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Paula Deen's deposition


Details of a deposition in which Paula Deen made some rather startling admissions about racial jokes amongst other things.


  1. "According to the Enquirer, in the deposition, Deen replied “Yes, of course,” when asked if she used the n-word.

    Deen also reportedly admitted telling racist jokes, explaining: “It’s just what they are — they’re jokes…most jokes are about Jewish people, rednecks, black folks…I can’t determine what offends another person.”"

    What a pig that woman is ...

    2 Replies
    1. re: C. Hamster

      "most jokes are about Jewish people, rednecks, black folks"

      "Most" jokes? No. "Many" jokes? Yes. I will come right out and say that among my friends and family, I have repeated jokes I have heard about these minority groups. I have not done it with coworkers or in "mixed" company, though.

      1. re: C. Hamster

        Yet calling her a "pig" is acceptable...hmmmm

      2. I think Paula Deen is just a product of her time. If true, do I hold it against her? No. And I'm not a big PD fan.

        26 Replies
          1. re: hyacinthgirl

            "She's not 150."

            No she isn't, but a 66 year old person who grew up in the south when she did would have been around adults who probably told these types of jokes and to her they were just part and parcel of the type of humor around her.

              1. re: ttoommyy

                Maybe, I don't know. My in-laws are all from the deep south and in their 60's and they've never joked like that in front of me. That's just my experience, but I'm a 30-something yankee.

                1. re: ttoommyy

                  That was then. This is now. You hope to learn from history and NOT repeat it. She obviously is dumb as a post and hasn't learned shit.

                  1. re: ttoommyy

                    What ttoommyy said.

                    I'm Asian and primarily date Caucasians. Several were from the south (Texas, Georgia, Wisconsin, off the top of my head) and used similar language. These guys were ages 23-33...

                    1. re: ttoommyy

                      This is very true. But you would think that she would learn by now that it's not acceptable under any circumstances. It's amazing - people love this woman. Wonder what food network will do.

                      1. re: wincountrygirl

                        I hope they will get rid of her but I doubt they will.

                        I don't recall who said this but if she wants to use language like that she needs to limit it to home use. But she's in a position of power and I'm sure has gotten away with it for so long that she feels she can do and say whatever she wants.

                        She's recently revamped her cooking approach, she can now use some education regarding race relations, decency, respect.. And bubba? I'm not sure what can be done about that one.

                        1. re: youareabunny

                          Her power comes from the public, if they continue to support her, maybe food network will keep her, but then we have a far more serious problem. I just can't believe that we will continue to support this person.

                          1. re: dolly52

                            This did make breaking news so I hope that people wise up.

                            1. re: dolly52

                              I believe like many a "fallen" public personality she'll be dropped/less visible for a while, do some image rehab and then come back.

                              1. re: cresyd

                                True. Her next special will be a fundraiser for a black charity.

                        2. re: ttoommyy

                          I am a forty year old Southerner and I hear these types of jokes or people using that word all the time... It is not uncommon among natives.

                      2. re: miss_belle

                        I'm 64, so I grew up at the same time as Paula Deen, with some of those years spent in the Deep South. If I had ever used the n-word or made a racist joke in my father's hearing, he'd have nailed my hide to the wall. Anyone who claims that using that word or telling racist jokes is socially acceptable behavior is clueless. (Unless your social circle consists entirely of low-life bigots.)

                        1. re: pikawicca

                          Exactly, Pikawicca. I'm 50, my parents are 75 and both from the deep south. I would have had my mouth washed out with soap (literally--I can tell you what Dial tastes like after calling one of my brothers an a-hole) for using a racist or other bad word.

                          1. re: pikawicca

                            Same here. I'm 46, and I have an older sister the same age as Deen. My mother is from Mississippi, is 88, and I have never, ever heard her use the N word or tell a racist joke, And it never would have been acceptable for me or my siblings to do so. I have lived most of my life in the South, and I can say that Deen's behavior is not socially acceptable in my generation, hers, or my mother's.

                            Low-life bigots, as Pika so aptly calls them, exist everywhere. I have run across them in the North, and in other countries. Deen's comments are reprentative of low-life bigotry, not Southerness.

                            1. re: MelMM

                              Thank you. I was born and raised in NC but now live in Philadelphia and I've heard more racist nonsense in the 10 years I've been up here than I can remember hearing in the first 25 years of my life in the South.
                              My first generation Irish-American grandfather lived his entire life in upstate NY and had slurs for everyone who wasn't Irish.
                              Then there's Europe - black soccer players are regularly taunted with bananas and ape grunts and other nonsense.
                              Don't make this about the south, there are jerks everywhere.

                              1. re: caganer

                                Individual racist acts are everywhere, sure, but the south tends to have institutions in place that foster these sentiments. Eg. Segregated Georgia prom.

                                1. re: youareabunny

                                  one example does not equal a regional tendency

                              2. re: MelMM

                                Same here. Born and raised in the South, in a family that has always been in the South (since 1660). No one in my family would ever use the kind of language Paula Deen has admitted to using. I certainly have relatives who are less-than-enlightened when it comes to racial and ethnic differences, but they still know well enough not to use certain words or make certain jokes outside the privacy of their homes and company of like minded people. It's hard enough to get stuff done in a rural community, nobody can afford to build a reputation as a bigot because no one else would do business with them.

                            2. re: miss_belle

                              Sure, if I heard her say the "n"-word as a 6 year old girl in the 50s, I might accept that that's just how everyone around her talked, how could she know any better. As a 66 year old woman in 2013, not so much.

