In the grand scheme of things "Duck Dynasty" and the grossly bigoted and racist Phil Robertson do not add up to much. However, the scramble of the potential 2016 Republican candidate field to support Robertson's hate filled and bigoted comments underscores just how sick today's Republican Party has become. These individuals - Bobby Jindal, Ted Cruz, etc. - might just as well have a tattoo saying "I'm a whore" emblazoned across their foreheads. And its all about winning over the fetid swamp that is now the GOP base where racism, religious extremism, rampant homophobia and attacks on anyone deemed "other" are the guiding principles. My Republican fore-bearers, all of whom valued knowledge and intellect, must be rolling over in their graves. Note how the usual hate group leaders are also rushing to Robertson's defense. The Washington Post looks at this race to go as low as conceivably possible. Here are story highlights:
Few could have predicted that the story lines of the hit A&E reality show “Duck Dynasty” and the 2016 presidential contest would converge.But that unexpected mash-up played out Thursday as conservative politicians rushed to defend Phil Robertson, the shaggy-bearded, homespun star of the breakout series, who was suspended by the cable network after his published comments about gays stirred a storm of controversy.Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), a likely White House contender whose state is home to the show about a family that runs a duck-hunting gear enterprise, called Robertson and his family “great citizens.”Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), another probable 2016 candidate, chimed in on Facebook, writing: “If you believe in free speech or religious liberty, you should be deeply dismayed over the treatment of Phil Robertson.”Their embrace of Robertson — who in an interview with GQ described “homosexual behavior” as sinful and compared it to bestiality and infidelity — underscored how gay rights remain a potent political issue for many religious voters on the right.Conservative Christians “feel like they’re under siege in a culture that is increasingly intolerant and discriminatory toward their views, and they don’t feel represented,” said Ralph Reed, founder of the Faith & Freedom Coalition, who noted that Robertson paraphrased from the Bible’s Book of Corinthians in his interview. “I did not get any impression at all that there was animus expressed,” Reed said. By jumping into the “Duck Dynasty” maelstrom, conservative leaders such as Jindal and Cruz sent a clear message to evangelical voters: We’re on your side.Fred Sainz, spokesman for the gay advocacy group Human Rights Campaign, said that “the days of making gay a wedge issue are dated.” “I think they are outliers,” he said of Jindal, Cruz and Palin, adding that he believes they jumped into the “Duck Dynasty” controversy to appeal to “a niche base.” But that base remains a powerful force in the Republican Party, particularly when it comes to presidential primaries in states such as Iowa and South Carolina.[T]he Faith & Freedom Coalition called on its members to launch an e-mail and phone campaign to let A&E know they will boycott the network until Robertson is reinstated.
Fundamental evangelical Christianity is a cancer on American society. Any good works that might be done are far outweighed by the hate, bigotry and division that are its principle fruits. That the GOP continues to prostitute itself to this putrid element of society underscores that the GOP is engaged in a slow form of political suicide.