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Faith & Freedom Coalition Announces Grassroots Campaign Against A&E Network
Denounces Suspension of “Duck Dynasty” Star and Family Patriarch Phil Robertson as “Brazen Act of Anti-Christian Bigotry”
The Faith & Freedom Coalition announced today that it has launched a grassroots campaign to encourage its 800,000 members and activists to cease watching A&E Network until “Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson is reinstated to the highly-rated program. Mr. Robertson was suspended this week by the network after he expressed his Christian faith and beliefs, including directly paraphrasing the book of Corinthians in the Bible, in an interview with GQ magazine.
FFC’s grassroots campaign began today with outbound phone calls and an email blast and text message to 250,000 local FFC activists. They are being urged to contact A&E executives to protest this act of anti-Christian bigotry and urge that Mr. Robertson be reinstated to “Duck Dynasty,” one of the highest-rated programs on cable television. The email and phone campaign will be followed by over 750,000 “Action Alert” postcards and mailings urging FFC activists to contact A&E to complain about the network’s failure to defend Mr. Robertson’s right to his Christian faith and beliefs. The Robertson family’s reality program has been a major hit for A&E, largely because of their entertaining homespun mix of rural folkways, traditional morality, and Christian faith.
“Phil Robertson’s suspension is a brazen act of anti-Christian bigotry,” said Ralph Reed, chairman of Faith & Freedom Coalition. “In the interview with GQ, he never represented his views and values as being those of A&E or the producers of ‘Duck Dynasty.’ He was specifically asked about his views on sin and God’s best plan for humanity and he answered honestly, forthrightly, even directly paraphrasing the Bible (1 Corinthians 6:9). He foreswore any hatred or discrimination against any other person. And his comments were based on his faith in God, not animus directed at gays or others who might be different from him. To suspend Robertson under these circumstances is sanctioning him for holding Christian faith and beliefs, and it is a sign of a broader intolerance, bigotry, and discrimination against Christians that has no place in America.”
Reed has also written a letter to A&E urging that Mr. Robertson be reinstated and requesting an apology and/or clarification regarding its treatment of one of its most valued and popular stars after making a public profession of Christian faith and beliefs.
“Sadly, A&E is in danger of destroying one of the most valuable franchises in the television industry and offending 40 million Americans in the process,” said Reed. “If its management is smart, they will move swiftly to repair the damage before it is too late.”
Faith & Freedom Coalition is a grassroots public policy organization with over 800,000 members and activists in 400 local chapters and 32 state affiliates working to advance sound public policy that strengthens the family and promotes common-sense, time-honored values.