According to a CNN report published on Saturday, it is inevitable. Senior Media Correspondent Brian Stelter said the disagreement would likely soon resolve itself, due to the mutually beneficial business situation that has seen a 10 percent increase in A&E viewership attributable to the Duck Dynasty reality show this year.
"There's just nothing else on the channel that's nearly as popular as new episodes of 'Duck Dynasty,'" Stelter said. "It would be like AMC losing new episodes of 'The Walking Dead' or like Fox losing 'American Idol.' That's why it is very, very unlikely. The show is hugely important for the channel and for the family. Not just Phil, but the whole family."
In addition, contracts are in place, salaries were increased and Robertson's clan said they wouldn't continue the show without him.
For those folks who may have been visiting the nether-regions of mountain tops or deserted islands, here is what Robertson said in a GQ interview that got him in hot water:
“[We are Louisiana] Bible-thumpers who just happened to end up on television,” He then called homosexuality a sin and said, “It seems like, to me, a vagina — as a man — would be more desirable than a man’s anus. That’s just me. 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.” Asked by the reporter why it’s sinful, he replied: “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.”
Everyone jumped onto the Phil Robertson bandwagon: Love him, hate him or just don’t give a duck, he has been the topic at every dinner table and water cooler for days.
Conservatives like Sarah Palin and Ted Cruz (R-TX.) took to social media right away defending Robertson’s “freedom of speech”. Petitions were started demanding that A&E bring Robertson back to the show.
One petition has over 113,000 signatures and is still going strong. The website statement said (in part):
“Mr. Robertson’s comments in GQ Magazine are simply reflective of a Biblical view of sexuality, marriage, and family – a view that has stood the test of time for thousands of years and continues to be held by the majority of Americans and today’s world as a whole.”
But noteworthy, high profile characters disagreed with the Biblical excuse for Phil Robertson’s offensive remarks and think A&E would be better off without Duck Dynasty’s backwoods, so-called family values hypocritical rubbish.
Charlie Sheen, not a celebrity unfamiliar with controversy, absolutely smeared Robertson on Saturday in a meandering soliloquy on twitpic.com. Sheen referred to Robertson as the only living “brain donor” he ever knew and called him “mallard brained” and a “shower dodger”.
“The idea that you have a job outside of dirt-clod stacking is a miracle,” wrote Sheen and he said that Robertson should be ashamed of himself for comments that were "abhorrently and mendaciously unforgivable.”
In a much tamer statement, Fox's Bill O'Reilly was one of the few conservatives to denounce Phil Robertson's bigoted rant:
"It’s not about the Bible, or believing or not believing in the Bible,” O'Reilly explained on his show. “It’s singling out a group, could be any group, and saying to that group ‘Hey, you’re not worthy. You’re not worthy in the eyes of the Lord, or in the eyes of God, you’re not worthy because of who you are.'"
But money and ratings are anticipated to win out in the end, which will be one big score for propagating ignorance, exclusion and the marginalization of a huge segment of the world’s society, supposedly all in the name of God.
An anonymous source told Stelter that talks with Robertson will most likely begin after the holidays, but meanwhile they plan to begin reruns of the show on January 14th.