Nate Berkus Defends His Family with Uplifting Message After Derick Dillard's Homophobic Tweets
“My hope with having a show like #NandJByDesign on @TLC, where we go into people’s homes and welcome viewers into ours, is that we can start to break down barriers & normalize the way our family looks & the way our family loves,” Berkus, 46, tweeted alongside a photo of his husband Jeremiah Brent and their children.
Former Counting On star Dillard, who was fired from the TLC series, took to Twitter on Thursday when he responded to a tweet from the network promoting the reality series Nate & Jeremiah by Design.
The show follows Berkus and Brent, who are interior design experts and fathers — they share son Oskar, 1 month, and daughter Poppy, 3 — and teaches viewers “how to turn a money pit into a masterpiece. In each episode we learn from the mistakes of their clients as these designer husbands rescue them from renovation nightmares,” according to TLC.
“What a travesty of family,” Dillard tweeted in response to TLC’s tweet. “It’s sad how blatant the liberal agenda is, such that it both highlights and celebrates a lifestyle so degrading to children on public television as if it should be normal.”
When Twitter user @lisadcfckeates asked Dillard, “Do their lifestyles affect yours ? …. Errrrm No,”and “Plus this child looks mightily happy to me not “Poor” as you describe,” the father of two responded, “They affect this poor child, as well as what perversions are celebrated. If it were adultery, I doubt a network would be so quick to focus on the reality of it as if it were ok” and added “And that’s a good standard for well-being? …how they look?”
“So I guess we shouldn’t have judges in our court system? Should we not be allowed to challenge what’s best for the welfare of children, especially when their guardian chooses to be in the public eye and put a child in the public eye?” he responded to another user.
“I’m not bashing the people, I’m just calling out the public agenda at play and how a network chooses what they highlight,” he continued. “Christians should love all as Christ loved all. Take advantage of capitalism: boycott what you don’t believe in, but don’t boycott relationships.”
Asked what he would do “when one of your children grows up to be a member of the LGBTQ community??” Dillard responded, “We’d love them just the same.”
Dillard, who is married to Jill (Duggar) Dillard, with whom he shares two sons — Israel, 3, and Samuel, 9 months — also refuted a Twitter user’s claim that he “lived off TLC for years,” replying, “Not true, we’ve never lived off TLC.”
The Duggars, who are religiously conservative, have appeared on TLC since 2008.
This isn’t the first time that Dillard has taken aim at the network and the star of one of its series. Last summer, he called 17-year-old transgender activist Jazz Jennings’ reality show I Am Jazz (which is also on TLC) “an oxymoron” for being a “reality show which follows a non-reality” in August. At the time he also wrote on Twitter: ” ‘Transgender’ is a myth. Gender is not fluid; it’s ordained by God.”
Three months later, Dillard tweeted that he believed the transgender teen was being taken advantage of in order to promote an agenda, and that he pitied her.
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After writing on Twitter about how what America needs right now is unity, Dillard replied to a Twitter user who suggested that he came off as hateful.
“I pity Jazz 4 those who take advantage of him in order 2 promote their agenda, including the parents who allow these kinds of decisions 2 be made by a child. It’s sad that ppl would use a juvenile this way.” Dillard wrote, continuing to refer to Jennings by male pronounces — which he came under fire for back in August. “Again, nothing about him, just unfortunate what’s on tv these days.”
“I think it’s important to have a mature discussion,” Dillard added. “I am just expressing my concerns, as a Christian. The beauty of the world is that everybody is not like me.”
“Jazz is being taken advantage of, as part of a larger agenda. I really have nothing against the kid and wish him all the best in life. I just hate seeing him used this way,” he wrote.
Following his comments, TLC issued the following statement about Dillard: “We want to let our viewers know that Derick Dillard has not participated in Counting On for months and the network has no plans to feature him in the future. We want to reiterate that Derick’s personal statements do not reflect the views of the network. TLC is proud to share the story of Jazz Jennings and her family and will continue to do so.”
Nate & Jeremiah by Design airs Saturdays (9 p.m. ET) on TLC.