Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson’s views on homosexuality have been condemned by many as “hate speech,” yet his words were infinitely less savage than those contained in the Old Testament.
If we are to accept that Robertson’s rhetoric represents hate speech, then the Bible should immediately be banned because it openly incites violence against gays.
Compare what Robertson told GQ Magazine to what appears in Leviticus 20:13.
Robertson: “It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man’s anus. That’s just me. I’m just thinking: There’s more there! She’s got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I’m saying? But hey, sin: It’s not logical, my man. It’s just not logical…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.”
Leviticus 20:13: “If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltiness is upon them.” (NASB)
“If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.” (ESV)
Robertson also paraphrased another part of the Bible – Corinthians – when he stated, “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.”
Robertson expresses his disagreement with the homosexual lifestyle and characterizes it as a sin. The Bible characterizes homosexuality not only as a sin but as an abomination punishable by death.
According to the Supreme Court, hate speech is permissible under the First Amendment unless it is likely to lead to imminent hate violence.
Since the Bible openly and aggressively advocates that homosexuals be put to death, it can easily be argued that such rhetoric is likely to lead to imminent hate-driven violence.
Indeed, there have been numerous cases around the world of pastors being arrested under hate speech laws for quoting Bible passages which relate to homosexuality.
Given that conclusion, the characterization of Robertson’s words as “hate speech” must automatically mean that the Bible – to an even greater degree – also represents “hate speech” and should immediately be withdrawn from 37 million Christian churches worldwide and treated in future only as a historical relic.