Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Tolerance and Inclusion? Only for Some...

In the wake of the A&E Duck Dynasty "controversy", we now have the oh so tolerant "commentators" from MSNBC mocking former presidential candidate Mitt Romney's family photo.

Why did the photo attract the attention of the MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry? Why those oh so milky white Romneys have a black grandchild!

Romney's son Ben and his wife Andelynne adopted the child in September and of course, Romney was immediately slammed because he made the egregious mistake of incorrectly saying that Kieran was grandchild #22 instead of #23.

Yes, she's the one with the tampons for earrings...
Just listen to the juvenile snickering and downright nasty comments made by Harris-Perry, Pia Glenn, and Dean Obeidallah. These are the so-called liberals who "celebrate diversity and inclusion" only when it suits their agenda.

Here is the video of Harris-Perry and her panelists. Harris-Perry introduces the photo, her voice dripping with sarcasm which then turns to an outright despicable bashing of Romney and his family.

Isn't it interesting that these self-loathing liberals who preach tolerance and diversity become outright racists when someone "on the other side" has the audacity to adopt a child that is obviously not the same color? As if that should matter...

Here's are some of the oh so glib comments:

Melissa Harris-Perry: Everybody loves a baby picture. And this was one that really, a lot of people had emotions about this baby picture this year. This is the Romney family. And of course there on Governor Romney’s knee, is his adopted grandson who is an African-American, an adopted African-American, Kieran Romney. And he captions…

Pia Glenn: (singing) One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just isn't the same.

And they all break into laughter over that hilarious joke.

Then Harris-Perry goes on to say how she wants to make it her goal for Kieran Romney to marry rapper Kanye West's daughter North West saying:

Harris-Perry: "Can you imagine Mitt Romney and Kanye West as inlaws?"

Oh the hilarity!! Imagine the stodgy, stuffy conservative (psst religious) white guy having a rapper as an in-law??? There should be a sitcom!!

Dean Obeidallah:"I think this picture's great, it really sums up the diversity of the Republican party."

It's OK to make stupid racist comments as long as they're aimed at the white guy, right Dean?

Harris-Perry then closes out the yuckfest by teasing the next segment, the "annual lookback at 'Hey, was that racist?"

Ironically, the hypocrisy of that very question was lost on Melissa Harris-Perry.

And now of course they are all backing down and offering the obligatory mea culpas:

“Occasionally my jokes have been known to ‘cross the line’ and I can assure you that in the future some of my jokes will do that again,” “My joke on MHP was not intended in any way to mock the Romney family or the baby they adopted. Rather it was a joke about the lack of racial diversity that we see at the Republican National Convention. I apologize to the Romney family and especially the baby if any of them were offended by that joke.” - Dean Obeidallah

Really Dean? How did pointing out that the Romney's have a black grandchild represents the Republican National Convention not mock Romney's family or the baby?

Can't have one without the other genius.

And Pia Glenn got slammed on Twitter:

Melissa Harris-Perry needs to get over herself with the #MHPapology hashtag. That's just a bit too disingenuous.

Phil Robertson stated his beliefs in an interview with GQ's Drew Magary and typically the terminally outraged tried to tar and feather Robertson and were soundly defeated, but liberals had to lie and distort what Robertson said to try and fuel the "outrage".

The worst of it was when the increasingly irrelevant  "Reverend" Jesse Jackson Sr., who should be well aware of the Biblical scripture to which Robertson was quoting, jumped on the comments Robertson made about blacks in Louisiana when Robertson was growing up:

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. 

Robertson is saying what he saw, not anything racist or demeaning. He was talking about people, black and white doing what they had to do to get by and made the outrageous comment that they were happy. Again, lost in all of this was Robertson's reference to God, what he was saying is that people who have God in their lives do not need anything else to get by. Black or white. 

How in any way shape or form is that racist?