                              One responsibility of adulthood is recognizing and reflecting on behaviors that we may have inherited from our upbringing and deciding if that's who we really want to be. PD must have noticed at some point since her childhood that the "n"-word has become the most offensive and taboo word in American English. If she still continues to use it, it's not simply because she is a product of her time, but because she has consciously decided that she's OK with that. In fact, she seems downright proud of it.

                              Do I hold it against her? Absolutely.

                              ETA: The Enquirer and the NYP seem to have exaggerated PD's "startling admissions"…

                              1. re: miss_belle

                                Paula Deen is the same age I am, meaning she's part of the generation that turned its back on this sort of thing. Most of us did, anyway. I wouldn't cut her any slack for being a southerner. Even the South has changed, and Deen can choose to be part of the New South or the Old South.

                                1. re: GH1618

                                  That was my thought. She was twenty years old in 1967. Which side was she on?

                                2. re: miss_belle

                                  My late grandmother was a product of her time. She didn't like black people (except the ones she knew personally -- they were friends). She didn't understand why people got so bent out of shape over the N word.

                                  She was in most respects a lovely woman, and in spite of that I loved her dearly. But she was in no way fit to be a corporate employer with those attitudes. Deen's "boys will be boys" attitude towards this whole thing shows that she's not fit to be an employer. She needs to put all hiring and employment decisions in the hands of a capable HR company, stat.

                                  1. re: JonParker

                                    That's the most important part.

                                    It's one thing if it's a case of "gee, Grandma might say some racists things - but she's older and at this piont there's just no changing her", when bringing a new partner/friend over to dinner.

                                    It's another thing to be a corporate employer. That's where the real problem lies. She's a corporate employer. If she wants to go home and use all sorts of offensive, prejudiced language - fair enough. But having a "family business" mentality does not mean you can get away with behaving exactly as you would do at home.

                                    1. re: JonParker

                                      I suspect that your grandmother was of a generation before Paula Deen's.

                                      This is absolutely unacceptable for a public figure who was young during the civil rights struggles.

                                  2. Wow. What can you say? I blame Gordon Elliot for "discovering" this vile woman and creating her fame..

                                    And ttoommy, I feel sorry for your "friends and family."

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: jennyfur

                                      "And ttoommy, I feel sorry for your "friends and family.""

                                      No need to, as they have also repeated such jokes. Sorry, it's a fact of life for me. I'm not saying I go around telling them left and right; but if I hear a funny one and I know the group is intelligent enough to go beyond the supposed
                                      "hatred" behind the joke and see it for what it is, then so be it. I have heard hundreds of "gay" jokes said aloud and in "mixed" company. I'm not offended (and I'm gay). Many great comedians have made their careers on racist jokes. Just depends on the way one looks at the world and how serious one takes such jokes. I'm not saying it's for everyone. I'm just saying that I am not above it.

                                      1. re: ttoommyy

                                        IMO some of these people should take some time out of their day and visit a military barracks.

                                        They would be shocked to hear Black, Latino, White, Indian, and Asian enlisted Soldiers and Marines openly laughing at each other about who cracked the best racial, ethnic, national, religious, gender, sexual, personal, and familial slurs and jokes.

                                        1. re: deet13

                                          Deet, there is a reason military humour is tough and often crude. That doesn't make it acceptable in civilian life.

                                    2. I'm sure I've retold some "you might be a redneck if..." jokes in my time. At least she admits to it.

                                      1. Is anyone actually shocked or even surprised?

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: mcf

                                          More importantly......does ANYONE really care??????

                                          Better things to worry about..or discuss here folks

                                          1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                            That's what I'm talking about..not a big deal.

                                            1. re: miss_belle

                                              To you, perhaps. Are you in one of those groups mentioned who've been harmed by those with the tradition of using those terms?

                                            2. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                              I guess I disagree that we should be blase and "oh, so what" about such a disgusting aspect of our history any time it comes up.

                                              And putting this in context, the racism is alleged to be part and parcel of employment by PD.

                                              Not ok.

                                          2. To those who tell jokes based on race, religion, sexual orientation....

                                            And yes, at times they can be funny...

                                            But do you also call black people "n***ers," Jews "kikes" and gay men "faggots" as your regular accepted form of speech?

                                            I think a joke about race takes on a special hateful dynamic when told by a white woman with the N Word in their common vocabulary.

                                            33 Replies
                                            1. re: C. Hamster

                                              And a blase, "most jokes are..." as explanation.

                                              1. re: C. Hamster

                                                And yet blacks can throw the words n*****s & ho's around all day long and the black community in general has no problem with it.

                                                I knew I shouldn't have joined this conversation.

                                                1. re: miss_belle

                                                  You don't see the difference between you or Paula using it and folks in that ethnic group using it themselves?

                                                  And who says the black community in general has no problem with it? You're so dead wrong about that, but even those who don't want to hear it from black folks either will say the sting of it from white folks is worse.

                                                  I don't think you're in a position to judge how descendants of slaves should feel about Paula Deen's swoon over middle aged black men dressed as slaves in a civil war era style restaurant.

                                                  1. re: mcf

                                                    I always love that "Descendant of slaves" comment.....why that is synonymous with being black is beyond me

                                                    1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                      Probably because most Black people in the US, the Caribbean and Brazil are. Barak, no, because his dad was East African. Michelle, yes.

                                                      1. re: FriedClamFanatic

                                                        Because it has been my experience that Islander Black people do not like being grouped in with "Descendant of slave" black people.

                                                        Not trying to take sides, nor express a personal opinion, however it seems with in the black community there are two kinds of black people. Those who are descendant's of the slave era, and those who have immigrated or migrated here since. The majority who have come since are from various area's other than the African Continent.

