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A&E Has Ended Phil Robertson’s ‘Hiatus’ from ‘Duck Dynasty’ after Just 9 Days

Well that didn’t last long. Over the weekend, cable network A&E announced that it was reinstating Duck Dynasty family patriarch Phil Robertson on the hit reality show. The “indefinite hiatus” A&E placed Robertson on following controversial comments he made about homosexuality and race lasted all of nine days. Those nine days also happen to be during a period when the show isn’t even in production. The move followed a massive public outcry from fans and a statement from fellow cast members saying that they couldn’t imagine doing the show without Phil. In a statement to The Hollywood Reporter, A&E explained the reinstatement, saying, “While Phil’s comments made in the interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs and his own personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the “coarse language” he used and the misinterpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article … But Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man’s views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family … a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness.” (You can read the full statement here.) We probably haven’t heard the last from Phil Robertson and his penchant for speaking his mind: Over the weekend, a video of a speech he gave in 2009 surfaced, in which he suggested that girls should get married when they’re 15 or 16 years old.

The network said that they would “launch a national public service campaign (PSA) promoting unity, tolerance and acceptance among all people.” It’s unclear yet if any members of the Robertson family will participate in the PSAs. The LGBT advocacy organization GLAAD—one of the groups that initially complained about Phil’s comments—released their own statement saying that “if dialogue with Phil is not part of next steps then A&E has chosen profits over African American and gay people–especially its employees and viewers.” In yet another statement, Phil’s son Alan thanked fans, “We will continue to represent our faith and values in the most positive way through Duck Dynasty and our many projects that we are currently working on. The outpouring of support and prayer has encouraged and emboldened us greatly” …

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