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Dan Savage: Phil Robertson's Racism is Much More Offensive Than His Anti-gay Comments - VIDEO

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Dan Savage stopped by Anderson Cooper's CNN show last week to weigh in on the Duck Dynasty controversy and his thoughts on why Phil Robertson isn't getting as much blowback for the racist comments he made in the now-infamous GQ interview as he did for the anti-gay remarks.

Said Savage:

I actually thought what he said about African-Americans in the South under Jim Crow was so much more offensive. At a time when an African-American looked funny at a white person they could be lynched, oddly enough he never heard any of them complaining to him about the circumstances...but this is America and sex is [something] we'd rather be talking about than race or anything else. So the fact that he invoked gay people's rear ends means that's going to be the conversation instead of the really patently offensive, absurdly revisionist things he said about African-Americans."


[via RealClearPolitics]


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  1. Agreed!

    Posted by: kerry | Dec 24, 2013 8:34:01 AM

  2. i have to agree with Dan on this and my jaw dropped when i heard Robertson say the things about African-Americans, maybe because we are so used to the stale lines they use about lgbtq. the only ones he didn't offend were WASP's, their wives & their progeny.

    Posted by: mike/ | Dec 24, 2013 8:41:13 AM

  3. Once again, Dan Savage nails it. Phil Robertson is the typical white trash southerner who is still trying to whitewash what was a brutal chapter in the history of the South, that must never be forgotten. See "12 Years a Slave" for a glimpse at how Blacks were really treated. Robertson is a foul-mouthed and verbally vicious bigot.

    Posted by: Jerry | Dec 24, 2013 8:49:48 AM

  4. and that's why damn fool in illinois, ian bayne, who compared phil to Rosa Parks is an even bigger menace.
    for now, at least, phil is only the second most ig-orant man in 'murica.

    Posted by: verbocityeric | Dec 24, 2013 9:04:25 AM

  5. Dan is absolutely correct. Umerica doesn't like to discuss their historic level of ignorance and hate of indigenous and people of color. We are the greatest -ain't we?
    It is pathetic and very sad legacy of intolerance and misinformation.

    Posted by: Nick | Dec 24, 2013 9:22:45 AM

  6. Most blacks don't tolerate gay people.

    Posted by: stu | Dec 24, 2013 9:39:02 AM

  7. This country has always been transformative. And folks like MLK jr. knew this. Our best, greatest hope is that it continues it's trajectory forward to a truly better and equal place.

    And its happening; We throw light on cockroaches like Phil, and all the other bugs shake out of the Ian Bayne.

    But to say that the country has given a pass on Phil's vulgar racism isn't correct.

    It s the MEDIA who have done that; The same media that thought NOTHING of Rush Limbaugh playing "Barrack The Magic Negro" while laughing and spitting doughnut crumbs at his caller screen.

    Posted by: q | Dec 24, 2013 9:44:34 AM

  8. @ Stu - that sounds nice and whiney. Even if it were true (which I doubt), does that make anything he said about African Americans any less offensive?

    Posted by: Mike in the Tundra | Dec 24, 2013 9:47:53 AM

  9. Per Julia Sugarbaker --Alright!! That's it. You don't care about history; you just want to sell it. You don't even sell it honestly. You just want to sell the myth.........the myth of the Old South. You all know that myth, don't ya? Happy darkies singing in the field while Miss Scarlet primps around throwing hissy fits. Well that's an insult. It isn't the South. It's an insult to all the people who lived and died here not so very long ago. We Southerners have had to endure many things. But one thing we Southerners don't have to endure individuals who decide to voice opinions on TV and then complain about the consequences they face.

    Posted by: MARTIN | Dec 24, 2013 9:55:20 AM

  10. I could not believe the vile, racist and homophobic remarks tumbling from Robertson's mouth. All of it was terrible, but the ignorance that he displayed when speaking about the "happy" blacks was painful to hear and it shows how far a very large segment of Americans have NOT come. I was surprised I didn't hear him ranting about the young bucks harmonizing to "Swing Low, Sweet Chariot" while hoisting bales of cotton or while cleaning out whitey's latrine. Dan is right. This is a real issue we need to address.