                                                        It seems the descendant of slaves section of the community are those who feel they are owed something by our government and society for the sins against their ancestors.

                                                        The other side of the community want nothing to do with that and just want to be given the opportunity to work, succeed and pursue their version of the American Dream.

                                                        My apologies if any of my statements have offended anyone.

                                                        1. re: jrvedivici

                                                          "It seems the descendant of slaves section of the community are those who feel they are owed something by our government and society for the sins against their ancestors."

                                                          I think that's the least comprehending distinction one could possibly make. It's more like one's attitudes, beliefs and expectations are formed at least in part by one's personal and one's family history.

                                                          I think that those who are descended from slaves are those we focus on (with varying degress of empathy) when loaded terms that recall searingly ugly history for them are casually tossed around and still accepted.

                                                          I think the recent racist uproar over a Cheerios commercial featuring a bi racial child and her parents demonstrates how that experience isn't all history when it comes to the gauntlet of attitudes such folks still face, despite all the noise about how "post racial" we are.

                                                          1. re: mcf

                                                            Bringing up the Cheerios commercial reminds me of another commercial that was controversial and pulled recently. I actually started a thread about this but it was pulled by the Mods.

                                                            It was the recent Mountain Dew commercial which some were calling the most "racist" commercial to ever air, or be made.

                                                            What I found completely mind boggling was the fact that the commercial was written and produced by a black male. (name currently escapes me) So just like the use of the "N" word is accepted within that community, I wondered, how could the most racist commercial ever made, be made by a person of the race it's supposed to be racist against!?!?

                                                            1. re: jrvedivici

                                                              I remember that. It was very edgy and inappropriate, even if not outright racist.

                                                              The use of the word is accepted by "some" not all or even most in "that community."

                                                          2. re: jrvedivici

                                                            They certainly didn't offend me; I thought they were thoughtful. One of my grandfathers was a racially-mixed man (about Obama colour, by the photos) from a Caribbean island nation, but Africans were taken there as slaves as well. I don't live in the US, and while there is certainly racism in Canada as everywhere in the world (the worst here is against Aboriginal Canadians), the black - white divide is not central to the historical narrative as it is south of the border. Many slaves fled to freedom up here, that does not mean they achieved equality.

                                                            I'm not very much younger than Paula Deen, and was always sternly taught not to make racial or ethnic jokes. A friend from Alabama who is exactly the same age as Deen was taught the same.

                                                        2. re: mcf

                                                          Sorry MCF..........no double standards here.......prominent black comedians have have made a lot of money telling derogatory jokes about blacks and then followed up with derogatory jokes about whites. The same is true of Jewish comedians and just about every other group out there.

                                                          Do I think less of her after reading the deposition? No. Depositions are one sided with very short answers and little in the way of explanations.

                                                          Am I surprised by the content of her deposition? Yes.
                                                          Why, because Hollywood, largely left leaning, has long portrayed itself to be morally superior to the populace. Fact is they are the largest group of hypocrites out there.

                                                          1. re: Tom34

                                                            I would say the real problem is in thinking that you can equate a joke told by a comedian with the actions and language of your employer in a supposedly professional environment. I can't even begin to follow that reasoning.

                                                            Also, please don't try to make this a right vs. left thing. I know there are a lot of people who automatically apply that filter to any issue, but it's not appropriate here. It's not right vs. left, it's right vs. wrong.

                                                            1. re: JonParker

                                                              Exactly. Comedians make money by filling seats. The audience chooses to be there.

                                                              PD's employees withstood the treatment because at the end of the day it was still a paycheck.

                                                            2. re: Tom34

                                                              You're totally off topic here and I don't care what kind of entertainment you like or don't.

                                                              This is a case about hostile work environment; it's employment law, not Comedy Central.

                                                              1. re: Tom34

                                                                I am referring to telling jokes in general and historically the work place is probably the number one place for telling jokes.

                                                                Having said that, as an employer it is very foolish to say the least to engage in or tolerate behavior that the courts have held create a hostile work environment. Whether she is found guilty of doing so is a legal matter that will be placed in the hands of a jury to decide.

                                                                "Right vs wrong".... Fortunately, as each generation has passed, an increasing number of people find it morally wrong to engage in such behavior.

                                                                IMHO, being a member of a particular group in no way relinquishes the moral responsibility to refrain from making derogatory comments about one's own group. To retain credibility, leaders & spokesmen of said groups should speak out just as often and just as loud when members of their own group engage in such behavior.

                                                                "Right vs Left".....Campaign finance laws paint a pretty clear picture which political party Hollywood supports and I find it quite hypocritical that Hollywood, for the sake of profit, condones the very behavior the political party they support has spent decades trying to end. In effect, practice what you preach.

                                                                1. re: Tom34

                                                                  You always go there, but this not "right vs left."

                                                                  You don't get to decide how someone else should feel about their experience of racial language and from whose mouths it bothers them; they do.

                                                                  The whole "pull your pants up" campaign cry came from the black community, btw.

                                                                  There's not some monolithic Bureau of Black Thought.

                                                                  1. re: Tom34

                                                                    And again, that's an attitude that allows for no subtetly or differences in experience. When a black person uses the N word, it's a way of owning a word that's been used to degrade them. The history of that degradation includes being bought and sold as property, being denied voting rights, being the victims of segregation, and having white people walking around telling them what's morally responsible and what will give them credibility.

                                                                    Second, all this has nothing to do with Hollywood. For one thing, Food Network headquarters is in New York, with offices in a lot of other states, including Georgia and Tennessee. Ms. Deen's show was shot in Atlanta, although I have no doubt that she traveled to the west coast on occasion. This deposition was taken as part of a lawsuit by a former employee against her restaurant chain, and "Hollywood" had no involvement in that whatsoever.

