- (Screengrab of Saddleback Church video)
Phil Robertson, one of the stars of the hit A&E show "Duck Dynasty," is making waves after an interview with GQ Magazine in which he called on America to repent for its sins, and also discussed his Christian view regarding homosexuality. Since the interview was published online, the gay activist group GLAAD has called on A&E to end its relationship with "Duck Dynasty" due to Phil's "vile, extreme" remarks.
While speaking with GQ reporter Drew Magary on the extensive Robertson property in West Monroe, La., the patriarch of the Robertson clan provided a very candid and descript account of what he and the Robertson family, as evangelical Christians, are all about.
"We're Bible-thumpers who just happened to end up on television," Robertson says in the interview. "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."
Robertson went on to say that in the current state of America, "Everything is blurred on what's right and what's wrong. Sin becomes fine."
"Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men." Robertson then went on to paraphrase a verse from Corinthians: "Don't be deceived. Neither the adulterers, the idolaters, the male prostitutes, the homosexual offenders, the greedy, the drunkards, the slanderers, the swindlers – they won't inherit the kingdom of God. Don't deceive yourself. It's not right."
Robertson went on to clarify that as a Christian he doesn't judge anyone on whether they'll end up in heaven or hell. He recounted dark days of his own in the 1970s when he drank excessively and at one point had to flee the state of Arkansas after he beat up a bar owner and his wife. "We never, ever judge someone on who's going to heaven, hell. That's the Almighty's job. We just love 'em, give 'em the good news about Jesus – whether they're homosexuals, drunks, terrorists. We let God sort 'em out later, you see what I'm saying?"
Although Robertson's comments are in line with what many evangelicals consider biblical teaching regarding homosexuality, some members of the pro-gay community have chastised the reality television show star and duck call maker for his recent interview.
GLAAD representative Wilson Cruz said in a statement that Phil's comments should cause the A&E network to reexamine its ties to the "Duck Dynasty" show, which has been a huge ratings powerhouse for the network in 2013. The wholesome reality show follows the Robertson family's Duck Commander duck call business in Louisiana, and each episode is sprinkled with comedic hijinks and the family's evangelical values.
"Phil and his family claim to be Christian, but Phil's lies about an entire community fly in the face of what true Christians believe. He clearly knows nothing about gay people or the majority of Louisianans – and Americans – who support legal recognition for loving and committed gay and lesbian couples. Phil's decision to push vile and extreme stereotypes is a stain on A&E and his sponsors who now need to reexamine their ties to someone with such public disdain for LGBT people and families."
The network sent a statement to FOX411 on behalf of Robertson clarifying his comments. "I myself am a product of the 60s; I centered my life around sex, drugs and rock and roll until I hit rock bottom and accepted Jesus as my Savior. My mission today is to go forth and tell people about why I follow Christ and also what the bible teaches, and part of that teaching is that women and men are meant to be together. However, I would never treat anyone with disrespect just because they are different from me. We are all created by the Almighty and like Him, I love all of humanity. We would all be better off if we loved God and loved each other."
A&E's "Duck Dynasty" has broken multiple records since it began its first season in March 2012. The show became the most watched nonfiction cable telecast in history when its fourth season premiere raked in 11.8 million viewers, and it recently garnered a whopping 9 million viewers for its Christmas special.
The January issue of GQ Magazine featuring Phil Robertson's interview will hit newsstands on Dec. 24.