Candace Cameron Bure won’t say the quiet part out loud, so Hilarie Burton is doing it for her. Following her departure from Hallmark for the Great American Family channel, Bure told the Wall Street Journal that the decision was driven by the network wanting “to promote faith programming and good family entertainment.” In response, Burton spotlighted the thinly-veiled bigotry at play, writing on Twitter: “Bigot. I don’t remember Jesus liking hypocrites like Candy. But sure. Make your money, honey. You ride that prejudice wave all the way to the bank.”
Bure exited Hallmark after over a decade to follow former Crown Media Family Networks CEO Bill Abbott – and current Great American Media CEO – to GAC Family after the network ran, pulled, and reinstated a commercial depicting a same-sex wedding. She told WSJ that her “heart wants to tell stories that have more meaning and purpose and depth behind them,” but the films she’ll be making with GAC don’t have more purpose, or depth, than Hallmark conveyor belt of holiday movies, they just have less gay people.
“It basically is a completely different network than when I started because of the change of leadership,” Bure said, adding: “I knew that the people behind Great American Family were Christians that love the Lord and wanted to promote faith programming and good family entertainment.”
Abbott, in support, stated that “spiritual or faith-based content is grossly underserved” and that he is “aware of the trends.”
“Now they’re just openly admitting their bigotry,” Burton tweeted. “I called this shit out years ago when Abbott was at Hallmark. Glad they dumped him. Being LGBTQ isn’t a ‘trend.’ That guy and his network are disgusting. You too Candy. There is nothing untraditional about same-sex couples.”
JoJo Siwa, who has identified as queer since January 2021 and had a public feud with Bure over the summer, is also speaking out against Bure’s actions. Siwa took to Instagram to voice her thoughts, writing, “I can’t believe after everything that went down just a few months ago, that she would not only create a movie with intention of excluding LGBTQIA+, but then also talk about it in the press. This is rude and hurtful to a whole community of people.”
And now, the LGBTQ+ organization GLAAD has released a statement.
GLAAD’s President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said: “It’s irresponsible and hurtful for Candace Cameron Bure to use tradition as a guise for exclusion. I’d love to have a conversation with Bure about my wife, our kids, and our family’s traditions. Bure is out of sync with a growing majority of people of faith, including LGBTQ people of faith, who know that LGBTQ couples and families are deserving of love and visibility. As the company’s Chief Creative Officer, her statement is harmful and insulting to LGBTQ employees, as well as employees with LGBTQ friends and family. If GAC Family’s plan is to intentionally exclude stories about LGBTQ couples, then actors, advertisers, cable and streaming platforms, and production companies should take note and seriously consider whether they want to be associated with a network that holds exclusion as one of its values.”
Bure took to Instagram in 2017 to clarify that she isn’t homophobic and is “always sad when people think otherwise,” though the undertones of her statements often point in the other direction. “Loving Jesus doesn’t mean I hate gay people or anyone,” she wrote at the time — but it does mean she’ll abandon an entire network to champion another that does, however quietly, suppress the validity of queer love stories.
This story was updated on 11/16 at 10:40 am ET with GLAAD’s statement.