Well, "Reverend" Jackson found Robertson's remarks "be more offensive than Rosa Parks' bus driver":

“These statements uttered by Robertson are more offensive than the bus driver in Montgomery, Alabama, more than 59 years ago,”

“At least the bus driver, who ordered Rosa Parks to surrender her seat to a white person, was following state law. Robertson’s statements were uttered freely and openly without cover of the law, within a context of what he seemed to believe was ‘white privilege.’”


White privilege?

Did you read what Robertson said "Reverend" Jackson?

"I hoed cotton with them. I'm with the blacks because we're white trash"

Sounds to me that Robertson was sympathizing with black field workers there "Reverend", not bashing them. Is Jesse Jackson even aware that Phil Robertson also has an adopted black grandson?

The problem in this country with race relations is that you have people like Melissa Harris-Perry, Pia Glenn, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Oprah Winfrey and worse of all President Obama who have done nothing but worsen race relations by their words and actions. 

Martin Luther King  said it best in his I Have a Dream speech:

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream."

The content of the character of people like these who inject racism into everything and anything should be the question, not the color of their skin which they use to promote division.

Haven't we gotten past all this? As long as people like Melissa Harris-Perry and Jesse Jackson continue to race bait, the answer is sadly, no.

Friday, December 27, 2013

The Lingering Effects of War

A recent visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, to the controversial Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, Japan has reopened lingering wounds that have existed with China as well as Taiwan and South Korea relating to the shrine. Prime Minister Abe, is the first Japanese Prime Minister to visit the shrine since 2006 when last visited by then Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. Prime Minister Abe attended the shrine in a televised event and proclaimed the visit was not in an official capacity.

Shinzo Abe, centre, follows a Shinto priest as he visits the Yasukuni shrine for war dead.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (c) visits the controversial Yasukuni Shrine
China, Taiwan and South Korea view the shrine to be symbolic of Japan's aggressive militarism up to World War II. The controversy has been simmering for quite some time as there are two views of Imperial Japan and its actions in the region. The Chinese, Taiwanese and South Koreans claim to be victims of atrocities committed by Japanese soldiers in what is infamously known as the Rape of Nanking

Japan has taken a controversial stance regarding Nanking and other infamous events by either downplaying or not recognizing their existence in historical teachings, especially in schools.

On December 13, 1937, 50,000 Japanese troops descended on the then Chinese capital city of Nanking (Nanjing) and proceeded to systematically murder, torture, rape and burn 300,000 victims in what has been termed as The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II by author Iris Chang.

Iris Chang - The Rape of Nanking: The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II -- authors writers interviews from Dian Carna on Vimeo.

This event also spurned the advent of so-called Comfort Women, Chinese, Korean and other female civilians taken as sex slaves for Imperial Japanese Army soldiers.

Some in Japan consider the events to be exaggerated, notably, University of Tokyo Professor Nobukatsu Fujioka, who is quoted by BBC's Mariko Oi as saying that the events were staged by the Chinese government.

Mariko Oi
Oi wrote an interesting article about how history is taught in Japan for BBC News Tokyo. In the article, Ms. Oi quotes Professor Fujioka essentially denying the atrocities to civilians ever happened.

Tokyo University Professor Nobukatsu Fujioka
Professor Fujioka was quoted as denying the events in Nanking by Oi in the article:

"It was a battlefield so people were killed but there was no systematic massacre or rape," he says, when I meet him in Tokyo.

"The Chinese government hired actors and actresses, pretending to be the victims when they invited some Japanese journalists to write about them.

"All of the photographs that China uses as evidence of the massacre are fabricated because the same picture of decapitated heads, for example, has emerged as a photograph from the civil war between Kuomintang and Communist parties."

As Ms. Oi points out in her article, there is a tendency for the Japanese Ministry of Education to avoid or gloss over these and other events from in teaching Japanese history in Japanese schools.

Japanese Emperor Hirohito at the Yasukuni Shrine in 1935
What is the Yasukuni Shrine and why is it so controversial?

