It didn’t take long for A&E to cry uncle, and reverse its suspension of ‘Duck Dynasty’ star Phil Robertson. And their announcement came on Friday night, the traditional time to lessen the public impact — and before New Year’s, perhaps slowest news cycle all year.
All the same, the reversal may mark a significant turning point in the culture wars, against radical activists who have been able to bully their way into our living rooms, workplaces and schools over the past 25 years.
A&E announced that Phil Robertson will return to the show in 2014. Their statement:
As a global media content company, A+E Networks’ core values are centered around creativity, inclusion and mutual respect. We believe it is a privilege for our brands to be invited into people’s home and we operate with a strong sense of integrity and deep commitment to these principals.
That is why we reacted so quickly and strongly to a recent interview with Phil Robertson. While Phil’s comments made in the interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs, and his own personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the “coarse language” he used and the mis-interpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article. He also made it clear he would “never incite or encourage hate.” We at A+E Networks expressed our disappointment with his statements in the article, and reiterate that they are not views we hold.
But Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man’s views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family… a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness. These are three values that we at A+E Networks also feel strongly about.
So after discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A&E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family.
We will also use this moment to launch a national public service campaign (PSA) promoting unity, tolerance and acceptance among all people, a message that supports our core values as a company, and the values found in Duck Dynasty. These PSAs will air across our entire portfolio.
GLAAD, the homosexual pressure group, suffered a rare, stinging defeat. Their brief statement showed their displeasure, but also exposes their weakness, as they put “African-Americans” first in a rather pathetic attempt to deny the isolation they have brought on themselves with their anti-Christian bullying. Read on…
Phil Robertson should look African American and gay people in the eyes and hear about the hurtful impact of praising Jim Crow laws and comparing gay people to terrorists. If dialogue with Phil is not part of next steps then A+E has chosen profits over African American and gay people – especially its employees and viewers.
This sure doesn’t sound like the same GLAAD that has swaggered its way through Hollywood halls for 2 decades, intimidating producers into caving on their every demand to increase homosexual characters and censor Christian content.
The Christian organizers of the petition, IStandWithPhil.com, praised his reinstatement, though questioned if their voices had been heard:
“Despite our celebration, we remain uncertain of A&E’s true intent. Today, in the network’s statement of their core values – centered on ‘creativity, inclusion, and mutual respect’ – Faith Driven Consumers are left wondering whether A&E considers us to be a part of America’s rich rainbow of diversity,” said a statement from Chris Stone, founder of Faith Driven Consumer. “Do they also now embrace the biblically based values and worldview held by the Robertson family and millions of Faith Driven Consumers?”
Exactly. Trust…but verify. A&E’s reversal is not enough. It was based solely on financial reasons, and as a response to a massive viewer revolt. But they never should have taken the side of anti-religious zealots in the first place.
Christian Americans must stand up and demand that GLAAD’s brand of bigotry be rejected by all networks, and have no place in our media, schools, businesses, or government.