Phil Robertson, the bearded patriarch of the “Duck Dynasty” reality series, spoke about genital herpes, Jesus, Nazis and ISIS at the 2015 Conservative Political Action Conference on Friday. “I don’t want you, America, to get sick,” Robertson said to the conservative crowd, calling STDs "the revenge of the hippies.”
The professional hunter and TV star wore his famous headband, beard and long hair for his appearance on the second day of the CPAC conference, in National Harbor, Maryland. Robertson’s speech ran over his allotted 40 minutes as the 67-year-old spoke on a slew of topics including faith and sexually transmitted diseases. “Jesus is the only thing between you and herpes,” he said.
The “Duck Dynasty” star also pulled out his duct-taped family Bible on stage and offered advice to 2016 GOP presidential hopefuls. “Carry your Bible with you and your woman,” said Robertson, who spoke on the same stage as Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, among others.
Some of Robertson’s remarks drew applause from the audience, while others left only the sound of crickets. A&E suspended Robertson from “Duck Dynasty” after he said in a 2013 interview with GQ magazine that homosexual behavior is sinful. Robertson is the creator of the multimillion-dollar duck-call empire Duck Commander.
Robertson appeared at the CPAC to accept the annual Citizens United “Andrew Breitbart Defender of the First Amendment Award.” Robertson is the second recipient of the free speech award. “Phil has the guts to do and say what most politicians in Washington won’t,” said Stephen Bannon, Breitbart News Network executive chairman, last week.
In an interview with Fox News this week, Robertson discussed how the United States should deal with the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria, also known as ISIS or ISIL. “What to do with ISIS? Convert them or kill them. I’m ready either way,” he told host Sean Hannity Tuesday, adding that ISIS is like “street gangs, street thugs on steroids.
People responded to Robertson’s CPAC speech on social media Friday, posting their reactions on Twitter:
Serious question: Has anyone seen a transcript of that Phil Robertson speech?
— Chris Cillizza (@TheFix) February 27, 2015
I think we may have all caught an STD just sitting here listening to Phil Robertson warning us about STD's for the last 30 minutes. #SafeSex
— Ana Navarro (@ananavarro) February 27, 2015
The Phil Robertson speech at #cpac2015 was a llama chase for political junkies. Did it have to end so soon?
— Anthony Zurcher (@awzurcher) February 27, 2015
— Rob Flaherty (@Rob_Flaherty) February 27, 2015