Phil Robertson: Victim or Offender? - Intercollegiate Studies Institute

Phil Robertson: Victim or Offender?

What to make of Phil Robertson?

In response to comments that Robertson made about homosexuality in the context of a recent GQ interview, A&E network has indefinitely suspended the patriarch of the Christian, conservative family that has made Duck Dynasty a huge hit.

Robertson’s GQ statements included the following:

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

He carried on in a more explicit manner before concluding, “Sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical.”

GLAAD spokesperson Wilson Cruz responded to Robertson’s words thus: “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.”

Set aside Cruz’s ambiguous statement about what “true” Christians do and do not believe about sexual morality. (Is he objecting to Robertson’s actual words, or to the essence of his statement, the first paragraph of which was biblically based? One fears the worst.)

Set aside the question of whether Robertson’s right to free speech is being respected.

Upon this much one should agree: The particular way in which Robertson chose to convey his views on sexual activity was not prudent, and his latter, more explicit comments betray an unhealthy perspective on things sexual. Ron Belgau has pointed this out nicely at Spiritual Friendship, as have others there.

Many Christians have come to Robertson’s defense, sensing that his suspension is another instance of the sexual left’s ideological censoring. I understand that impulse; I think those folks are probably right.

But viral public statements like Robertson’s color how non-Christians perceive the Church to think about sexuality. That being said, I would hope for a more robust defense of the Christian sexual ethic than an appeal to the appeal of the female anatomy.

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