Twin Bros React to HGTV Canceling Show Over Anti-Gay Views
The twin brothers whose show was canceled by Home & Garden TV hours after it was reported that at least one of the brothers had a history of making anti-gay comments, responded to the news in a statement Thursday.
David Benham and Jason Beham's show "Flip it Forward," which was scheduled to air in October, was nixed soon after Right Wing Watch reported on the anti-gay, anti-Muslim and anti-abortion history of David Benham and the twins' father, Flip Benham.
The brothers are now reacting to the news in a statement posted to their website, saying they are "saddened" by HGTV's decision:
The first and last thought on our minds as we begin and end each day is; have we shined Christ's light today? Our faith is the fundamental calling in our lives, and the centerpiece of who we are. As Christians we are called to love our fellow man. Anyone who suggests that we hate homosexuals or people of other faiths is either misinformed or lying.
Over the last decade, we've sold thousands of homes with the guiding principle of producing value and breathing life into each family that has crossed our path, and we do not, nor will we ever discriminate against people who do not share our views.
We were saddened to hear HGTV's decision. With all of the grotesque things that can be seen and heard on television today you would think there would be room for two twin brothers who are faithful to our families, committed to biblical principles, and dedicated professionals. If our faith costs us a television show then so be it.
Though the Benham brothers deny anti-gay views, Right Wing Watch detailed David Benham’s activities, including leading a prayer rally outside the Democratic Nation Convention in Charlotte, N.C, in 2012 and telling a conservative radio host that he needed to stop "homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation" and "Demonic ideologies take our universities and our public school systems."
Not long after RWW’s report, HGTV posted on Facebook and tweeted: "HGTV has decided not to move forward with the Benham Brothers’ series."
According to David Benham’s Twitter, he is a father of five "Serial Entrepreneur, Crossfitter, Evil Twin, Jesus Guy. HGTV host." Jason Benham’s Twitter says he is a father of four. Both accounts say they reside in Charlotte, N.C.
According to HGTV, "Flip it Forward" would have centered around the brothers, who would help families buy homes to flip and "transformer it into their forever home - with a healthy dose of sibling rivalry between the brothers along the way."
Since the show was canceled, many have reacted to the announcement. LGBT activist and writer Dan Savage wrote in his paper the Stranger and said:
The real story here is that we are rapidly approaching the tipping point that I’ve been talking and writing about for years. Once upon a time white people used to be able to go on TV and say the most racist shit imaginable (argue against legal interracial marriage, argue in favor of segregation) and keep their jobsand be invited back on TV to say that shit a second time. Then one day you couldn’t say that shit (not on TV, at least) and keep your job and be invited back to say that shit again. Opinions that used to be considered ’respectable’ were suddenly toxic career enders. We are rapidly reaching the same tipping point on LGBT issues. You can believe whatever you want, but you have to be careful when and how you express your anti-gay animus. Because it could cost you. As David and Jason Benham just learned.
On the other side of the spectrum, the anti-gay Christian group Faith Driven Consumer launched a petition campaign, calling for HGTV to bring back "Flip it Forward."
"Following the sudden cancellation of the upcoming HGTV series ’Flip It Forward’ simply because the stars of the show, brothers David and Jason Benham, hold a biblical worldview on the issues of life and marriage, Faith Driven Consumer is announcing a brand new grassroots campaign called #FlipThisDecision to return the show to the network’s fall lineup," the press release reads in part.
JoeMyGod notes Faith Driven Consumer is endorsed by the American Family Association and Focus On The Family.
Apparently, the apples didn’t fall far from the tree. Check out a 2009 video interview with their father Flip.