GLAAD has reacted to A&E's decision to lift the ban on "Duck Dynasty" star Phil Robertson. After the network reversed its decision to suspend the reality TV star from the hit show, the advocacy group issued a statement to express its disappointment.
"Phil Robertson should look African American and gay people in the eyes and hear about the hurtful impact of praising Jim Crow laws and comparing gay people to terrorists," the organization stated. "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."
A&E placed Robertson on indefinite hiatus earlier this month following his anti-gay comments in an interview with GQ. He said, "Everything is blurred on what's right and what's wrong... Sin becomes fine. Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there. Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men."
While gay right activists blasted the Robertson patriarch, fans launched a petition to reinstate him. A&E finally lifted the suspension on December 27, arguing that Robertson had "made it clear he would 'never incite or encourage hate.' "
Production of the fifth season is expected to resume "later this spring with the entire Robertson family."