                                                                    I completely fail to see where this hypocrisy you speak of lies.

                                                                2. re: mcf

                                                                  But when she showed up in that dress made from a curtain, with the curtain rod still attached, that was the last straw.

                                                                  1. re: Antilope

                                                                    LOL... I heart that image!

                                                                3. re: C. Hamster

                                                                  Not surprisingly, Deen's own deposition is less damning than the plaintiff's, or the reports in the media.

                                                                  "That's just not a word that we use as time has gone on. Things have changed since the 60s in the South. And my children and my brother object to that word being used in any cruel or mean behavior." Apparently repeating it when reporting someone else's conversation is OK, as is using the "n"-word as part of a funny joke.

                                                                  But she herself does not tell racist jokes. "Q. Ms Deen, have you told racial jokes? A. No, not racial."

                                                                  1. re: DeppityDawg

                                                                    In your eyes, maybe. You left out a whole lot of her testimony and cherry picked. It's not at all as innocuous as you make it out to be.

                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                      I'm not eager to defend her, but the media reports also cherry pick, and misrepresent the substance of her "admissions". Where she is in direct contradiction with the plaintiff, I don't know who to believe. She is clearly (and understandably) trying to protect herself and her brother.

                                                                      1. re: DeppityDawg

                                                                        See, as an employer, I protected all of us by not tolerating anyone's bigotry or abuse of others. Incredible protection from that. If you have a healthy work place culture of respect, it's amazing how your other employees will be your best defense against a baseless claim, leaping to defend you.

                                                                        Work place culture and attitude come from the very top and work down.

                                                                    1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                      Just the fact that you spelled it "n***ers" and spelled out "faggots" speaks worlds of what is acceptable by some and not by others. But as a gay man, I forgive you. :)
                                                                      People will never be on common ground about this subject. It's just the way it is.

                                                                      1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                        As a dyke and lesbo, the n word just strikes me as being the worst slur. But perhaps they are all equal.

                                                                        1. re: C. Hamster

                                                                          I believe they are all equally offensive to those they represent. Why one cannot even be said any longer but others are still bandied about is ridiculous. It's either all or nothing. And I vote for nothing. They are just words.

                                                                          1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                            There is no such thing as "just words." Words are weapons. Words start wars. Words are just about the most powerful tools we humans have. Ignore these facts to your detriment.

                                                                      2. re: C. Hamster

                                                                        C. Hamster: you left it wide open when you said "white woman".

                                                                        1. re: miss_belle


                                                                          Because, face it, me calling myself a dyke is a lot different than Paula Deen calling me a dyke.

                                                                          Mainstreaming a derogatory term is a form of empowerment for those that are denigrated,

                                                                          As a Caucasian, Paula calling someone a nigger is still ignorant and classless, if not downright hateful.

                                                                      3. I've never been able to even listen to her. She was able to get through a high school education, apparently, but still feels the need to speak as if she wasn't educated at all. But this is truly proof that she is classless.

                                                                        How can anyone explain bigotry away as "just a joke?"

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Terrie H.

                                                                          "How can anyone explain bigotry away as "just a joke?"


                                                                          1. re: mcf

                                                                            And I'm truly amazed at how many people are defending this, as if it's par for the course, normal, acceptable, she's old so it's ok, it's the south and it's just how thing are, free speech... just truly amazed.

                                                                        2. I read the entire deposition, all 149 pages. Ms. Deen is one of the most delusional people I have ever read.

                                                                          At one point she is asked if she was aware that her brother had been in rehab for cocaine and alcohol addiction. She replied that she was, but it was his ex wife that had the problem and he'd basically gone along for support.

                                                                          She basically says that it would depend on what he thought of the person as to whether or not it was appropriate to show porn to employees.

                                                                          16 Replies
                                                                              1. re: mcf

                                                                                If half the stuff in the plaintiff's deposition is true, there was a real problem at this restaurant. White staff allowed to use the front door and the customer restrooms; black staff could only use the back door and the employee restroom. Being called "niggers", "coons", and "monkeys" (not by PD). The porn, the intimidation, the sexual harassment, the physical violence…

                                                                                1. re: DeppityDawg

                                                                                  The one issue that *may* have made sense in the deposition was the bit about the restrooms. According to Deen, the staff in general was to use the back restrooms, but sometimes FOH staff could use the ones in the front. The BOH staff was required to use the ones in the back in order to keep their food stained clothing out of customer view. Of course, if they were only hiring whites for FOH that's its own problem.

                                                                                  1. re: JonParker

                                                                                    "Of course, if they were only hiring whites for FOH that's its own problem."

                                                                                    This was my inference when I read it, that it ended up as a racial split due to hiring practice.

                                                                                    1. re: mcf

                                                                                      Which is laughable because. Both restrauants have all colors working front and back of the house!

                                                                                      1. re: LaLa

                                                                                        But apparently there were white and black entrances, use of restrooms was distinguished by race as well.

                                                                              2. re: JonParker

                                                                                I read everything just now, although my PDF came up as 33 pages. This is truly alarming and is far worse than a few racial jokes....

                                                                                And FWIW my group of friends represents at least 7 races and we've all shared racial jokes. It's not for everyone but it doesn't automatically make someone bad or racist for saying them.

                                                                                1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                  "And FWIW my group of friends represents at least 7 races and we've all shared racial jokes. It's not for everyone but it doesn't automatically make someone bad or racist for saying them."

                                                                                  Exactly. Thank you.

