Everybody’s got an opinion on Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson, who was suspended from his hit A&E show after making ardently anti-gay comments in a recent GQ interview — including singer Clay Aiken, who famously came out in 2008. And thanks to an appearance on Thursday’s Arsenio, Aiken had a chance to air his Robertson thoughts on national TV.
“Homophobia, all of it’s built out of fear,” the American Idol runner-up told his old Celebrity Apprentice pal Arsenio Hall. “If the person had said something about interracial marriage, or said ‘we need to put all children with disabilities in institutions,’ would we still be saying, ‘well, that’s free speech, we’re okay with that opinion’? And I think the answer is ‘no.'”
(For the record, Robertson did make racist comments in his interview as well, saying that while growing up in pre-Civil-Rights-era Louisiana, “I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once… They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’ — not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”)