Saturday, June 22, 2013

(UPDATED) Paul Deen alleged as a racist, dropped by Food Network

Updates at bottom.

I've written about the Food Network several times lately, lol. (Here, here, and here) Maybe because the level of sin has reached even this last 'bastion' of G-rated programming. This morning I delved into the Paula Deen issue where she has been revealed to be (allegdly) racist and has been dropped from Food Network.

I live in Georgia, but I'm from New England. Famous cooking personality and foodie titan Paula Deen has many supporters down here. This is big news in GA, Deen's home state.

Her shows on Food Network are- Paula Deen's Best Dishes, Paula's Party, and Paula's Home Cooking. Not to mention the shows her sons have also. She has restaurants, a line of cooking wares. She has cookbooks, and makes guest appearances on many other Cooking Channel and Food Network shows. She's everywhere.

I never liked her.

But to each his own, I said, and went on with my life.

However, a while ago it came out that she had had Type II diabetes for three years but kept it hidden, all the while cooking fatty and sugary foods on her shows. That's hypocrisy of the highest order, and lying. Then it came out that not only she had diabetes but came clean on the same day she had a lucrative contract with a drug company she was promoting to help with diabetes. That's crass greed.

NY Times put it this way:
"January 2012 when she announced she had Type 2 diabetes on the same day she endorsed the diabetes drug Victoza and a lucrative collaboration with Novo Nordisk, the drug’s manufacturer. Because she had built her career on a no-holds-barred approach to sugar and fat (creating recipes like a cheeseburger patty sandwiched between two doughnuts and a Better than Sex cake made with cake mix, pudding mix, and heavy cream), she was roundly criticized for encouraging an unhealthy diet for others, hiding her illness and then trying to profit from it. "

Exactly!

Then it seems she and her brother, who own a restaurant together, were being sued for sexual harassment, racial discrimination, and a creating fearful workplace in which the plaintiff (Manager Lisa Jackson) was subjected to profanity and gender discrimination among other things, on a daily basis for five years.

I read the GA lawsuit. I can't even repeat some of the things that Jackson alleges Paula Deen and her brother said, they are so crass, gross, and profane. The plaintiff has her side, and Deen of course has her side, but in this incident I paste below from the plaintiff's lawsuit, let it be known that in Deen's deposition she did not deny saying that she was planning a southern style plantation wedding- it's just that Deen discounted the slaves/racial aspect of it. Click for larger.

This is Deen's response to that allegation of the desire to have a "true southern plantation wedding."

"And I remember telling them about a restaurant that my husband and I had recently visited. And I'm wanting to think it was in Tennessee or North Carolina or somewhere, and it was so impressive. The whole entire wait staff was middle-aged black men, and they had on beautiful white jackets with a black bow tie. I mean, it was really impressive. And I remember saying I would love to have servers like that, I said, but I would be afraid that somebody would misinterpret." (source)

Go ahead and read the plaintiff's allegations, you will be shocked. There are allegations of hiring only whites to work the front of the restaurant, to calling the black staff "monkeys,", to having a black-only bathroom in the restaurant for their workers, and these things are corroborated by witnesses in other depositions.

From the deposition:
Q. Miss Deen, earlier in your testimony you indicated that one of the things that you had tried to -- that you and your husband tried to teach your children was not to use the N word in a mean way, do you recall that testimony?
A. Yes.
Q. Okay. And could you give me an example of how you have demonstrated for them a nice way to use the N word?
In the deposition it was also stated, as well as in the lawsuit alleged by the plaintiff, that the plaintiff had hired a consultant to review the evidence and make a determination as to whether there was sufficient cause to go forward with the lawsuit. There was.

Compare with Paula Deen's back-pedaling in her deposition. Deen was asked in her deposition if she had ever used the N-word. Her response was -

"Yes, of course."

Of course? Like we all do? Like it's a normal thing? No, of course NOT.

She tried to say that it was when she was held up at a bank and a black man held a gun to her head, but her response of "yes of course" belied an inner familiarity with using the word that many in the rest of America do not possess. That, plus the other times she admitted to using the word, (but could not recall exactly when), committing to an appearance on the Today Show, and then not showing up, did it for me. In reading what she is alleged to have said at the restaurant by the Manager Lisa Jackson, it all added up to a distasteful bundle I do not care to unwrap any longer.

One incident perhaps can be explained away. Or two. But using the n-word as a matter of course, planning a plantation wedding and seeking black-only waitstaff, her and her brother's repeated pattern of racial, ethnic, and gender harassment- in front of witnesses, cannot be explained away. There were just too many things to overlook.

A television network is a corporation and corporations exist to make money. It says a lot that a money maker like Deen was dropped summarily, even though the network had stuck by her when the diabetes issue came to light.

Read the lawsuit and the deposition. It presents a dark and ugly picture. Apparently Food Network was fed up too, and they dropped Deen from the network.

In Numbers 32:23 we read a familiar verse:

"But if you will not do so, behold, you have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out."

"Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops." (Luke 12:3).

