The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) took a direct hit yesterday when A&E announced they were reinstating Phil Robertson on their "Duck Dynasty" show. Mr. Robertson had been suspended from the show over some comments he made about homosexuality in his now famous GQ interview. Mr. Robertson also said he never personally saw black people mistreated in the South during the pre-civil rights era.
In their anger toward A&E's decision, GLAAD resorted to fabricating statements made by Phil Robertson and posting them.
"Phil Robertson should look African American and gay people in the eyes and hear about the hurtful impact of praising Jim Crow laws and comparing gay people to terrorists. If dialogue with Phil is not part of next steps then A+E has chosen profits over African American and gay people – especially its employees and viewers."
Phil Robertson did neither of those things. He shared his personal beliefs about homosexuality and made statements about what he saw growing up. Not once did he praise Jim Crow laws or compare gay people to terrorists. And for GLAAD to post ridiculous falsehoods because they're angry is shameful. When an activist organization begins lying to further their cause they lose any credibility they may have had.
I applaud A&E for reinstating Phil Robertson. Fans of the show will be very happy. (By the way - I don't watch it and never have.) I would have also been impressed if A&E tossed profits to the wind and caved in to GLAAD and other minority groups and stood on the principles they stated at the beginning of this controversy. That would have been a courageous thing to do.
They didn't reinstate Robertson for the fans. In the end they made a sound business decision and reinstated Robertson so the show could go on and the advertising profits could continue. After all - a TV network is a for-profit business. And "Duck Dynasty" is extremely profitable.
To GLAAD I would say - keep fighting the fight but fight it honestly. And stop trying to stifle free speech with which you disagree. The American people who disagree with you don't try to stop you from expressing your ideas and beliefs. You should have the same tolerance for them.