Phil Robertson, the family patriarch of A&E’s popular reality show, Duck Dynasty, will be receiving the “Citizens United/Breitbart.com” award for free speech later this month. This is the second year the award has been handed out.
Called the “Andrew Breitbart Defender of the First Amendment Award,” it will be given to Phil Robertson at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) to be held in National Harbor, Maryland, February 25-28, 2015.
Phil is the founder of Duck Commander, a Duck call manufacturer, on which the Duck Dynasty show is based.
In an interview with CQ Magazine in December 2013, Phil called homosexuality a sin ruffling the feathers of the ‘Political Correctness’ crowd who immediately demanded A&E pull Robertson from the show. In the interview, Phil said “We just love ’em, give ’em the good news about Jesus — whether they’re homosexuals, drunks, terrorists…”
Though A&E initially suspended Phil, in a matter of weeks a massive public backlash against the network’s decision forced A&E to allow Phil’s return.
Through the controversy, Phil refused to back down on his beliefs. While agreeing to accept the award, the Duck Dynasty star said:
“When one does not have the freedom to speak out loud and anywhere what one believes, freedom is dead.”
In his announcement on this year’s recipient, Citizens United President David Bossie stated:
“A large part of Andrew Breitbart’s vision was that conservatives would take back modern pop culture, and the Robertson family have become some of the most popular and beloved media personalities today, while keeping God at the center of their family, business and their hit television show.”
Speaking on behalf of Breitbart.com, Stephen Bannon added:
“Phil has the guts to do and say what most politicians in Washington won’t: You must adhere to your conservative beliefs, all of them, and never surrender or compromise them for anyone.”
The free speech award was first handed out in 2014 to conservative radio talk show host Mark Levin.