What Did Phil Robertson Really Say

Phil Robertson Duck DynastyLeave it to Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty to spark the latest controversy. I’ve heard the thoughts on both sides of the debate. Some people want to destroy his life and annihilate his character. Other people are standing with him because he has a right to have his opinion.

But, what is getting me are the misinterpretations of what he said. Many people in this debate are relying on their sources to give them information rather than going to the source itself. It’s as if anyone with an opinion visited the site and saw three pages of an article, then decided to go find CliffsNotes.

I decided to go through the article and actually pull out all the quotes that have stirred this controversy. But if you would prefer, here is the actual article as it appears in GQ: What the Duck?

If you would rather just get the highlights, here are actual quotes of what Phil said:

  • It seems like, to me, a vagina—as a man—would be more desirable than a man’s anus. That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.
  • 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.
  • 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…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.
  • 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?
  • For the sake of the Gospel, it was worth it…All you have to do is look at any society where there is no Jesus. I’ll give you four: Nazis, no Jesus. Look at their record. Uh, Shintos? They started this thing in Pearl Harbor. Any Jesus among them? None. Communists? None. Islamists? Zero. That’s eighty years of ideologies that have popped up where no Jesus was allowed among those four groups. Just look at the records as far as murder goes among those four groups.

Agree with him, don’t agree with him! That’s not my issue. My issue with all the controversy is that there are people in this world who would vigilantly work toward silencing anyone who doesn’t think the way they do or say what they want them to say. The first thing they think is let’s get the man fired and then let’s see if he will cower in the corner and never come out again.

What does that solve? I know the outcome. The outcome makes people fear speaking their mind and saying what they want to say. First of all, if you look back through the words Phil actually said, there is not one thing said in hate. There isn’t anything hateful at all. In fact, I would like to highlight one important thing he said: “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…”

So, he doesn’t understand homosexuality. He quotes the Bible where it says homosexuality is a sin. Also, he never witnessed a black man being mistreated. That’s the gist of it. But if you rely on your sources rather than read the article for yourself, you will get spoon fed misinterpretations that portray him as a hateful person who compared homosexuals to terrorists and said that the slaves were happy people and those were happy times.

What is the objective of silencing the man? Is it so that his millions of fans aren’t influenced by his thoughts? Is it to change him, the man himself? Or, do you actually think this world will be a better place if anyone who opposes you is silenced so that you don’t have to hear it and you can move forward with your own compass?

Whatever happened to the notion of saying to someone, “Hey, that’s your opinion. I don’t agree with it.” Why is the solution these days to destroy a person’s life and annihilate their character so that no one else ever thinks of uttering those words again?

If you don’t say what we want you to say or think the way we want you to think, we will destroy you! Doesn’t sound American to me!

A hateful statement is one that calls for the destruction of a people, or that tries to impose ill-feelings toward a people for who they are. Hateful and divisive statements are ones that attempt to turn people against each other.

Hateful statements are not being misinformed about history, having a different view of past experiences or quoting from an ancient manuscript that has been the authority of the church for ages.

If you don’t agree with someone, censor yourself. But, don’t try to shut down free discourse. It’s the First Amendment. It’s so important, we thought of it first.

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Michael Allen is the author of A River in the Ocean, the heartwarming story of a single father who is separated from his daughter when an awful accident nearly takes his life. He comes out of his coma with amnesia, but something keeps pulling him to find what's missing in his life. He didn't know he was looking and she didn't know she needed found. Available now at Amazon!

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