    Posted by: crb | Dec 24, 2013 10:00:24 AM

  11. @STU
    Let me correct that for you, “Most Christians don't tolerate gay people.” Their color has nothing to do with it.
    Also allow me to add that, “Most Southern Christians don't tolerate black people.”
    And “Most Homosexual trolls don't tolerate black people.” This last one is you.

    Posted by: 1♥ | Dec 24, 2013 10:00:46 AM

  12. A friend said "If he did that to black people he would be vilified" and I was like... UHHH.

    Posted by: Fenrox | Dec 24, 2013 10:04:10 AM

  13. You nailed it verbocityeric. Because according to Phil Robertson Rosa Parks did not exist.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Dec 24, 2013 10:04:39 AM

  14. You can like him or not, but he is smart.
    Bring the racist part of Phil's interview to the limelight and see if the nutjobs come to defend him again on his racism as they did with his homophobia.

    Posted by: jjose712 | Dec 24, 2013 10:12:47 AM

  15. Also, I love savage, so much, he is a personal hero of mine, but, WHAT THE HELL IS THAT JACKET DUDE?

    Posted by: Fenrox | Dec 24, 2013 10:14:18 AM

  16. I thought the same... and then my own racism kicked in. I assumed the gays were getting all the attention because we're better wired on blogs like this one.

    More likely, black people have been ignoring d-bags like this guy for a long time & this is just one more day.

    Posted by: pete n sfo | Dec 24, 2013 10:23:20 AM

  17. Dan is so correct, bigotry is wrong at all levels.

    Posted by: Lance Stoll | Dec 24, 2013 10:50:48 AM

  18. spot on. I have been waiting for someone who speaks better than I ever will to say this. Thanks so much.

    Posted by: Raymond Jarvis | Dec 24, 2013 10:58:30 AM

  19. @Fenrox

    Agreed! Jacket has to go. You should never match your jacket and your hair color or you jacket and your couch. Aren't those rules in the handbook?

    As an aside, I had to explain to a friend's daughter the "one slutty item" rule. Which is you can wear one slutty item and look edgy (one of: animal print, high heels, metallic fabric, short skirt, or low-cut top). But two or more and you look like you're for sale. Please spread the word. Some of these kids need help (I'm talking to you Miley Cyrus!).

    Posted by: GeoffreyPS | Dec 24, 2013 10:59:28 AM

  20. That Silver Fox with those blue eyes is the dreamiest. Must be nice to wake up next to that each morning. :-)

    Posted by: Mike Ryan | Dec 24, 2013 11:11:32 AM


    The man literally stated that life was better for black people, and they *ahem* "behaved better" in the Jim Crow South. Riiiiiiight.
    The GALL.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Dec 24, 2013 11:28:36 AM

  22. Well said Q.

    Dan isn't the first to say this but he is the first one with visibility. MANY right here on this site called out his racism right along with the homo bigotry. But as Q said the major media focused on the anti-gay remarks.

    African Americans couldn't be targets for their 'religious liberty' argument. They didn't want to come across as racists. But LGBT could because 'religious liberty' don'tchaknow. Racism, better not to go there. Bigotry, full steam ahead, just make sure all the media know to call it religious liberty (Megyn Kelly interviewing Jeremy Hooper).

    Posted by: SERIOUSLY | Dec 24, 2013 11:46:53 AM

  23. Finally. A lot of people criticizing Phil Robertson have let their side get away with whining "religious persecution, religious persecution" over and over and over.

    The obvious retort was "what about his racist comments"-- which can't be glossed over by trying to run and hide his bigotry behind the bible. But very few people challenging Phil Robertson brought it up. I found that a very odd-- and stupid-- strategy. So thanks Dan Savage for finally bringing to the forefront that Phil Robertson isn't just an anti-gay bigot-- he's an all-around bigot.

    Posted by: bobbyjoe | Dec 24, 2013 12:01:17 PM

  24. Good on Dan for pointing this out, and thanks Towleroad for publicizing this further.

    Posted by: SoLeftImRight | Dec 24, 2013 1:02:26 PM

  25. Dan Savage, you nailed it. Thank you for saying what needed to be said. Phil Robertson's revisionist racism is on a par with the rest of that Tea Party evangelical effluvia who will tell us that the American Civil War was actually "The War Against Northern Aggression".

    Posted by: jamal49 | Dec 24, 2013 1:16:50 PM

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