Duck! or Does Phil Robertson actually speak for all Christians?

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                   Phil Robertson speaking at Saddleback Church courtesy of therightscoop.com

Once again there is a chorus of Christians purporting to speak for me. This time around it is about Phil Robertson and A&E. Phil is just saying what all “true Christians believe”, is what I am hearing EVERYWHERE. I bet you are too.  

Sigh.

Nope. Nope. Nope. Simply not true. 
And people wonder why John Shore and I think the NALT Christians Project is so important.

Here are my thoughts on the whole kerfuffle:

1. Phil is absolutely free to express his opinion in any way he sees fit.

2. A&E is absolutely free to suspend him for it. (Think about it, would any Christians be crying “First Amendment” if TBN  or KLTY suspended one of their on air personalities for giving an interview in which a person expressed an opinion they disagreed with? Probably not. They would more likely say, as they do about Hobby Lobby and contraception, that it is okay because it violates their corporate conscience.) 

3. People are free to watch, not watch or not care because that is the free market at work. 

4. Make no mistake, Phil’s rights as an American were not violated. Just because you are free to say something without government reprisal or imprisonment does not mean what you say is free of consequences.

5. I cannot speak about this interview and neglect speaking out against the complete ignorance of Mr. Robertson’s statements on race and civil rights. 

Phil On Growing Up in Pre-Civil-Rights-Era Louisiana
“I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

Read More http://www.gq.com/entertainment/television/201401/duck-dynasty-phil-robertson#ixzz2nvvrkfgD

Oh my. Seriously? There is so much wrong with this statement.

6a. All “true Christians” do not agree with Phil about homosexuality. Many, many do not and our numbers are growing. I have written and posted extensively on this subject. You can check some of that out here.

6b. Or you can watch my NALT Christians Project video here.

6c. Or you can check out all the videos here.

6d. Or you can see my interview with the Whiskey Preacher on my personal evolution to becoming an ally here.

7. Phil Robertson is, as we all are, on his own personal journey. I do not hate him. I also do not agree with him. It is my prayer that somewhere along his path his heart will be opened toward his LGBT brothers and sisters, but unless and until it is I am glad that A&E has decided that they will not be a party to telling LGBT persons that they are less than the rest of us. As more and more people stand up in this way, in support of the LGBT community, hopefully there will be fewer and fewer stories like this one by Julie Wood entitled, 

Shamed: How The UMC contributed to my son’s death

Read it and tell me you can remain unmoved.

 
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15 thoughts on “Duck! or Does Phil Robertson actually speak for all Christians?

  1. Rick says:

    How are you going to say his statements on the blacks that he worked with was wrong it’s what he saw. You have no right to tell him he was wrong about that.

      • It would be scientifically impossible for the sky to do that, and no drugs have that specific hallucination as a know side effect. You can’t claim that something that is impossible is true just because of your personal experience. Phil claims blacks were happier under Jim Crow laws. The facts are different. Even if he didn’t see it., that’s not where his comment ended. He went into historical fact and claimed historical fact is wrong.

      • Matt,

        It’s intellectually dishonest to say that he said blacks were happier under Jim Crow.

        Let’s go to his words: ““I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

        Read More http://www.gq.com/entertainment/television/201401/duck-dynasty-phil-robertson#ixzz2o3VuElRI

        I don’t see happier even mentioned.

        If you look at the context, it’s clear that he’s not saying things were good for blacks in those days. He’s saying they chose their attitude. They chose to be happy.

        He’s saying that today, things are far better, and yet some choose to be miserable, or to blame white folks, or “the man” or whomever.

        So folks want to critique the man who said the following: “You put in your article that the Robertson family really believes strongly that if the human race loved each other and they loved God, we would just be better off. We ought to just be repentant, turn to God, and let’s get on with it, and everything will turn around.”

        Now some may differ on the finer points of loving and God and loving one another. But you have to admit, if you start with Jesus as the example and morph out from there, it’s probably a far better site than all this bickering about who is saved and who is a bigot.

      • uniballer1965, you should be more careful when using words like “intellectually dishonest” and then launching into an “intellectually dishonest” statement of your own :) What you think is clear is really just your interpretation of what he said. I don’t read that into what he said. I see nothing about the attitudes of blacks. You do, and you are free to do so. But to claim that he was making a statement about attitude when he never uses the word… well, use your own logic on yourself :) When I read his words, they seem to imply that he thinks blacks were happier (“they were happy; no one was singing the blues” would imply that since they now sing the blues but didn’t then that they were happier). I didn’t say he “said”, I said he “claims” – part of a claim is the implications that people make. Please make sure to get your statements straight, and refrain from using snobbery terms like “intellectually dishonesty.”

      • uniballer1965 says:

        He explicitly mentioned attitude. Choosing to be happy is the attitude. Your statement is only true if you don’t count the actual words Phil used, “Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

        That speaks to their attitude. So to say you don’t see where Phil says anything about their attitude isn’t being honest. I’ve quoted it twice, if you still don’t see it, then I don’t think anyone can make it more clear.

  2. What I don’t get is this particular quote: “Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there…. Bestiality”. Er, no. Homosexuality has nothing to do with bestiality, and the suggestion is “vile”, as GLAAD said.

    And- he says he finds vaginas attractive. I dare to hope that most men find women attractive. To reduce us to that particular organ- What?

    And yet I see “Christian” blogs standing up for him. How do they not see this? How can we get through to them? Man persecuted for saying gay sex is sinful- oh, he’s on their side, so they will speak out for him. How can we ever move forward when that is the attitude?

    • Also sad how Rachel Held Evans was slammed for saying “vagina,” but good ole boy Phil seems to get a free pass on that one. Deck the halls with hypocrisy, fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la….

  3. as always, Michelle, fantastic post. a few thoughts of my own:
    “I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash…” but he doesn’t realize that he was still one step above “the blacks” because he’s white. and besides, IT WAS THE JIM-FREAKING-CROW ERA, where Black people were easily targeted for personal, economic, and property violence if they dared to speak out against any ill treatment received from whites. “we” don’t always “sing the blues” in front of “you,” Mr. Robertson…not if we don’t feel safe to do so.

  4. I’m trying to figure out how him saying he never saw mistreatement of blacks where he was working right along side with them was wrong? He shared what he observed.

    He shared his sexual preferences. He said he preferred women and didn’t understand how a man could prefer men. Again, stating his preferences and understanding.

    Finally, he quoted scripture regarding what is regarded as sin. Not just homosexuality, but a whole host of sins.

    Why is only one group outraged? Why not the Bill Clintons or Charlie Sheens of the world, let alone the women who sleep with them or the booze companies who keep them supplied?

    Finally, no mention of his words where Phil says, “You put in your article that the Robertson family really believes strongly that if the human race loved each other and they loved God, we would just be better off. We ought to just be repentant, turn to God, and let’s get on with it, and everything will turn around.”

    We may agree or disagree about what it means to repent and love God and love one another. But I think we can all agree that if we did live that way, the world would be a better place.

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