Paula Deen: The Popeye defense
FURTHER UPDATE: 7 p.m., Wal-Mart Stores just announced they are dropping Paula Deen’s products from their stores.
UPDATE: 9:32 a.m. Based on her Today show appearance, it was announced Paula Deen lost another endorsement – from Caesar’s Entertainment.
With her two apology videos going bust, Paula Deen took to the airwaves on the Today show this morning to apologize for her use of the N-word, which she admitted to in a deposition she gave in a court proceeding.
The tears were flowing as PR sound bite after PR sound bite emanated from Paula’s mouth.
“Every creature on this earth was created equal.”
“He who is without sin cast the first stone.”
“If God led us to it, he’ll get us through it.”
“There is something evil out there…”
“If you’ve never committed a sin, pick up a rock and throw it at me as hard as you can.”
And then there was the Popeye defense: “I is what I is and I’m not changing.”
The Paula Deen saga has clearly ignited a spark in many of us. Fans have created a ‘We Support Paula Deen’ Facebook page, which has more than 410,000 followers as of this morning.
On Chowhound.com, a serious food website, there are hundreds of postings about Paula Deen on four threads, here, here, and here, and one thread which had to be closed by moderators because it got too personal and heated.
Frank Bruni of the New York Times has even weighed in.
Sponsorship-wise, through her tears, Paula had the bearings to tell Matt Lauer that she has only lost two deals: Food Network has dropped her show, and Smithfield Foods has dropped her contract. QVC has been on the fence, so Paula did a warm, folksy shout out to QVC. No shout out for the diabetes medication she is touting. Guess it’s not in play.
Now the good that has come out of this Paula Deen mess. And there is good. Racial slurs are UNACCEPTABLE. If you’ve been hiding under a rock somewhere and don’t know that… know it now. Racial slurs equal hate. In her deposition, Paula seems to believe it is okay to use them in jokes, where they don’t harm anyone. No. Wrong.
So, thank you Paula Deen for raising awareness of an issue we all should have known but apparently some of us don’t. We is what we is.