It is every northerner's secret certainty that all southerners believe and act as Mrs Deen did, sweet on the outside and racist on the inside.

Many southerners who do not believe as Mrs Deen does fear that they will be lumped into the racist category without cause.

It is a sad day when sins such as hers are revealed to validate both the secret certainty of the Yankee and the secret embarrassment of the fair-minded southerner.

It is also a blight against Christianity and Jesus in particular when someone who professes Jesus holds contemptuous views and even uses their faith in fringe ways to oppress others (as I read in the deposition).

It's not easy to have the floodlight of Glory shine on you to reveal all the ugliness inside. I know I would hate it and will be embarrassed at myself when it does happen, either on this side of the veil or when Jesus comes. Mrs Deen needs prayer to open her eyes and heart to the true love of Jesus so that she will embrace these verses:

"Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all, and in all." (Colossians 3:11)

"For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him." (Romans 10:12)

In heaven we will all be one tribe: the body of Christ-

"so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another." (Romans 12:5)

I cannot wait for the day when we are all truly one, without sin and glorifying and worshiping Jesus from every tongue, tribe and nation as ONE people: as Zephaniah 3:9 says we will do-

“For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech, that all of them may call upon the name of the LORD and serve him with one accord."

The ugliness of the world is heartbreaking, which makes the glory and light of heaven so appealing, desirable, and beautiful!

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Updates.
here are a few articles that in my opinion relay the meat of the In this CSM article, they raise the issue I had above-
Paula Deen and the N-word: A plate of bigotry with that fried chicken? 
Paula Deen, the woman who has put Southern culture on a pedestal, may be responsible for raising deeper questions about whether the marketing of Southern cuisine comes with a side of bigotry.
"But what really irked a lot of Americans about Deen’s comments is a long-held suspicion about Southern culture and its food: that it’s all honey and biscuits on top, but ultimately debilitating and unhealthy below the crust. That may not be the whole truth, but to say it’s not part of the truth would be disingenuous, especially given the controversy cooked up by arguably the South’s greatest culinary ambassador."

In this article from Mediaite, "Paula Deen’s Sin Wasn’t That She ‘Said A Bad Word’". In Deen's wish to plan a wedding that featured all-Black waitstaff dressed as in the Shirley Temple tap dancing days, (her own words according to plaintiff), "See, to Paula Deen, the slavery part was incidental to her appreciation for that scene. The aesthetic that she enjoyed was centered around her own experience of living in the South. That’s the essence of white privilege, the ability to just adore the crisp “professionalism” of these men and women, without a thought for the price of that comforting visual. She didn’t like the slavery, she just liked the way it looked."

Well said.

10 comments :

  1. It's disturbing how many of Paula Deen's fans are up in arms over her firing from Food Network. Apparently they see nothing wrong with using that type of language, or treating fellow humans as though they are sub-human. Their excuse is that other celebs do the same thing. That's nonsense because as you said, Beth, if you're a Christian you can't go around doing things like this. It's extremely embarrassing for the faith.

    May I add that ANYONE, Christian or not, with a shred of common decency would be sickened to do even one of the things that Paula "allegedly" did.

    http://tv.yahoo.com/news/paula-deen-fans-vent-outrage-food-network-180024556.html

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    1. Thanks for the link, anonymous.

      I was shocked at the profanity. Apparently she uses it so casually. "It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person.” ...But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. 19For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander. 20These are what defile a person. "

      Matthew 15:11, 18-20

      And I haven't even mentioned the workplace pornography.

      Delete
  2. Elizabeth, you wrote of Paula Deen "I never liked her."

    Now, how does that differ from other people who decide they don't like somebody based on whatever, like skin color?

    You also seem to have something against southerners? Is this bigotry?

    There are three things about this whole issue that really bother me.
    1) Paula Deen is no different from every single human being. We have ALL thought and said things about others that were unkind, even racist, sexist or what have you. To say you have not sinned in this way is to lie. Because we all have done this. I am not excusing Paula Deen, I am pointing out that we ought not be hypocrites and pretend we have not done the very same thing.

    2)Slavery still exists today. Where? One place is in the continent of Africa, among blacks! Blacks enslaving one another. http://www.frontline.org.za/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1011:slave-redemption-in-sudan&catid=16:political-social-issues-cat&Itemid=201

    3) Paula Deen is going to be punished to make a point, I am afraid. Just like they did with Martha Stewart. Why is it always the women who have to pay through the nose (so to speak) for their overt sins? Men seem to get away with quite a bit (there are exceptions like Jerry Sandusky). But often with men in our society there is a kerfuffle and then it all dies down again. Remember Herman Cain when he ran for president? Some of the very same accusations were made about him, and there was even a monetary settlement between the accusers and the restaurant association. But afterwards, people forget and all is business as usual.

    But the women, who do the same thing that men do, go to prison (Martha Stewart). Now why is that?

