The revelation that One Direction's Liam Payne is a big fan of the U.S. reality series Duck Dynasty has stirred up a Twitter feud rivaling the Hatfields and the McCoys.
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that One Direction fans and gay-rights supporters are fuming over a tweet from band member Payne in which he praised the "family values" of the U.S. reality series Duck Dynasty.
Several weeks ago, Duck Dynasty mainstay Phil Robertson stirred up a firestorm by telling a reporter from GQ magazine that "homosexual behaviour" was sinful and not that far removed from bestiality.
The cable channel A&E, which airs Duck Dynasty in the U.S. and syndicates the show worldwide, briefly suspended Robertson from the show for his inflammatory comments but then quickly reinstated him.
And just when we all thought the ruckus had died down, rakish Payne started it up al over again, which began with the singer sending a tweet to Robertson's son, Willie, with a gushing compliment.
Payne's tweet: "Huge love to you/your family huge respect for your business prosperities and the family values you still all behold. Big fan."
Not surprisingly, the unsolicited sign of support threw One Direction fans for a loop. Within hours, YouTube personality and gay-rights advocate Tyler Oakley responded to his 1.84-million Twitter followers with the comment: "Wow. Very confused and disappointed by this @Real-Liam-Payne tweet. This literally changes everything."
Payne, meanwhile, waded back into the fray and defended his original tweet, which he claimed was taken out of context by most journalists and bloggers, as he pointed out in the hashtag #lazyjournos, which immediately began trending.
Payne's followup tweet: "Being a fan of someone's show and the way they still hold a family together doesn't mean I am ok with all they say."
Never one to miss an promotional opportunity, Willie Robertson then jumped into the Twitter feud and thanked Payne for his unwavering support with the tweet: "Congrats to u boys as well. Y'all keep rockin, we'll keep quackin. Stay strong in this nutty world.
And what about Oakley? The gay-rights activist says he's received death threats from One Direction fans following his decision to weigh in on the imbroglio.
Yesterday, the clearly chastised Oakley tweeted that he was "taking a break from the Internet for a minute" and that he "misinterpreted a comment & stood up for something I believe in – which in no way altars [sic] my love of the music, by the way."