A&E's decision to suspend Phil Robertson from its reality show "Duck Dynasty" for anti-gay remarks doesn't make sense and will likely make the show flee to another network, according to Noel Sheppard, associate editor of the media watchdog Newsbusters.
"If you're doing a reality TV show about rednecks, why are you surprised when a redneck makes statements that are anti-homosexual? It's not like he was speaking out of character," Sheppard told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"Robertson's views are probably shared by 25 or 30 percent of America, maybe more. Certainly the religious folks that I know, and I don't feel this way … believe that homosexuality is a sin and is immoral. So this is a religious thing. This isn't a bigotry."
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"So I don't know. I'm not sure why [A&E] rushed into this … I'm not sure why they had to be so quick," Sheppard said.
Robertson was canned Wednesday by the A&E Network after a magazine interview was published in which he compared homosexuality to having sex with animals.
Sheppard said the cable network should have gauged reaction from those who watch the show around the country.
Currently, several petitions are being circulated that slam A&E and demand Robertson's return, while some gay advocacy groups have applauded the suspension.
"They could've measured America's reaction, they could've measured the reaction of their audience. The reaction has been vicious," he said.
"At this point in time, frankly, I get the feeling … the family [in the series] is going to say, 'OK, fine, good-bye A&E,' and they're going to find another network that's going to put this on. And A&E is going to look very foolish."
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