The memorable words of T.S. Eliot in the Four Quartets come to mind — “Humankind cannot bear very much reality.” This goes particularly for toney producers of reality shows, who are unaccustomed to having one of the swamp people emerge from the fens to inform them, denizens of a sophisticated and urbane cosmopolis as they are, that the human body was given just one sex organ and the poochute is not it.
Perhaps you remember Wilson for rape apologism, writing two books about how awesome slavery was (including for black people – you know, like how pre-Civil Rights Jim Crow was also great for black people according to Duck Commander) and then tells black people and women that they need to listen to him on sexuality and racial issues. That he would defend a man who compared homosexuality to bestiality and said that black people were happy during Jim Crow but are entitled now should come as no surprise at all.
That critique needs to stand on its own. After all, while imagining a rape scenario to critique (read: scare) Sarah Moon’s critique of his Rape Apologism, he also imagines rapists should suffer lynchings – more racist dogwhistling keying into the White Supremacist myth that white women need protection primarily from black, virile men in order to keep the races pure.
John Piper recently hosted Wilson and let him blarb for over an hour about how he’s so clearly not racist and how discussions of racism need to be two ways. Douglas Wilson, according to Douglas Wilson, has a lot to teach black people and they need to listen to him. Piper and his The Gospel Coalition still unabashedly support Wilson. And millions of White Christians organize to support Phil Robertson, before and after his racist crap.
It’s probably telling that so many conservative Christians were supporting Duck Dynasty and its “Soft Patriarchy” Christianity since the beginning. The show centers on men doing things that men do – leading, being outdoors, hunting, goofing around. Women, on the other hand, as domesticated backdrops provide an impetus for humor through what is understood to the viewers as nagging.
This is in keeping with the complementarian views of conservative Christianity featuring a Misogynistic God who does not permit women to lead over men, who relegates females to strict supportive (and often silent) roles.
In light of these ways of limiting the role and function of people that are not male, are not straight, are not white, the Robertson family rushes to defend their patros:
[Phil Robertson’s] beliefs are grounded in the teachings of the Bible. Phil is a Godly man who follows what the Bible says are the greatest commandments: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” and “Love your neighbor as yourself.
I wonder what neighbors the Robertson clan have and how they claim to love them if they are gay, black or female – let alone any other intersectionality. This Misanthrope God doesn’t accept people outside his tribe, his people.
But, rather, I seek to serve an embodied God who became flesh and dwelt among and became the oppressed, the occupied. A God who became a subject of the Roman Empire, who was poor, an ethnic minority who could have sided with the oppressors like the religious and civic leaders in Jerusalem but instead decided to rid the temple of its exclusivist wares and widened the call to serve and love the oppressed and persecuted and hated.