                                                                                  1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                    But again, it's not just about her racism, which is horrible enough. It's the fact that she and her brother held the livelihoods of people in their hands, and used that power as an excuse to degrade them and foster an environment of racial hostility.

                                                                                    1. re: JonParker

                                                                                      She/Bubba used these racist and sexist terms to humiliate, denigrate and separate human beings. That's the issue. Their actions were far past "you know you're a redneck if/Confucius say/a ______ guy walks into a bar" etc jokes...

                                                                                  2. re: youareabunny

                                                                                    I think the big difference with the kinds of jokes we make is where we make them and and who we make them two.

                                                                                    You say you have friends to whom you make racial jokes to. How many coworkers have you made racial jokes to? How many employees? How many employers?

                                                                                    I think that's the far more relevant comparison than what we do with our friends/family.

                                                                                    1. re: cresyd

                                                                                      I think there's more to consider regarding the context of telling these jokes than simply who we tell them to.

                                                                                      Example: myself along with several others had clocked out at around 10pm. We were headed to the doors which which could only be unlocked by a manager. I was walking with 4 black male co workers. One of them said "we better watch out, 4 black men walking together they've definitely got the cameras on us" and once we got to the door the manager, an older white gentleman said "stay away from her!" (I am an Asian female).

                                                                                      Everyone had a good laugh. These guys had been working together for years while I was fairly new. It didn't seem that any of the men involved were offended, at most I would say it was unprofessional.

                                                                                      Of course not everyone shares that viewpoint but this was the extent of it. Never heard of supervisors referring to "that ____ in electrical that never gets anything done" as in the Paula Dean case.

                                                                                      Naturally, the safest thing would be to avoid comments and conversations like this. But reality is its boring, repetitive work, and a lot of these guys aren't just co workers but friends. They've reached a comfort level past how the weather is or what they think of the local baseball team.

                                                                                      1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                        I think many professionals would read your story and think "my goodness, at my place of employment I'd be fired/sued". And I think many professionals would read your story and think "that's nothing compared to what people say at my place of employment".

                                                                                        But at this point, Paula Deen isn't just a supervisor. She's not just the owner of a mom and pop business. She's basically the President/CEO of a large company. And this is one of the reasons that large companies have HR departments - to avoid getting sued. Not to mention that a huge part of Paula Deen's company involves her being a public personality.

                                                                                        As far as Paula Deen saying this stuff as a person - it makes her someone I wouldn't want to spend time with. As far as her doing this as the face of a large company - this is negligent and poor business.

                                                                                        1. re: cresyd

                                                                                          Certainly. What went on at my workplace was not with any malice. These are people that spend 40 hours a week together and seem to be on a similar level on that respect.

                                                                                          However, Paula and Bubba used race and gender to explain why certain people made more money than others, to insult and to humiliate. It seems that there was no one within the company that gave a damn how those at the receiving end felt. They took the abuse because they need the paycheck. There is no one in that company to keep the guys in charge in check.

                                                                                  3. Folks, as you might imagine, this thread isn't going that well. Please keep in mind that our guidelines about making personal attacks on and judgments about your fellow hounds are pretty clear. It's tough in a conversation like this where people may be saying they've done things you found distasteful, but it's still not okay to make personal remarks about them.

                                                                                    1. Well this was fun and let a bunch of folks splent their spleen ..but other than the woman once cooked, it seems to be going nowhere.

                                                                                      1. Unlike everything else she does, she didn't sugar coat this one.

                                                                                        1. It's the complaint, NOT the depo, that is attached to that news article. Great journalism, people. Reading through the complaint, I found some of these charges rather hard to believe. I get that you can be racially discriminated against, but for a white employee to complain about racial discrimination against a fellow black employee...hmm. As for the sexual discrimination allegations of men getting all these cushy jobs while women get the brunt of the work and none of the pay...uh, I find that somewhat hard to believe as well. I mean, if the allegations were true, I think this place should shut down, period. But as I read more and more of the actual allegations, I'm starting to smell a phony.

                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                          1. re: choctastic

                                                                                            I once reported a clinic for HIPAA violation that did not happen to me, but to the two patients just ahead of me. I told corporate "I'm calling because something tells me that neither of the two patients realize that this was wrong" and it turned out this was the first time they had ever heard about it. I don't find it hard to believe that someone would fight for wrongs commited against another.

                                                                                            And I have experienced sexual discrimination in the work place, was once told by a female supervisor that I was "hanging around the boys too much" and something about a "boys club" came up as well. I was working at Home Depot and 70% of the workforce were male, from teenagers to the elderly. Gender inequality is pervasive in many workplaces...

                                                                                            Companies get away with unpaid wages, safety violations all the time, sexual discrimination is not immune to that.

                                                                                          2. I just read all 149 pages of the May 17, 2013 deposition, which should NOT be confused with the complaint. The complaint is allegations, the deposition is Paula Deen's own responses from interrogation by the complainant's attorney.

                                                                                            Paula pleaded ignorance to almost everything. She was evasive as much as possible. That said, she admitted to using the N word "just once," in connection with the time a bank man held her up at gunpoint when she worked at a bank. She admitted to using the word in a conversation with her husband.

                                                                                            I mention this ONLY to clarify what the media is reporting from the complaint vs. the actual deposition. She also did admit to wishing for a "Southern Plantation" wedding for her brother with black middle aged servers like ones she saw at a restaurant somewhere in the south. In the deposition she did not use the N word, the use of that word was alleged in the complaint.

