NASHVILLE (BP) -- In an unusual win for social conservatives, a man reprimanded for expressing biblical views in a magazine interview has been reinstated in his role atop one of television's most popular shows.
After culture commentators and citizens of seemingly every stripe weighed in on "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson's controversial remarks, A&E announced it will resume filming the reality show with the entire family.
"While Phil's comments made in the interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs, and his own
|"You told us we made a mistake. And, you weren't shy about it. You wrote, you called and you took to social media to express your thoughts and feelings." |
--Cracker Barrel, reversing course on removing some "Duck Dynasty" products from its stores
personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the 'coarse language' he used and the mis-interpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article," A&E said in a statement Dec. 27 regarding an interview of Robertson in GQ magazine. "He also made it clear he would 'never incite or encourage hate.'"
A&E expressed disappointment with Robertson's statements and reiterated they do not share his views, "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. These are three values that we at A+E Networks also feel strongly about," the statement said.
A&E consulted with the Robertson family and "numerous advocacy groups" before deciding to let Robertson back on the show.
"We will also use this moment to launch a national public service campaign (PSA) promoting unity, tolerance and acceptance among all people, a message that supports our core values as a company, and the values found in Duck Dynasty. These PSAs will air across our entire portfolio," A&E said.
Just 10 days earlier, A&E said it had placed Robertson "under hiatus from filming indefinitely" after the network learned of his comments describing homosexual behavior as sinful in the GQ article. In that announcement, A&E said its networks have always been "strong supporters and champions of the LBGT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender] community." Read More