American Dispatch, by Todd Starnes

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Rolling Stone Blasts 'Duck Dynasty' — Calls Them 'Christian-Right Hillbillies'

Willie Robertson, star of the television show "Duck Dynasty," speaks at the Republican National Convention
Willie Robertson, star of the television show "Duck Dynasty," speaks at the Republican National Convention. (REUTERS/Mike Segar)

Duck Dynasty was a modern-day version of Mayberry—a television show that celebrated faith and family and ducks. And now the show has ended—the duck blind is closed.

It was back in 2012 that A&E introduced the nation to the owners of Duck Commander—the Robertson Family, of West Monroe, Louisiana.

It was only a matter of time before Phil and Miss Kay and Uncle Si and Willie became some of the most popular stars in reality television show history. Among all of us gun-toting, Bible-clinging deplorables—the Robertsons were beloved.

Each week, they welcomed us into their homes and business for heaping helpings of fried frog legs, jugs of sweet tea and a healthy dose of homespun humor.

The Robertsons never shied away from their devout Christian beliefs—and I deeply respected that decision.

One of the most poignant moments in each episode happened around the dinner table as the family held hands and prayed.

That beautiful moment of Christian fellowship was once considered controversial by A&E staffers, according to Phil.

"So they would just have me saying, 'Thank you Lord for the food, thank you for loving us, amen," he told Sports Spectrum in 2013. "So I said, 'Why would you cut out 'In Jesus' name?' They said, 'Well those editors are probably doing that. They just think that they don't want to offend some of the Muslims or something.'"

It's no surprise that liberals, Hollywood and the mainstream media detested the gun-toting, Bible-clinging duck-callers.

Rolling Stone published a profane farewell to the television show titled, "Fowl Play: Saying Goodbye to 'Duck Dynasty,' TV's Worst Show."

"No show in television history has ever [inappropriate expression] quite like this one," they wrote. "And if the TV gods are willing, no show ever will."

Apparently the editors at Rolling Stone haven't watched Vanderpump Rules or anything featuring the Kardashians.

The take-down was particularly brutal—calling the Robertson's a "family of hypocritical Christian-right hillbillies."

"The show represented the pre-Trump Christian right's fantasy of itself—a family of hairy but God-fearing bootstrappers bowing their heads in prayer over the dinner table," the writer added.

It sounds to me like somebody's skinny jeans are a bit too tight.

The mean-spirited magazine went on to accuse our favorite duck hunters of being phonies: "{Obscenity), even their beards looked fake."

Those are fighting words, right there. Just because you're a latte-sipping liberal doesn't mean you have to be downright rude. 

In truth, the Robertson's are good people, Christian people who spoke truth to a very intolerant culture.

I had the pleasure and honor of getting to meet Phil and Miss Kay and Al and Willie on a number of occasions. And they were just as genuine in person as they were on the television show.

Just a few weeks ago I spoke at Liberty University and had the chance to visit with Luke Robertson, the young and beardless member of the family. It only took a few minutes to understand this young man was raised by godly parents. 

I reckon that's why we loved Duck Dynasty—they made television family-friendly again. That's a fact, Jack (as Uncle Si might say).

So I believe it is only fitting to end this column the way the Robertson's ended their television program—with a prayer.

Lord, we thank you for the Robertson family of West Monroe. We thank you for their faithfulness and their Christian witness. We thank you for sustaining them through the attacks of the evil ones. And we ask your blessings on the entire family as they begin a new journey. May they be happy, happy, happy. In Jesus' name, amen.

Todd Starnes is host of "Fox News & Commentary," heard on hundreds of radio stations. Sign up for his American Dispatch newsletter, be sure to join his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter. His latest book is The Deplorables' Guide to Making America Great Again.

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