The Yasukuni was dedicated in 1869 by Japanese Emperor Meiji to honor the souls of those who fought and died for their country.

From the Yasukuni Shrine website:

Currently, more than 2,466,000 divinities are enshrined here at Yasukuni Shrine. These are souls of men who made ultimate sacrifice for their nation since 1853 during national crisis such as the Boshin War, the Seinan War, the Sino-Japanese and Russo-Japanese wars, World War I, the Manchurian Incident, the China Incident and the Greater East Asian War (World War II). These people, regardless of their rank or social standing, are considered to be completely equal and worshipped as venerable divinities of Yasukuni.

Japanese people believe that their respect to and awe of the deceased is best expressed by treating the dead in the same manner as they were alive. Hence, at Yasukuni Shrine, rituals to offer meals and to dedicate words of appreciation to the dead are repeated every day. And, twice every year-in the spring and autumn-major rituals are conducted, on which occasion offerings from His Majesty the Emperor are dedicated to them, and also attended by members of the imperial family.

Because there are soldiers who were involved in the Nanking incident honored at the shrine, it is considered offensive  to Chinese, Taiwanese and South Koreans who remember the events of December through February 1937 as a dark piece of history for Imperial Japan.

Prime Minister Abe's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine would be akin to Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel visiting a shrine dedicated to past German war heroes which includes Nazis

Of course, such a shrine does not exist in Germany.

Speaking of Germany conversely, kids are educated about The Holocaust and World War II. The article points out that in Germany, the subject of the Holocaust is approached head on:

For Germans, the Holocaust is not an event that happened in a faraway place in some distant past, but is part and parcel of their recent history. The memory of the Nazi dictatorship -- of which the Holocaust is an integral part -- and its traumatic legacies have been shaping German policies since the end of World War II. The rebuilding of political institutions in western Germany and postwar political education were largely determined by a serious effort to try to understand the horrors of the Nazi dictatorship and by searching for safeguards in order to prevent history from repeating itself. Consequently, teaching about Nazi dictatorship and the Holocaust at schools is not limited to a niche in the history syllabus like the "French and the Indian Wars." Instead, it is discussed again and again in different ways, in a number of subjects, and at different points in time.

The treatment of the Nazi period in all its aspects -- Hitler's rise to power; his establishment of a dictatorship in Germany; the abolition of the rule of law; the persecution of all kinds of political opponents; the racially motivated persecution of the Jews, culminating in the Holocaust; the reticence and opposition of German citizens; and, Germany's instigation of World War II -- is compulsory teaching matter at all types of schools in Germany and at all levels of education. The Holocaust is treated as the most important aspect of the period of Nazi rule.

Quite a departure from the Japanese approach.

I firmly believe that the difference between Japan and Germany's teachings are simply related to how Adolph Hitler came to power in World War II. Hitler can be viewed as anomaly who came into power at the right (or wrong) time when post war Germany was reeling from economic sanctions imposed after World War I with the infamous Treaty of Versailles.

In Japan's case, it had been ruled by emperors for centuries, handed down by birth. The empire was in power and authorized the aggression that the Japanese military espoused during the 1930's and 1940's.

Given the circumstances, it's easier for Germany to dismiss the sordid past of World War II than it is for Japan. Imperial leadership has been a legacy for centuries in Japan, Hitler can be dismissed, the emperors who ruled Japan for thousands of years cannot.

Japan still has an emperor, Emperor Akihito although his power is more akin to Britain's monarchy, more symbolic than political.

Emperor Akihito celebrated his 80th birthday December 23.

