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View Diary: Paula Deen: What is forgiveness? What does progress look like? (77 comments)

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  •  One of my several jobs... (3+ / 0-)
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    roycej, pat bunny, tobendaro

    (in this economy you put a few together to equal one), involves serving and bartending at a family restaurant.

    When I go to the line, I hear a constant stream of n-words. Shocking? No actually.

    Almost all the guys who work back there are black. While I get on fine with them and we all count each other as friends, the n-wording bugs the hell out of me.

    I've heard the excuses. "We want to own it." "If you use it enough it'll lose it's poison." I suppose I get that.

    But I grew up in the 60's in rural Appalachia. I heard relatives, my own father, 90 percent of the adults in my life use that word so much it sickened me. My mother was the exception. I remember using it once when I was probably 7-8 years old. She greeted it with a hot slap across my face.

    Most of the adults from my childhood are dead now. If I had to guess, I'd guess most of them would be considerably more enlightened today. My father came around--hell, he even became fast friends with the Africans in my sister's steel band (I just teared-up at the memory of that).

    I guess the point I'm meandering toward is that if people have changed in their hearts and minds, maybe we should cut them some slack. The real evil was the racism of the time, not the rhetoric.

    As for Paula Deen, my BS antenna is twitching a bit at the "used it once when there was a gun in my face" excuse. She's handled this thing miserably.

    She's sixty-something, I believe from Georgia. I'd be shocked if she doesn't have some racist DNA. If she hasn't purged it yet, there's no time like the present. Give me a sincere display of contrition and outreach to the black community and I'm happy so start forgiving right way.

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