EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

July 1, 2013

Deen's quick fall from grace

The Butter Queen has fallen.

Paula Deen, a long-time Food Network darling, fell from grace recently when she admitted to using a racial epithet. Deen admitted during a lawsuit deposition that she’d used the N-word. The lawsuit, which alleges sexual and racial harassment, was filed by one of the employees at her Savannah restaurants. The suit names Deen and her brother, Bubba Hier.

Lisa Jackson worked at Deen’s Lady & Sons and Bubba’s Seafood and Oyster House for more than five years. She claims in her suit that Deen and Hier committed numerous acts of violence, discrimination and racism that resulted in the end of her employment at the restaurants.

Deen’s lawyer has been quoted as saying the allegations are completely fabricated.

Soon after the news broke, Deen issued an apology for “the wrong I’ve done.”

“I want to apologize to everybody for the wrong that I’ve done,” she said. “I want to learn and grow from this. Inappropriate and hurtful language is totally, totally unacceptable. I’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way but I beg you, my children, my team, my fans, my partners – I beg your forgiveness.”

Yes, Paula, people make mistakes. But using the N-word in this day and age is just unacceptable, regardless of how it is used.

One could argue that rappers use it all the time, so what’s the difference?

The difference is, well, there is no difference. It’s unacceptable, whether you’re rapping, ­joking or using it as a racial slur. No one should ever use the N-word. Period.

Those around Deen, including her sons, have said she was just being honest while under oath during the time of the deposition. They’ve said she’s not a racist – just honest.

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