This handout photo taken on Nov 14, 2013, and released on Monday, Dec 23, 2013, by the Imperial Household Agency of Japan shows Emperor Akihito (left) and Empress Michiko posing at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. Thousands of people thronged Japan's Imperial Palace on Monday to celebrate Emperor Akihito's 80th birthday, as he lauded his wife for standing by him in his "lonely" pursuit of leading the world's oldest monarchy. -- PHOTO: AFP / IMPERIAL HOUSEHOLD AGENCY OF JAPAN
Japan's Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko
On the other side of the debate with those like Professor Fujioka, was Saburo Ienaka (1913- 2002). Mr. Ienaka fought with officials about educating children about the past and was met with stiff resistance.

Saburo Ienaka (1913- 2002)
Mr. Ienaka brought several lawsuits, which are rare in Japan, to force the Ministry of Education to include the past actions of the Japanese military to be taught in school.

However, as committed to changing the textbooks as he was, the resistance to change was equal to the task.

From his obituary in The New York Times from December 8, 2002:

He succeeded in forcing the government to commission a new generation of textbooks, and to make public the changes it forced on publishers. But in 1993 the Supreme Court ruled that the government was well within its rights when it forced Mr. Ienaga to delete uncomfortable details about the Japanese invasions of Korea and Manchuria, and the rapes and killings that accompanied its occupation of East and Southeast Asia.

The obituary also quotes Ienaka admitting that his efforts were essentially futile which was borne out by the aforementioned article written by Miriko Oi:

"Unfortunately, the Japanese government is very weak against any pressure from foreign countries, but very strong against any criticism from its own people," he once said. "So no matter what you do in Japan itself, nothing changes."
Whenever the outcry comes from the United States, or China, or South Korea, he said, the government proclaims its willingness to change.
"Of course," he concluded, "they don't feel it."

Here in the United States, we tend to have a myopic view of the world. Although we are taught world history, it is mainly viewed through a European prism.

How we view the Asian world is relative to past wars as we generally tend to measure our history through wars. The American Revolution, The Civil War, World War II an The Vietnamese War are at the forefront of our consciousness when we think about American history.

It is rather sad that the so-called Korean Conflict and World War I are not as prominent in the minds of most Americans. World War I is viewed almost as a sideshow that happened so long ago that nobody really mentions it. That is laughable considering the Civil War which gets so much attention occurred a full 50 years before World War I.

The Korean Conflict is almost an afterthought, ironically even though American troops still occupy the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea. With current dictator Kim Jong Un ratcheting up the rhetoric, who knows how things will play out in North Korea.

Personally, I think the downfall of this dictatorship is inevitable, as the cruelty continuing under Kim Jong Un's regime will eventually lead to an uprising as we've seen recently in Libya, Egypt and Syria.

The most recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan are essentially still in gear and have actually lasted longer than all the aforementioned.

Now before anyone thinks that we in America are completely open and honest about our own past, let us not forget what happened to Native Americans. Our history classes aren't much better recanting the events of the 1800's when many tribes were forced off their lands and in many cases massacred by our government.

We are taught about Custer's Last Stand from the perspective as if it were heroic that so few faced so many and all perished.

General George Armstrong Custer
The very name Custer's Last Stand evokes heroism when in fact it was actually the Indians' last stand against the US government:

On the morning of June 25, 1876, Lieutenant Colonel George A. Custer and the 7th Cavalry charged into battle against Lakota Sioux and Northern Cheyenne Indians. Custer's orders were to wait for reinforcements at the mouth of the Little Big Horn River before attacking the Indians, but Chief Sitting Bull had been spotted nearby, and Custer was impatient to attack.

A treaty had given the Sioux exclusive rights to the Black Hills, but when gold was later discovered in the area, white miners flocked to the territory. Despite the treaty, the U.S. government ordered the Indians away from the invading settlers and back to their reservations.

Custer's job was to force the Indians back to their reservations. Some of the Indians refused to leave their sacred land, and other hunters were camped in remote places and never learned of the order. The U.S. Army prepared for battle anyway.

Custer planned to attack the Indian camp from three sides, but Chief Sitting Bull was ready for them. The first two groups, led by Captain Benteen and Major Reno, were immediately forced to retreat to one side of the river, where they continued to fight as best they could. Custer was not as lucky.

