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A&E relents, drops suspension of Phil Robertson from 'Duck Dynasty'

After being suspended from A&E's reality show "Duck Dynasty" after making anti-gay statements in a magazine interview, Phil Robertson is returning, the cable network announced Friday.

Phil Robertson of 'Duck Dynasty' :: a&e networks
Phil Robertson of 'Duck Dynasty' 
credit :: a&e networks
Robertson was suspended from the show last week after making explicit comments about gay sex in an interview with GQ magazine.

"It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man's anus, that's just me," the 67-year-old Robertson said. "I'm just thinking: There's more there! She's got more to offer. I mean, come on, dudes! You know what I'm saying? But hey, sin: It's not logical, my man. It's just not logical."

"Start with homosexual behavior and just morph out from there," Robertson continued. "Bestiality, sleeping around with this woman and that woman and that woman and those men."

Robertson, who is a fundamentalist preacher, also made controversial comments about race relations in the Deep South when he was growing up.

A&E Networks suspended Robertson from "Duck Dynasty" shorty after the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) issued a response.

Sarah Palin and a number of Christian conservatives rushed to Robertson's defense. 

"Free speech is an endangered species," Palin posted on Facebook. "Those 'intolerants' hatin' and taking on the Duck Dynasty patriarch for voicing his personal opinion are taking on all of us."

A&E reinstated Robertson on Friday and that he has publicly said he would "never incite or encourage hate."

The "Duck Dynasty" series reported produced almost $80 million of ad revenue for A&E this year. The cable network is jointly owned by Hearst Corp. and Walt Disney Co., which is the parent company of ABC.

Related: What the Duck? An op-ed by Bishop Carlton Pearson
 
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