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    1. It is not bigotry to have a preference about what cooking show you watch. I don't like Deen (nor Rachael Ray) because they are loud. I don't watch Guy Fieri for the same reason. It is my preference to watch quieter shows like Chopped where no one yells. Don't read bigotry into things when they aren't there.

      You are also reading into me having something against southerners. I live in the south and love it. Having a negative opinion is not being "against", it is having an opinion. Thus, I don't like Deen and I do like Jeff Foxworthy on American Baking Competition. End of opinion.

      Having a negative opinion about something is not hate, it is not prejudice and it is not bigotry. The culture today- including you- makes having an opinion that is an opinion different from theirs all about hate. Don't go there.

      For your edification, Bigotry is defined as: "the state of mind of a bigot: someone who, as a result of their prejudices, treats other people with hatred, contempt, and intolerance on the basis of a person's ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, or other characteristics."

      Yes, we are all sinners and in that way Mrs Deen is no different than anyone else. However that is not to say that culture, the law, or corporate rules enforcers forgives or overlooks it.

      Secondly, Mrs Deen's lie in which she continued to cook food that had made her ill, conceal the fact of her diabetes, and only coming public with her lucrative deal with the drug company on the day she singed the contract, made it look like she was profiting from her disease at the expense of others. I did not like that. I have a negative opinion of a person who would do that. Therefore it is my free American choice to refrain from watching her show for that reason or any other reasons I decide. Sorry that grieves you.

      I also do not like her style of food. I also do not like the many sexual references she makes to her food and while cooking food.

      What comes out of a person reveals the heart, I'd quoted above. The issue is not using a once long ago unfortunate slur in the heat of the moment. It is a lifelong pattern of hypocrisy and racial prejudice that in corporate life, is illegal, never mind unpalatable.

      Please do not make this about gender either. Men go to jail too, for pete's sakes.

      Speaking of prejudice, I am sad that in your response instead of sticking to verses or at least even the topic, your first thought is to attack me personally. Not good.

      Delete
    2. Sorry, i misunderstood that when you said you never liked her you meant it was her show you never liked. I am in agreement with you for the same reasons you listed. You also spoke out against southerners without any scripture to back up what you said. It rubbed me the wrong way because it seemed to find fault with them when the truth is that we have all sinned and fallen short (including those in the north). YOu wrote: "It is every northerner's secret certainty that all southerners believe and act as Mrs Deen did, sweet on the outside and racist on the inside."
      I didnt attack you personally but asking you to look at your own attitudes and writing in light of what you say against others. I did stick to the topic?

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    3. You called me a bigot for saying that I didn't like Mrs Deen for having used the n-word. Not the definition of bigotry, lol.

      Speaking out against sin is perfectly OK.

      Scripture used,

      Numbers 32:23, (Colossians 3:11) (Romans 10:12) (Romans 12:5) (Zephaniah 3:9)

      As far as cultural attitudes, I wrote this:

      "It is every northerner's secret certainty that all southerners believe and act as Mrs Deen did, sweet on the outside and racist on the inside. Many southerners who do not believe as Mrs Deen does fear that they will be lumped into the racist category without cause."

      and a few hours later the Christian Science Monitor echoed the *exact* same sentiments which is excerpted above and linked to.

      I did not speak out against southerners. Thank you for your time.

      Delete
  3. You're right. The ugliness of the world is heartbreaking and as Christians we have heaven to look forward to. There's a whole other aspect to what's been going on from the Paula Deen hoopla that shows the ugliness and how lost our nation is becoming. Wal-Mart and Target have jumped on the Paula Deen thing and cut ties with her. People are acting like she's the worst sinner ever! How come Food Network, Wal-Mart, and Target and EVERYBODY else who is so quick to judge her....are not pointing out the sins of others they are associated with? The openly homosexual people, for instance? The people who have had their unborn babies murdered through abortion or advocate for it? I happened to have the TV turned on the day after the Paula Deen stuff broke and it was the topic of conversation on a CBS Show called "The Talk" and the panel of women were really high and mighty on their disapproval of PD and how terrible she was, blah, blah. This coming out of the mouth of one woman who is a lesbian and another who has a daughter who is a lesbian and, thus, in favor of gay marriage!! OMGosh. But it's a sign of the times we are in, isn't it? Morals are being turned upside down...what God has said is sin, our nation is embracing as a 'right' and as good.

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    1. Juanita, you're absolutely right, that people who are or endorse lesbianism, hypocrisy, lying and immorality denounce racism.

      However, we do denounce racism. When it appears, we do something about it, and that's what happened in the Paul Deen case.

      It is hypocritical, of course, for companies that allow homosexuality to permeate their brand to draw the boundary at racism. But that's the world for you, accommodating. It tolerates some sins and encourages others. For a long time racism was encouraged and fornication wasn't. And again, that's the world for you.

      Delete
  4. I rest my case:

    http://frontpagemag.com/2013/humberto-fontova/next-to-anthony-bourdain-paula-deens-a-saint/

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  5. This isn't propositional truth. Just because one person out there is said to be unethical doesn't mean another one can't be.

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