Custer's troops charged the Indians from the north. Quickly encircled by their enemy, Custer and 265 of his soldiers were killed in less than an hour. The Indians retreated two days later when the troops Custer had been ordered to wait for arrived.

The Battle of Little Big Horn was a short-lived victory for the Native Americans. Federal troops soon poured into the Black Hills. While many Native Americans surrendered, Sitting Bull escaped to Canada.

Chief Sitting Bull

More on Chief Sitting Bull here

That's not exactly a heroic moment in US history when you consider that a treaty was broken by the US government because gold had been discovered in the area that was "given" to the Indians.

Interestingly enough, the US National Park Service has a website dedicated to the LittleBighorn Battlefield where the following appears:

Little Bighorn, A Place of Reflection

This area memorializes the U.S. Army's 7th Cavalry and the Sioux and Cheyenne in one of the Indian's last armed efforts to preserve their way of life. Here on June 25 and 26 of 1876, 263 soldiers, including Lt. Col. George A. Custer and attached personnel of the U.S. Army, died fighting several thousand Lakota, and Cheyenne warriors.

However, there has been no attempt to whitewash the reasons that the battle occurred, the website also tells the true story of how the treaty was broken because gold deposits were found:

Tension between the U.S. and the Lakota escalated in 1874, when Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer was ordered to make an exploration of the Black Hills inside the boundary of the Great Sioux Reservation. Custer was to map the area, to locate a suitable site for a future military post, and to make note of the natural resources. During the expedition, professional geologists discovered deposits of gold. Word of the discovery of mineral wealth caused an invasion of miners and entrepreneurs to the Black Hills in direct violation of the Treaty of 1868. The U.S. negotiated with the Lakota to purchase the Black Hills, but the offered price was rejected by the Lakota. The climax came in the winter of 1875, when the Commissioner of Indian Affairs issued an ultimatum requiring all Sioux to report to a reservation by January 31, 1876. The deadline came with virtually no response, and matters were handed to the military.

I'm not sure how (or if) "Custer's Last Stand" is being taught in schools in the US today, but I sure don't remember them telling us about the treaty being broken over the discovery of gold in the region.

The lesson to be learned from all of this is that actions of the past have consequences for the future. We should not hide the truth from future generations as we all know:

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." – George Santayana

George Santayana
Actions such as Prime Minister Abe visiting the Yasukuni Shrine have consequences.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Phil Robertson and Free Speech

Yes, that's all this is. One man's opinion. Nothing more than that.
For the perpetually outraged, those who can't wait to pounce on anyone who speaks outside the boundaries of political correctness, I'm so sorry to douse the flames because what Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson said is nothing more than that, his opinion.

In case you missed it, and maybe you aren't familiar with who Phil Robertson is, let's back up a bit. Mr. Robertson is a former high school, college and from all accounts, could have been an NFL quarterback. Robertson, now 67, gave up a potential career in the NFL because he is first and foremost, an avid hunter and outdoorsman.

Football season simply interfered with hunting season and that was all Phil needed to make his decision not to play pro football.

Phil was also married at this time with three boys. The other remarkable part of this story is that while in college at Louisiana Tech, Phil Robertson was the starting quarterback keeping NFL Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw on the bench.

As Robertson says, " Bradshaw went for the bucks, I went for the ducks."

Phil Robertson grew up dirt poor in rural Louisiana and has never forgotten his roots nor the skills he learned to survive. You see, hunting is not a hobby for Phil Robertson, it was how his family survived. Just like many from my father's generation, (the WWII generation which are older than Phil) it is ingrained in Phil's DNA not to change his ways. If you watch Duck Dynasty, Phil often admonishes his "yuppie grandkids fresh from the subdivision" that there will be no french fries or McNuggets if it all goes down.

