Tags: duck | Robertson | petition | goal

Petition for 'Duck Dynasty' Star's Return Hits Quarter Million Goal

By Drew MacKenzie   |   Friday, 27 Dec 2013 10:51 AM

More than 250,000 people have signed a petition to A&E demanding that Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson be reinstated on the hit show.

Robertson, the 67-year-old family patriarch, was suspended indefinitely by the TV cable channel after he made remarks that have been slammed as homophobic and racist in an interview with GQ magazine.

The "I Stand with Phil" petition from Faith Driven Consumer, an online Christian organization, had surpassed by Friday midday its stated goal of 250,000 signatures.

The organization had announced the night before by Twitter that it was 2,000 signatures shy of reaching its mark, while urging supporters of Robertson to sign up.

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A letter accompanying the petition accuses A&E of "intolerant, discriminatory, and punitive treatment" and criticizes gays and lesbians for being "un-American" by attacking Robertson for freely expressing his opinions.

The letter said, "Mr. Robertson’s comments in GQ Magazine are simply reflective of a Biblical view of sexuality, marriage, and family — a view that has stood the test of time for thousands of years and continues to be held by the majority of Americans and today’s world as a whole.

"Many members of the LGBT community may not agree with this view, but the notion that a free-thinking American should be discriminated against simply for expressing a perspective that is in conflict with another is patently un-American and flies in the face of true tolerance and civility."

In his interview, Robertson called homosexuality a sin and compared it to bestiality, infidelity and drunkenness. Asked what was sinful, he said, "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 also said that before welfare, blacks "were godly, they were happy; no one was singing the blues."

The Duck Dynasty patriarch has been supported by many conservatives, including former Alaska governor Sarah Palin and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal. But he has been denounced by the gay rights organization GLAAD and by Rev. Jesse Jackson who said the alleged racist comments reflect "white privilege."

Duck Dynasty is due to return for its new season on January 15 with pre-recorded episodes which will include footage of Robertson. Family members have warned A&E that they may not continue the show without him.

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