Baltimore-based Under Armour, the athletic apparel manufacturer, will maintain its ties to the “Duck Dynasty” franchise and the family of its outspoken patriarch Phil Robertson despite the uproar over Robertson’s statements against gays and blacks and his eventual suspension by the A&E network. The Baltimore Sun reports that Under Armor, while not condoning the remarks made by Robertson in an interview with GQ Magazine, will continue to do business with the Robertson family.
“The recent comments in the GQ article are not reflective of Under Armour’s beliefs and do not represent our point of view,” the company said in a statement. “As a company, we are committed to diversity and inclusion and believe in treating everyone equally and with respect.”
According to the Sun, “Under Armour outfits ‘Buck Commander’, a spin-off of the ‘Duck Dynasty’ show on the Outdoor Channel… It also sells hats and other sunglasses and other ‘Duck Dynasty’ merchandise. ‘Duck Dynasty’ star Willie Robertson recently appeared in a Winter Olympics-themed TV spot for Under Armour.”
When asked by GQ what is sinful, Phil Robertson replied, “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 says. Then he paraphrases Corinthians: “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.”
GLAAD called the comments “vile and extreme” and said Robertson’s statements are “littered with outdated stereotypes and blatant misinformation.”
Disappointed at his personal comments and stating that they are not reflective of “Duck Dynasty,” A&E responded to GLAAD: “His personal views in no way reflect those of A+E Networks, who have always been strong supporters and champions of the LGBT community. The network has placed Phil under hiatus from filming indefinitely.”