What he is speaking about is the need to have the skills to be able to make do if McDonald's isn't around any longer.Those who either grew up with nothing or have had experience in having everything either taken away or lost it all typically do not lose the instinct to squander or waste. That is the lesson Phil teaches his grandkids.

After college, Robertson rammed around as a bar owner and as he puts it hit rock bottom. He found God and turned his life around and since then has never changed his ways about his faith, family and hunting.

What made Robertson so famous so that he has a reality show about him and his family?

Duck calls.

Phil didn't like the duck calls that were state of the art in the 1970's, so he started making his own which eventually led to his creating a company called Duck Commander which has made him and his family very, very wealthy.

None of the fame and fortune has changed Phil Robertson at all, in fact he sees it as a way for him to deliver God's word, which what he believes is his mission.

Phil Robertson is not the first person to profess his faith in God nor will he be the last. Phil Robertson is a man of great conviction and is very strong is his beliefs. I wrote about his background in brief to illustrate what kind of man he is and where he comes from.

The Controversy

GQ's Drew Magary went down to spend some time in Robertson's home town of West Monroe, Louisiana and wrote an article about what he experienced.

In the article, Magary asked Robertson a question. What followed is typical of how the general media handles any quote that is "controversial"

Here's what was quoted:

“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.”

The quote is pretty much thrown in at the beginning of the article as a teaser as Magary paints a picture about Robertson's convictions and how he speaks his mind.

Here's how the quote was framed in the article:

Out here in these woods, without any cameras around, Phil is free to say what he wants. Maybe a little too free. He’s got lots of thoughts on modern immorality, and there’s no stopping them from rushing out. Like this one:

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.”

Magary is correct, in his element, Phil speaks his mind and if you've ever watched Duck Dynasty, the show pretty much revolves around each family member sitting in front of the camera commenting on what is going on in the show and largely in Phil's case, how he views the world.

That is Phil Robertson.

If you read through the article you will find more in context with the comment Robertson made about homosexuality and society in general:

“We’re Bible-thumpers who just happened to end up on television,” he tells me. “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.”

What does repentance entail? Well, in Robertson’s worldview, America was a country founded upon Christian values (Thou shalt not kill, etc.), and he believes that the gradual removal of Christian symbolism from public spaces has diluted those founding principles. (He and Si take turns going on about why the Ten Commandments ought to be displayed outside courthouses.) He sees the popularity of Duck Dynasty as a small corrective to all that we have lost.

“Everything is blurred on what’s right and what’s wrong,” he says. “Sin becomes fine.”

What, in your mind, is sinful?

“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,” he says. Then he paraphrases 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.”

This is a religious man answering a question honestly. He believes in the Bible and answered the question. For everyone to go into an uproar about a Christian answering a question with an unvarnished answer is truly laughable.

Here's a quote from GLAAD Director of News Ross Murray:

The Robertsons, the family whose duck hunting products have made them a fortune, are breakout stars featured in A&E’s Duck Dynasty. GQ Magazine’s profile of Phil Robertson included some of the vilest and most extreme statements uttered against LGBT people in a mainstream publication. His quote was littered with outdated stereotypes and blatant misinformation.

Murray has to first point out that a) the Robertsons are wealthy which, depending on where you fall on the politically correct spectrum, is a major no-no, then b) labels Robertson's statements as vile and extreme. And c) how dare he make those statements in a mainstream publication!!!!

So let me get this straight, a man makes a comment that he finds a woman to be more desirable than a man, then goes on to state that in his mind, homosexuality is a sin, and that is labeled as vile and extreme?

Well then, I must have missed the part where all religion and heterosexuality were condemned in our society.

 Yes, Ross Murray, neanderthals like Phil Robertson should go crawl back to their respective caves and never be allowed to speak publicly about their personal beliefs.

You see, Phil Robertson does not care about being politically correct or "saying the right thing" not to stir up controversy. In fact, it's the opposite, he feels that because we as a nation have not spoken up about moral issues that opinions like his are now considered to be vile and extreme by people like Ross Murray.