                                                                                            There's a lot of other troubling things in the deposition though. She appears to have turned a blind eye to the goings on at her brother's restaurant, even though it is owned by Paula Deen Enterprises, her entity. Consultants were brought in to evaluate the restaurant and were critical of her brother so she rebuffed their critique. She criticized the complainant for suggesting her brother's restaurant be turned into a catering facility because she said she needed the daily revenue from it, and then admitted Paula Deen Enterprises had infused more than $300,000 into the restaurant because it was consistently losing money.

                                                                                            She dismissed any possibility that her brother did improper things at the workplace because she has known him for "66 years." Yet when asked if she knew about her brother's addiction to cocaine and alcohol, which sent him into drug rehab, she said no she did not know he had a drug problem. So it would appear she does not know her brother as well as she says.

                                                                                            In my opinion the deposition reads like a sister covering her brother's sorry ass, knowing it's a sorry ass, but doing what she feels is best for her family's reputation. At times she's evasive, and contradictory. Enough of my two cents, read the deposition for yourself if you have an hour to kill:


                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                              Will definitely catch up on that in the AM, thanks.

                                                                                              Just from the complaint it did seen that much of the problem was Bubba. Not to say that Paula didnt have faults but it is a shame that she's not willing to admit any fault of her brother. He could use the help.... or.... something? Not sure how to "fix" his issues.

                                                                                              1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                OMG! That photo that TPM used to illustrate the story is positively frightening. Shades of Tammy Faye Baker.

                                                                                              2. On Fox website this a.m.

                                                                                                Food Network, which airs two of Paula's shows, "Paula's Best Dishes" and "Paula's Home Cooking" distanced themselves from Deen's comments:

                                                                                                "Food Network does not tolerate any form of discrimination and is a strong proponent of diversity and inclusion. We will continue to monitor the situation," a Food Network representative told Fox News.com on Wednesday.

                                                                                                16 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: miss_belle

                                                                                                  I believe that Deen has filmed upcoming episodes of Masterchef - it'll be interesting to see how they choose to deal with those episodes if this continues to be big news.

                                                                                                  1. re: miss_belle

                                                                                                    I highly doubt she, Bubba and whoever else were able to simply turn their diversity friendly switches on when FN honchos were around. I bet they knew she was inclined to such language but kept her for the cash cow that she was, hoping the truth wouldn't come out.

                                                                                                    1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                                      "I bet they knew she was inclined to such language but kept her for the cash cow that she was, hoping the truth wouldn't come out."

                                                                                                      I bet you could insert any number of names on TV in this statement and it would be true. OK, her behavior was far from stellar, but do many of you posting here believe the "stars" you all love are beyond the the actions of Paula Deen? Please. Mel Gibson was much loved for a good part of his career and look what happened. These people are all human and have good and bad things about them, just like us. Are we really so free of sin ourselves that we can throw stones? I doubt it. That is why I confessed to telling racist jokes myself; none of us are beyond behavior that someone finds wrong, insulting, etc. Let's all be real.

                                                                                                      1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                        That is true, but she took it far past a racist joke, particularly in her role as employer.

                                                                                                        I believe there's a song called "everyone is a little bit racist."

                                                                                                        1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                                          "but she took it far past a racist joke, particularly in her role as employer."

                                                                                                          Absolutely seems like it from what i heard and read, and I do not condone that.

                                                                                                          I guess I am just upset by how many people are "aghast" at her behavior and put themselves so far above any type of wrong behavior. I just dislike the "public stoning" so many people are willing to participate in when they have only the media's representation to go by. Living almost 52 years as a gay person and having had to endure not only prejudice but also deal with my own prejudice against others has colored my opinions on this subject in such a way that I just become incensed when this type of subject arises and I tend to just mouth off without always making sense. Sorry if I have offended anyone.

                                                                                                          1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                            I think I understand. While I'm disappointed in her behavior I'm not surprised. Racist jokes are nothing compared to what I've seen, read and heard online and experienced in person.

                                                                                                            Mel's drunken tirade, while definitely disturbing, moreso highlighted to me the fact that he is an incredibly misinformed man. As for PD, I think her racism, or in the least racial insensitivity is secondary to her lack of empathy, to her disregard of others' feelings, and respect. Sometimes I feel it's ignorance while at other times she seems drunk with power.

                                                                                                            1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                              I don't think you've offended anyone, but I admit that I find this kind of reaction encouraging. It was horrible when racists attacked 11 yr. old Sebastien De La Cruz online after his rendition of the national anthem, but it was encouraging that so much outrage over their actions followed.

                                                                                                              As a society we find intolerance, whether on the basis of race, gender or sexuality to be unacceptable. No, it's not true of everyone, and there are still people who cling to those ways.

                                                                                                              In the 1950s and 60s, intolerant attitudes were, if a matter of contention, still accepted in many ways -- supposedly "liberal" people thought that black people needed to be "taught" to be equal, that they just couldn't handle it if it was just given to them.

                                                                                                              Racism is hard to uproot. I do not consider myself a bigot, and don't think race or sexuality is a big deal. But in the back of my mind I know that part of the reason is because I believe that it's the right thing to do. Racism and other discrimination will be dead when people don't think it's the right way to feel, but they find feeling any other way incomprehensible.

                                                                                                              1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                Nah, haven't offended me :-)
                                                                                                                Frankly, per comments up thread, I am not shocked by her behavior. Remember those outtakes from her show where she was swearing like a sailor?

                                                                                                            2. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                              I think this will all blow over. It wasn't exactly front page news to begin with.

                                                                                                              1. re: miss_belle

                                                                                                                Yup. Considering what happened with Juan Carlos Cruz, this is nothing to FN, and Paula makes them far more money.

