December 27th, 2013
08:50 AM ET
7 months ago

Alabama lawmaker to propose legislation backing 'Duck Dynasty' star

Updated 12/27/2013 at 2:20pm ET

(CNN) - The controversial comments about homosexuality made by "Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson have come up in conversations across the country in the past two weeks and may make its way to the Alabama state legislature next month.

Republican state Sen. Jerry Fielding plans to introduce a symbolic resolution in support of the Louisiana family's patriarch.

What Robertson said on homosexuality, Fielding told CNN Friday, is "supported by the biblical scriptures."

"For too long, the silent majority has remained silent when we ought to be speaking up" for what Fielding described as a Constitutional right to speak one's mind.

A&E suspended Robertson after he told GQ magazine in its January edition that homosexuality is a sin and put it in the same category as bestiality and promiscuity. The network's actions came after gay rights groups, such as the Human Rights Campaign, called on Robertson to step down.

The suspension ignited an uproar among those backing Robertson. An online petition against A&E, for example, surpassed its goal of gathering 250,000 signatures.

Palin, Cruz, Jindal: 'Duck Dynasty' star suspended over intolerance of politically correct

In an interview Friday with CNN's Brianna Keilar on "Newsroom," Fielding made sure to note that he didn't agree with everything Robertson said, particularly his comments about race and comparing homosexuality to bestiality.

Instead, Fielding said it's important to speak up for those exercising "religious rights provided by the Constitution."

The senator earlier told CNN affiliate WBRC that the resolution was not meant to portray anti-gay messages.

"We just don't want people running over people that believe in the Bible and standing up for Jesus and God and doing those things the Scriptures teaches us to do," he said.

Alabama state Rep. Patricia Todd, the only openly gay lawmaker in the Alabama state legislature, agreed Robertson has a right to express his religious beliefs, WBRC reported.

But the Democrat added, "it's not one of the most important things facing Alabama that we need to be taking time to even discuss in the legislature."

A fan of the show, she also said she wasn't surprised at all by his remarks.

"Yes, I've watched "Duck Dynasty." I thought it was quite amusing. I liked it. I still will continue to watch it," she said. "(For) most of us, it was like no big deal. Who cares? Yes, of course he thinks that.”

Todd told WBRC she expects Fielding's resolution to pass the state legislature.

– CNN's Ashley Killough and Bryan Koenig contributed to this report.


Filed under: Alabama • Gay rights
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. Tim C

    Everything must be perfect in Alabama that they have time to waste passing legislation designed to affirm religeous beliefs of a reality TV redneck. But then Alabama has never been known for forward thinking.

    December 27, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    @ tom l

    Ah, yes. Flattery. Will get you ... what exactly?

    But, hey, tom. No problem. You want to call out my name in your little rants, go for it. But do (using your own advice) be
    consistent. I covered all three in my comment: The ducks, the McClaine, and the X-mas panderer articles.
    I don't watch the ducks, so I am sorry I can't comment on the A&E duck marathon.

    Relevancy, tom? Oh, yes. I agree. There is none. As usual you start a conversation and then try too hard to U-turn away from what you said. I simply asked for clarification. You are known to ramble on (and on and on).

    And, thank you. I had a lovely Christmas.

    December 27, 2013 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  3. Tampa Tim

    Has anyone in Alabama introduced legislation in support of Meatloaf for being fired on the Trump comedy show?

    December 27, 2013 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  4. Rudy NYC

    Wow, Rudy made me laugh!

    "Mr Phil" and "Mr Duck"............too funny. Reminds of a joke I once heard..................
    ----------------------------
    I do try to keep it light by playing with words, and double meanings. A joke inspired me to write it.

    December 27, 2013 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  5. don in albuquerque

    @rs–It should have become very clear now, that CNN no longer reports the news. They invent the news.

    December 27, 2013 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  6. Sniffit

    Outreach! Legislate the hate!!!

    December 27, 2013 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  7. Lynda/Minnesota

    "CNN has lost any credibility of being a real news outlet with the nonsense stories featured in this blog, while real stories go unmentioned. But, hey, that why there are so many other places to visit on the web!"

    Oh, absolutely, rs. Absolutely. I hadn't planned on spending much time on the ticker today.
    But, well ... you understand. One thing led to another (and so on).
    I doubt anyone takes CNN seriously anymore ... either from the left, from the middle, or from the right.

    December 27, 2013 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  8. rick7809

    Breaking News.....The Alabama State legislature to take up new ground breaking legislation which will have absolutely no effect at all on anyone's real life.

    December 27, 2013 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  9. ProudDem

    No his first amendment rights were not violated. The GOP senator is just trying to make some political points off of this, no surprise. Rep. Todd is playing it smartly, not seeing any benefit in getting sucked into something so stupid. I too am surprised though that his comments about how happy blacks were in the deep south during his childhood got buried in all of this. That too is his right to say, but it shows even more plainly what a complete idiot he his.

    December 27, 2013 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  10. Sniffit

    "And why was A&E airing a marathon of Duck Dynasty? Yesterday Lynda/Sniffit were complaining about Nikki Haley pandering. And this isn't pandering? My goodness. This is the definition of pandering."

    What are you trying to say here? Not clear at all. Are you trying to say it's "pandering" for A&E, a profit-oriented private company, to try to grab up viewership with a marathon of one of their shows and maybe try to mollify some of their viewers/customers' butthurt over the whole incident? Calling that "pandering" in the same sense of when a politician disgusts us with superficial self-aggrandizement via wedge issues...that seems a bit silly to me. It's marketing. There's a difference. Context matters.