Here's what's wrong with this whole "controversy":

Why is it that if you do not agree with homosexuality due to religious convictions that it is "vile and extreme"? Phil Robertson is not advocating any ill will toward anyone who, in his view is living in sin, nor is he advocating violence or anything else. He's simply stating his views on the subject.

Whether you agree with him or not, he is entitled to his opinion.

Murray goes on to state:

The statement is far outside of the mainstream understanding of LGBT people. In Louisiana, which passed a constitutional amendment banning marriage equality, 56% of the population support some sort of legal recognition, marriage or civil unions, for gay and lesbian couples according to Public Policy Polling released in August 2013.

So according to Mr. Murray, that because 56% of the population support some form of unions for lesbians and gays, Phil Robertson should toe the line and shut his mouth.

The way I see it, Phil Robertson is in the other 44% that may or may not support that type of lifestyle. Unfortunately, there are small percentage in that 44% that do extreme and vile things, just as there are in the 56 percentile, but I'm pretty certain that Phil Robertson isn't one of them.

And in that same article, let's attack Robertson's Christianity as well:

"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," said GLAAD spokesperson Wilson Cruz. "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."

Why is it necessary to vilify and demonize anyone who has a contrary view to what anyone else believes? Phil Robertson didn't. He simply stated his beliefs. He didn't say anyone who is gay is vile and extreme, he simply stated that he believes it is a sin and that will deny you entrance to heaven. Whether you or anyone else believes that or not doesn't matter. It is not a vile and extreme belief, it is something that many others believe but because of the political climate we live in, are afraid to say because they will be vilified as well.

Liberals preach tolerance, except when you disagree with them. Then you're vile and extreme.

A&E is wrong to "suspend" Phil Robertson which is also laughable because the new season starts on January 15 and I'm sure that Phil will be in all the new episodes which were obviously shot well before the Magary interview.

If A&E wants to kill the goose that laid the golden egg, over what should be fairly benign comments by a man whose religious beliefs are hardly a secret, then so be it. An average of 12 million viewers watch Duck Dynasty each week. When you consider that new episodes air at 10 pm, that number of viewers is absolutely remarkable.

To put that in perspective, Breaking Bad widely considered to be the most viewed series in cable history, had 14 million viewers in its finale.

I'm sure Phil Robertson would gladly walk away from A&E without compromising his convictions.

The Robertson family issued this statement:

We want to thank all of you for your prayers and support.  The family has spent much time in prayer since learning of A&E's decision.  We want you to know that first and foremost we are a family rooted in our faith in God and our belief that the Bible is His word.  While some of Phil’s unfiltered comments to the reporter were coarse, his beliefs are grounded in the teachings of the Bible. Phil is a Godly man who follows what the Bible says are the greatest commandments: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” and “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Phil would never incite or encourage hate.We are disappointed that Phil has been placed on hiatus for expressing his faith, which is his constitutionally protected right.We have had a successful working relationship with A&E but, as a family, we cannot imagine the show going forward without our patriarch at the helm.  We are in discussions with A&E to see what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty.   Again, thank you for your continued support of our family.

It's too bad that this has become such a firestorm, but it does remind of the Chick-fil-a controversy from the summer of 2012. 

Somehow, both Chick-fil-a and Phil Robertson will carry on.

In case you're not familiar with Phil and how he speaks, here's a video that pretty much summarizes who he is in about 2 minutes:


He is who he is and makes no bones about it.
You don't like him or what he says, don't watch the show or read his books, etc.
Pretty simple.

And for those of you who think that Phil Robertson is an ignorant, uneducated hillbilly, the man has a masters degree in education.

He is not a vile and extreme man, please stop with the faux outrage over someone expressing themselves.

Isn't that what all "tolerant" liberals want?
For everyone to express themselves?