                                                                                                                1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                                                  I think this is the first post of yours I've disagreed with on this thread. I think Paula is tired anyway -- she's been around forever, her schtick is old, and her food doesn't really fit modern lifestyles. I think this could end her career, and I for one won't be disappointed if it does.

                                                                                                                  1. re: JonParker

                                                                                                                    Hey, I want her done too. I just assume people are still obsessed with her wigs and artery clogging crap!

                                                                                                                    How many PD shows are on FN, 3? I don't picture them in a hurry to get rid of them.

                                                                                                                    1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                                                      Paula has survived a lot of scandals. Frankly, I don't think FN will change a thing unless she goes out and drives drunk and kills a family of five.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                        Pretty much!

                                                                                                                        "Former Food Network chef Juan-Carlos Cruz told a homeless man he hired to kill his wife to avoid harming his two dogs and consider strangulation with pantyhose to avoid leaving a "bloody mess"

                                                                                                                        I don't recall how far they've gone to erase any trace of him as part of FN but it seems he's set the bar.

                                                                                                                  2. re: youareabunny

                                                                                                                    I think he was released this spring. Didn't do much of the nine years.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                      It was "just" solicitation, luckily the hitman came forward, but they definitely took his shows away as well as his FN bio.

                                                                                                          2. Some of the fake recipe names being sent to this hashtag are hilarious.


                                                                                                            15 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                              This morning, someone I know, may have also added Black (face) and White Cookies.

                                                                                                              1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                "This morning, someone I know, may have also added Black (face) and White Cookies."

                                                                                                                And that's not a racist joke???

                                                                                                                1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                  The mere mention of race is not by itself racism.

                                                                                                                  Just like the mere mention of pedophile priests is not anti Catholic. It's anti pedophilia.

                                                                                                                  1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                    No. Taking a very sensitive issue for the black population in this country (blackface) and making light of it to entertain the Twittersphere (and now people on this board) is indeed a racist joke and a form of racism. If not, where do you draw the line?

                                                                                                                    1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                      That's why I mentioned it. There is a hashtag going around on Twitter asking for Paula Deen "Recipes." It's meant as a lambasting skewering and joke.

                                                                                                                      Context is everything. Ever seen a celebrity roast? Things are said at those events in the name of humor that would NOT necessarily be acceptable in a WORKPLACE environment.

                                                                                                                      There is a huge difference, and I think you know that. At least you should. If not, now you do.

                                                                                                                      1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                        "There is a huge difference, and I think you know that. At least you should. If not, now you do."

                                                                                                                        I do not see the difference. You are making the distinction to make yourself feel better. Either you condone joking about race or you do not. You cannot justify one joke being OK and another not.

                                                                                                                        1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                          None of the Paula Deen Dishes comments used the N word. I'm not going to change your opinion and likewise.

                                                                                                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                            Exactly. So I am outta here. This has been tiring!
                                                                                                                            lol :)

                                                                                                                      2. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                        I think you need to make up your mind; your racist jokes are ok, but others are not?

                                                                                                                        Satirizing and excoriating racism isn't what's sensitive for black folks, in my experience.

                                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                          "I think you need to make up your mind; your racist jokes are ok, but others are not?"

                                                                                                                          Not what I said!!! I said the black face cookie joke was funny! Others on here are saying THEIR racist jokes are funny, but in the same breath bemoaning the fact that PD made racist jokes. Please read my posts.

                                                                                                                          1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                            I was pretty sure you were honest about making racial jokes and appreciating them in your posts. If I've misinterpreted your response about the cookie, I apologize, but I think you're the one missing the distinction between racial humor and humor skewering racism.

                                                                                                                      3. re: mcf

                                                                                                                        "Just like the mere mention of pedophile priests is not anti Catholic. It's anti pedophilia."

                                                                                                                        Oh, it's anti Catholic alright. Many people condemn the Catholic church when they here about these priests. That say the Catholic church and its structure, rules, etc. is to blame. They do not disassociate one from the other.

                                                                                                                        1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                          They are to blame, but Catholicism is not. It's not anti Catholic to be anti coverup and child abuse by priests.

                                                                                                                          My husband's parents were daily communicants for decades, they're as disgusted by it as anyone outside the church is, but that did/does not affect their support of parish outreach, their own church.

                                                                                                                          Faithful, but not blind.

                                                                                                                      4. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                        As I recently explained to a guy I was dating, there's a difference between being politically incorrect and being an asshole. Black (face) and White Cookies is politically incorrect. Paula was being an asshole. If you know something you're about to say is going to be hurtful to a person who will hear it, and you say it anyway, your an asshole. If you know a joke could be hurtful to someone, somewhere, but not to present company, then it's just an off color joke. It's fine line that requires a fair amount of social awareness - more than Paula Deen has.

                                                                                                                    2. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                      Those are terrible!! Lol

                                                                                                                      Tonight's menu will star a Jim CROWn roast. Ok I need to do better than that.

                                                                                                                    3. I haven't had a chance to read all the opinions here, but those that I did read seem to really be giving Paula Deen a tongue lashing for her comments.

                                                                                                                      For a different spin than most I have read, I don't see anyone really giving her any credit for her truthfulness. She knows she is going to face scrutiny and more backlash against her "brand", however she still seems content in telling the truth, when in all reality should could have just as easily lied, under oath, and avoided all this.

                                                                                                                      So.....if you ask me.....I would rather have an honest racist in my presence than one that will lie to my face about their views and or attitudes.

                                                                                                                      Just my $ .02

                                                                                                                      11 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                        Exactly, I'd rather have someone tell me to my face that they are a racist. At least you are honest about it.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Cachetes

                                                                                                                          If someone is honest about their opinions you can at least have an open dialog with them. Right, wrong or indifferent as your opinions may be, if your courageous enough to speak about them honestly then there is always a chance for you to change your opinion.

