issue of GQ magazine.
In the interview, Robertson had said that much behavior that was called sinful was now being condoned. The reporter then asked him what he meant by “sinful” behavior. In his answer, Robertson said that it started with homosexual behavior and got worse from there. He then quoted a scripture referring to many behaviors, including homosexuality, drunkenness, greed, and idolatry, that could not exist in what the Bible refers to as God’s kingdom.
The decision on the part of the A&E network to suspend Phil Robertson for these comments to GQ brought outrage from a variety of people including Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin.
In the same interview, Robertson also said that he never saw mistreatment of blacks when he was growing up in Louisiana before the Civil rights movement took place. He said that he worked side by side with many African- Americans and never heard one angry statement made about their treatment by white people.
Phil Robertson built the Duck Commander enterprise from the ground up and first began by going out on the road trying to sell his duck calls to individual businesses. With the help of his immediate and extended family, the company soon became a wealthy empire. From there, they would enter the world of pop culture and television. The show Duck Dynasty broke records in cable television for a nonfiction series. In the recent Macy’s Thanksgiving parade, several family members appeared on one of the floats.
Since the A&E network announced their decision to suspend Phil Robertson indefinitely, the social internet exploded with comments both for and against the company’s move. Several groups were started on Facebook urging people to boycott the Duck Dynasty series until Phil Robertson was taken off suspension. With the statement from the family, and speculation from the family, it is clear the future of the series is uncertain.
By Rick Hope