Saturday, December 21, 2013

If It Looks Like a Duck...

I really thought long and hard about how to approach this whole "Phil Robertson-Duck Dynasty" debacle. I hesitate to throw my hat in the ring on my own blog, but I figure "Why the fuck not?".

I have numerous thoughts on this, the least of which has to do with how ignorant I think his comments were. Do I agree with them? Nope. I think if guys wanna sword fight and women wanna scissor, it's their business. What consenting adults do relationship-wise is none of my concern. Now, mind you, I have NOTHING against gay relationships. Not a damn thing. I 100% support them, I stand up for them, I advocate for them, and yes I attend Pride parades. But how I feel about them has nothing to do with whether or not they should have the same rights as everyone else. I could think it was wrong as hell, revolting, etc and still not be able to say that legally they shouldn't be equal.

Anyway, I said that was the least of my thoughts on this whole craziness...and it is. I keep seeing Conservatives bleating about how Liberals are hypocrites because Obama let a "homo-killing Muslim" into the White House, but because Robertson is a Christian, Liberals are calling for his head. They even referred to Farrakhan as "Obama's buddy".

Okay. Let's talk about that, shall we? Louis Farrakhan disagrees with Obama on a lot of things. In fact, he's quoted as calling him an "assassin". Hardly something one would say when referring to a friend. So, I think it's safe to say that they aren't exactly BFFs. Just because he visited the White House, that doesn't mean he was there with Obama slapping him on the back, having a drink, and discussing the gays. Use your fucking brains. Remember: Not everyone who visits the White House is there to party with the Prez. Not everyone who walks through those doors shares the same opinions as Democrats or Liberals OR the President.

Now, if you had more of a thinking brain than a Neanderthal, you would see that most on the other side of this issue are not saying that Robertson cannot say what he was quoted as saying. They aren't saying his freedom of speech should be taken away. In fact, his freedom of speech hasn't been taken away. He hasn't been arrested or fined for what he said. No one is preparing a machete to hack off his head for voicing his opinion. He hasn't been censored. The article, with the comments, was printed. The backlash he is experiencing is from the court of public opinion. He said what he said. It was printed in a very public media format. And now people are discussing it. That's all it is. It's no different than Miley twerking at the VMAs. People are talking and not everyone agrees.

As for A & E suspending him? Yeah, you read that right. Suspending. He was not "fired". He was not "shit-canned". He was suspended indefinitely, which means that he's basically getting a spanking and will probably be back. I've seen several (hundred) people saying this isn't right, that A & E is censoring him, that they're punishing him for his religious views.

NO. Just...fucking NO! That's not what is happening here. Look beyond your goddamn persecution complex and look at the legalities of this situation. A man signs a contract with an employer. Within that contract, his employer stipulates that he cannot do anything that reflects badly on his employer. That includes sharing a discriminatory opinion publicly while you're "on the clock" or representing the company. The same man then proceeds to equate homosexuality with bestiality and terrorism...very publicly...while he's "on the clock".

Phil Robertson signed a contract with A & E. If A & E feels that his comments that were made while he was doing a PR interview as a representative of Duck Dynasty reflected badly on their company, they were within their rights to dole out a suitable "punishment". He very well could have said "Well, I go along with what the bible says about homosexuality. What the bible says is my personal view" and left it at that. I highly doubt that there would have been much of an uproar about that and I doubt he would have been suspended from the show for it. But no, he went further and threw in a nice slippery slope fallacy, claiming that homosexuality will morph out to bestiality and how it's a sin equal to terrorism. That kind of thing reflects badly on A & E, a very LGBT-friendly company.

Let's take it a step further. Let's say there are homosexuals on the crew of Duck Dynasty. Now these people know that Phil equates their sexuality with bestiality and terrorism. Do we really think this kind of thing won't create a hostile work environment where people aren't comfortable doing their jobs because of how they are viewed by one of the cast members? It's a potential lawsuit for discrimination waiting to happen.

I keep seeing these Facebook pages popping up: Phil4President, I Stand With Phil, etc. I'm sorry, but even if he was a nice person (Note: Saying "it's not for me to judge, but this is what the bible says happens to people who do this that and the other thing" does not make you not a bigot. It just gives you a shield to hide behind. Passing the buck to god.) his views on some issues would set this country back decades. The man thinks blacks were happier under Jim Crow laws for fuck's sake. Is that REALLY what we want for this country?

Bottom line: I support his right to voice his opinion. His opinion sucks giant moldy monkey balls, but I support his LEGAL right to say it. That doesn't mean he's immune from the court of public opinion and it doesn't mean that A & E has to accept that he grossly misrepresented their company in that interview. And, frankly, they don't have to take that shit.

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