                                                                                                                          If you just smile and nod and and politely follow the "politically correct" opinions, but then silently preach or practice your hate, then it's much less likely that you will ever change your views.

                                                                                                                          Dialog in my opinion is always the key. Open, honest dialog.

                                                                                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                            That's not true, actually. There are a lot of people who are very open and honest with their opinions with whom it is impossible to have a conversation because their ideas have no logical basis or because they are so rigid that there is no communication possible. And I would never call publicly declaring your racism courageous. Many people conflate rigidity or pridefulness with strength and courage, and they are not.

                                                                                                                            1. re: Cachetes

                                                                                                                              Sorry if you missed my point. In my opinion the only CHANCE you have to change someone's opinion is through open and honest dialog. You can never change everyone's opinions, some people are just born ignorant, but without them being up front and honest about their views, you don't have a chance in hell. I'm not saying you can change every one's opinions.

                                                                                                                              I think it's courageous for her to admit to her statements knowing full well there are potentially significant repercussion for her admission. To my knowledge, and I'm not following this closely (or remotely for that matter) she isn't trying to defend her statements beyond "That's they way I grew up" or something to that manner.

                                                                                                                              I do not believe she is trying to stand behind or justify her statement, just clarifying how or why they were made. Again, I find it courageous to stand up and tell the truth knowing you have much more to lose than gain, and telling a white (no pun intended) lie would be so much easier.

                                                                                                                        2. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                          She was not especially forthcoming in the deposition. Her "confessions," if you will, were dragged out of her. The attorney questioning her alluded to witnesses to the comments. It's very lengthy, but if you have an hour you can see what she said and how she was led to say it.

                                                                                                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                            No, honestly I could care less. I heard the news clip this morning while getting dressed and now saw this thread.

                                                                                                                            Paula Deen (and so many others like her) in general are just a mystery to me. How we select or place these people to be our "celebrity" is beyond me.

                                                                                                                            Perhaps, if we as a society placed more concern to whom we give attention to, and subsequently raise their level in our society to one of celebrity, we could avoid so many of these "messes" we find ourselves in when we look behind the make up, the sets, and the propaganda that create these celebrity images.

                                                                                                                            We are fairly reckless with the individuals we place on a pedestal and want to act with shock and dismay when we see them for who they really are.

                                                                                                                            1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                              "No, honestly I could care less. I heard the news clip this morning while getting dressed and now saw this thread."

                                                                                                                              She didn't "admit" them so much as she was forced to acknowledge evidence against her. She's not being courageous, she's likely in fear of being caught on perjury charges.

                                                                                                                              1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                Well if that is the case then I stand corrected.

                                                                                                                                1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                                  She was under oath. If she lied under oath, she can be charged with perjury. I would think her testimony stretches the truth quite a bit.

                                                                                                                            2. re: TrishUntrapped

                                                                                                                              It's a deposition. She's been coached to say and elaborate as little as possible. The only purpose of a deposition is to have a written record to try to impeach her with if she deviates a millesecond from it while testifying at trial a year from now. (and increase billable hours).

                                                                                                                            3. re: jrvedivici

                                                                                                                              She knows there are witnesses and corroboration, is all. Plus, she doesn't think she did anything wrong, it appears.

                                                                                                                              1. re: beevod

                                                                                                                                Sadly, this does bring out the worst in us doesn't it?

                                                                                                                                Let's go back to talking about food and finding common bonds that bring us together.

                                                                                                                              2. My understanding was she was robbed at gunpoint by a black man and had a gun held to her head while she was a bank teller. I could see how that might color your viewpoint somewhat. I was raised that there were white people and there also was white trash and I should always strive not to be one of them due to my behavior. (or meth heads or crackers or whatever you want to call them.) I guess if I have to give a deposition I'm rascist against myself.

                                                                                                                                8 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                                  For years she had a fear of leaving her home. I wonder if this robbery was a cause of that?

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Antilope

                                                                                                                                    In that context I can understand her use of the word. While we are generally taught never to stoop to someone's low level, we are only human and in such a situation I'd probably say far worse things.

                                                                                                                                    My ex was robbed at gunpoint by 3 black men. He used to make comments about how he hated black men (people in general) because they robbed him, I told him "black men didn't rob you, THOSE black men robbed you." I then discussed with him that every single time I was victimized it was committed by a white man, yet here I am with you. Of course he ended up doing the same so nuts to that!! My point is, I don't care if 100 _____ people do bad things to me, it's not going to cause me to generalize the whole lot.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: youareabunny

                                                                                                                                      There is no excuse for the word, but I wonder if her phobia came from the trauma of the robbery. I could see flashbacks from that.

                                                                                                                                    2. re: Antilope

                                                                                                                                      Yes it was according to her autobiography

                                                                                                                                    3. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                                      She has a right to think all sorts of bad things about that robber. The expression she chose says more about her than him.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                                        You think it's ok for someone to condemn and point out, in a business no less, all other people who have the skin color of one person who committed a crime that has nothing to do with this business?

                                                                                                                                        Oh dear, I was robbed by a guy who looked Chinese so I hate all Chinese people? Sorry, but I'm quite troubled by this.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Terrie H.

                                                                                                                                          I don't think I ever said it was OK.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                                                                            "I could see how that might color your viewpoint somewhat. I was raised that there were white people and there also was white trash,,," Yeah, you did.

                                                                                                                                      2. Folks, at this point, the thread continues to go down the path of hounds talking about whether other hounds are racist, so we're going to lock it now.