    December 27, 2013 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  11. John the Historian

    Who care what the bible says for anyone depending which bible one uses. The USA does have separation of church and state. The country is tired of mostly GOP members voting to legislate morality. Phil Robertson's words were very offensive to any LGBT people. No one wants to be compared to bestiality and no one is sent to jail for promiscuity. The Christian Right needs to stick to their charity work in their churches if they do it all. Keep religious dogma out of civil law. All true tolerant Americans should boycott Duck Dynasty. A@E had a right to fire him. Phil needs to stay in his church if he wants to preach.

    December 27, 2013 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  12. Anonymous

    Jesse Jackson finally commented on the DD controversy yesterday. Conclusion: This horse has been beaten beyond recognition. Go Ducks!

    December 27, 2013 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  13. Sniffit

    "I just think it's time that the overwhelming majority of people begin to speak up and speak out on these issues," Fielding said."

    There it is again: that fervently, vehemently stoked delusion that these Krischun Nashun bigots and Teatrolls hold that tells them everything they believe is actually also the belief of the "overwhelming majority" and that everything they are saying and spewing and tinfoil-hatting about is agreed with by the "overwhelming majority."

    Hint: They're wrong (that's what makes it a delusion).

    December 27, 2013 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  14. sharon12345

    Duck Dynasty does not do a good thing for the South. It shows them as still being racist. I was in the south many years ago and for the first time saw bathroom doors that said COLORED. I saw restaurant doors that said "NO COLOREDS." The language that was used was disgusting. A&E can no longer claim the title Arts & Entertainment. Arts was demolished when this program was allowed on. The frightening thing is that it shows how many bigoted people are still in this country. They are really just our version of the Taliban.

    December 27, 2013 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  15. IA

    Jesse Jackson hit the airwaves yesterday regarding the DD controversy. Conclusion: Although I could not understand what he was saying (mush mouth syndrome, I guess). this horse has officially been beaten to death!

    December 27, 2013 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  16. Rudy NYC

    Sniffit wrote:

    "And why was A&E airing a marathon of Duck Dynasty? Yesterday Lynda/Sniffit were complaining about Nikki Haley pandering. And this isn't pandering? My goodness. This is the definition of pandering."

    What are you trying to say here?
    ---------------------–
    Absolutely nothing. It sounds more like he's critcizing the state Senator for pandering than anything else. But, that would only make sense if he stayed on topic, which he doesn't. He's trying hard to say nothing. He can't even tell you what it means.

    December 27, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  17. tom l

    @Sniffit
    ""And why was A&E airing a marathon of Duck Dynasty? Yesterday Lynda/Sniffit were complaining about Nikki Haley pandering. And this isn't pandering? My goodness. This is the definition of pandering."

    What are you trying to say here? Not clear at all. Are you trying to say it's "pandering" for A&E, a profit-oriented private company, to try to grab up viewership with a marathon of one of their shows and maybe try to mollify some of their viewers/customers' butthurt over the whole incident? Calling that "pandering" in the same sense of when a politician disgusts us with superficial self-aggrandizement via wedge issues...that seems a bit silly to me. It's marketing. There's a difference. Context matters."

    ====

    I already posted that this wasn't one of my better posts. :) Didn't make much sense to me after I read it again. You're right that this is totally different than Nikki Haley (and I really don't think Haley was pandering. She's a gun enthusiast. Sorry, but there are people out there that are and since they're legal there's nothing wrong with it)

    December 27, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  18. Silence DoGood

    So instead of passing legislation that might help someone or do something, they pass legislation to endorsing a particular religious belief. Isn't that unconstitutional?

    December 27, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  19. tom l

    But Sniffit, you gotta admit that A&E running the marathon of Duck Dynasty is ridiculous. If they suspended him, then they shouldn't be running the shows since they say he is so offensive. Pretty hypocritical, don't you think?

    December 27, 2013 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  20. tom l

    "And why was A&E airing a marathon of Duck Dynasty? Yesterday Lynda/Sniffit were complaining about Nikki Haley pandering. And this isn't pandering? My goodness. This is the definition of pandering."

    What are you trying to say here?
    -------–
    Absolutely nothing. It sounds more like he's critcizing the state Senator for pandering than anything else. But, that would only make sense if he stayed on topic, which he doesn't. He's trying hard to say nothing. He can't even tell you what it means.

    ====

    At least I admit when I make a silly comment rather than just make something up to support what I say (a la Rudy).

    December 27, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  21. Anonymous

    @Anonymous:

    Would that be the Oregon Ducks? Too many Anonymous here........guess I will change my name.........again.

    December 27, 2013 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  22. sharon12345

    His family's problem is because of inbreeding. His description of gays was over the top and unnecessary. He stokes the bigotry that should be erased in the 21st century. The Pope is more loving than this guy. A&E has every right to cancel or not cancel a program. I'm sure a contract was signed. We just don't know the terms of the contract.

    December 27, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  23. Silence DoGood

    Legislation endorsing a particular religion is unconstitutional.

    December 27, 2013 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  24. Doris

    I'd like to thank Mr. Phil from the bottom of my heart for reminding me why I'm not a Christian.

    December 27, 2013 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. Sniffit

    "But Sniffit, you gotta admit that A&E running the marathon of Duck Dynasty is ridiculous. If they suspended him, then they shouldn't be running the shows since they say he is so offensive. Pretty hypocritical, don't you think?"

    They own the shows. They can do whatever they want with them and trying to maintain good will with their viewers while it gets sorted out makes sense. I gather he's not making those kinds of comments during the taping of it, so it's not like there's any endorsement of what he said in running re-runs. I don't watch this crap anyway...these guys are nothing more than fakers who grew beards and long hair and started wearing bandanas and Walmart camo just to create the image for the show. That's not "reality", it's "reality tv." Just google up the pics of them from before this whole thing.

    December 27, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
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