Phil Robertson: Why Louisiana governor rides to Duck Dynasty defense

Phil Robertson was 'indefinitely' suspended from 'Duck Dynasty.' Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal weighs in on this "messed up situation." Could this be the opening the Phil Robertson to make a career change?

In Louisiana, apparently there's no political capital lost in defending Phil Robertson, patriarch of 'Duck Dynasty.'

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal issued a statement today after Phil Robertson was suspended by A&E from the show 'Duck Dynasty.' The suspension was prompted by Robertson's comments in a GQ magazine interview where he compared homosexuality to bestiality. At one point, Robertson paraphrased a passage 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."

Then, A&E issued a statement announcing Robertson's haitus:

"We are extremely disappointed to have read Phil Robertson's comments in GQ, which are based on his own personal beliefs and are not reflected in the series Duck Dynasty," A&E said in a statement. "His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely."

Duck Dynasty is filmed in Louisiana and one of the most popular shows on cable TV.

Governor Jindal decided someone in Louisiana should be sticking up for Robertson's free speech rights.

“Phil Robertson and his family are great citizens of the State of Louisiana. The politically correct crowd is tolerant of all viewpoints, except those they disagree with. I don’t agree with quite a bit of stuff I read in magazine interviews or see on TV.  In fact, come to think of it, I find a good bit of it offensive. But I also acknowledge that this is a free country and everyone is entitled to express their views.  In fact, I remember when TV networks believed in the First Amendment. It is a messed up situation when Miley Cyrus gets a laugh, and Phil Robertson gets suspended."

As reported earlier, the Robertsons have made no secret of their Christian faith on their hugely popular series, typically ending episodes by sitting around the dinner table saying grace.

Phil Robertson has said that A&E hit downplays his family's religious faith – but the intensity of his beliefs comes through in a recently released videotaped speech in Pennsylvania condemning abortion.

In the speech, he talks about presidents he says relied on the Bible, then turns to abortion. "Listen, from the time you started inside your mother's womb, Thomas Jefferson had it right, you have the God-given right to live, for crying out loud. You're this long!" he said, holding out his finger. "You're a week old inside your mother. They suck you out of there when you're about like that."

At one point last summer, rumors circulated that Louisiana Republicans might recruit Robertson to run for Congress.

"Yeah, I mean, I'd consider everything," Robertson told US Weekly. "But you know, at this point in my life, I'm really busy. Maybe we can help the country in some way, get these guys to be more efficient and all that. I don't know. I don't think now is the right time but who knows about one day?"

Maybe A&E has now given Robertson more time to consider a political career.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.