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View Diary: Why Paula Deen's Racism Matters: Black Dignity Versus White Fantasies (42 comments)

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  •  Did she say she thought it was still OK? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mallyroyal, a2nite

    I haven't been following this story closely at all, but from what I can tell she mentioned using the word about 50 years ago and followed up by saying that she regrets it and finds it unacceptable now.  What am I missing?

    •  the deposition, her recent comments (9+ / 0-)

      from the awards dinner. her "apology" is such a poor little me deal that it too is laughable. she should own her behavior and attitudes. never mind, those of her brother.

      •  And now her sons (12+ / 0-)
        "I'm disgusted by the entire thing, because it began as extortion and it has become character assassination," Bobby Deen said.

        Jamie Deen said it's "ridiculous, completely absurd to think there is an environment of racism in our business, and it's really disrespectful to the people that we work with. We have strong, educated men and women of character that have been with us for five, 10, 15, 20 years. To think they would allow themselves to be in this position is simply baloney. It's ridiculous."

        Seeking remedy to a hostile work environment is now extortion. And how could it possibly be hostile if somebody has been forced to put up with for 20 years, not saying a word for fear of retaliation. That her sons have no conception that workplace discrimination is a real thing speaks volumes as to their feelings.
        •  Commenting on an active court case is NEVER a good (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          oortdust

          idea.  "We can't comment on a case that is still playing out in the courts.  When this is settled, we'll have more to say about the matter," is probably how all of them should have addressed it.

          As for their attitudes about workers, when you are the recipient of your parent's largesse and not your own, you tend to get a bit defensive of your parent.  It's completely understandable.

          But if these boys are smart, and they must be since they are making money trying to make their mom's food more healthful, they'll learn from this situation, too.

          •  They'll learn (0+ / 0-)

            to make sure no cameras are rolling when they are putting their racism is on display...

            Fear doesn't just breed incomprehension. It also breeds a spiteful, resentful hate of anyone and everyone who is in any way different from you.

            by awesumtenor on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 04:08:30 PM PDT

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        •  I saw them on CNN this morning and it (7+ / 0-)

          was compelling tv to watch those two guys convincingly deny the very things that their mother admitted to. When confronted with her sworn statements they denied - and did so quite forcefully - that she could ever have said or done any of that!
          Who here was shocked to learn of her true disposition?
          Anybody?  

          Maya Angelou: "Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can't be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest."

          by JoanMar on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 12:17:04 PM PDT

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      •  I'm roughly the same age as her. (roughly!) (12+ / 0-)

        I grew up around similar attitudes and family talk. My dad's side of the family was out-and-out racist and I'm afraid to really know the past because I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be pretty. Some of my family still is and I've basically lost touch with them over these attitudes.

        And yet.

        I know that people don't talk like that and don't have those attitudes. I know that we don't dress up another race to serve us just for our own delight. I know.

        And even though I'm very familiar with the language and the attitudes, I never say those things, don't allow them to be said around me unconfronted, and would never even dream of bringing them into the workplace.

        Her excuse of "I'm 60 yo, blah, blah" is just such garbage.  Millions of people lost those attitudes long ago.  I lost them in junior high when I realized all those other looking kids had feelings and everything else, just like me.  Not that I hadn't been soaked in it for every years since I'd been born or anything. And I got rid of that attitude in the 1960s.  

        So Paula Deen is full of it. Totally.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 11:48:31 AM PDT

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    •  Her speech and actions indicated she thought (9+ / 0-)

      it was a natural, acceptable way to act toward people of color. I'd not heard about her using the word 50 years ago. Was her ruminating about servants dressing as slaves for a wedding also from 50 years ago? I don't know. I'd heard of this woman only when the diabetes/butter issue arose.
      Not one of us is vindicated by condemning her. The ugliness continues every day. I'm not one who ever condones it. It makes me feel no better that she now "regrets." She regrets it because people now know about it.

      "He went to Harvard, not Hogwarts." ~Wanda Sykes

      Blessinz of teh Ceiling Cat be apwn yu, srsly.

      by OleHippieChick on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 11:37:27 AM PDT

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    •  She was born in 1947, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OleHippieChick, nellgwen, sethtriggs

      according to wikipedia. I don't think she's been on TV for 50 years. That would have been when she was 13.

      So, no.

      "Let each unique song be sung and the spell of differentiation be broken" - Winter Rabbit

      by cotterperson on Tue Jun 25, 2013 at 11:47:21 AM PDT

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    •  She doesn't think it's ok. But the language is (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OleHippieChick, nellgwen, sethtriggs

      only one part of it.  The other is the essence of the lawsuit, in which she was deposed.  She is being sued for creating a hostile work environment for one of her African-American, female employees.  So her use of the n-word, along with requests for black waiters for her brother Bubba's "plantation wedding" are presented as evidence in the case.

      The case is being tried in the court of public opinion as well.  That court is far from perfect, as Paula is beginning to learn.  A little humility and a little less explanation for her behavior would probably serve her well right now.

      I don't want to pile on with other issues.  No need.  The issue here is creating a hostile work environment.  

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