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Friday
Dec272013

Jesse Jackson: Phil Robertson 'More Offensive' than Rosa Parks' Bus Driver

Kris Connor/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Reverend Jesse Jackson has issued a strong response to Phil Robertson's controversial comments to GQ magazine.

In addition to expressing his opinion that homosexuality is a sin, the Duck Dynasty patriarch suggested to GQ that the African-Americans he saw in the pre-Civil Rights era were "happy" with the way they were treated.

In a statement dated Dec. 23 and obtained by ABC News, Jackson, along with his Rainbow PUSH Coalition and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, demanded to meet with A&E executives and Cracker Barrel’s CEO to discuss the future of all Duck Dynasty memorabilia or content.

Cracker Barrel sells Duck Dynasty-related products. The restaurant chain briefly pulled the items from its shelves after the GQ story was published, only to reverse course following backlash from customers.

Jackson said in the statement, “These statements uttered by Robertson are more offensive than the bus driver in Montgomery, Alabama, more than 59 years ago."

He continued, “At least the bus driver, who ordered Rosa Parks to surrender her seat to a white person, was following state law. Robertson’s statements were uttered freely and openly without cover of the law, within a context of what he seemed to believe was ‘white privilege.’”

The statement requested a meeting within 72 hours with A&E and Cracker Barrel execs, and urged the network to uphold Robertson’s suspension.

Meanwhile, the Louisiana-based Robertson is receiving the support of a state senator in Alabama.  State Senator Jerry Fielding will introduce a resolution to support the reality star during an upcoming legislative session, arguing that A&E “bowed to pressures from liberal groups rather than respecting Robertson’s biblically correct views,” according to Talladega's The Daily Home.

ABC is part owner of the A&E Network.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio