I've never been a fan of Paula Deen but I got tired of reading so many differing articles, describing her. So I sat down and read her deposition....all 149 pages of it.
I found nothing racist at all........and I was looking for it. It has been terribly distorted. It also shows that the former employee who's suing her, was not ever Employee of the Year in her behavior while working for the Paula Deen Enterprises.
The attorney kept inserting the work "plantation" as it was never used by Paula. It's right there in black and white. There is no statements that say anything about white or black bathrooms....only guest bathrooms and employee bathrooms.
Sounds to me like a witch hunt.
I would encourage people to read the depo and see how twisted the media has made this.
I have never liked her persona, her personality, her "aw shucks I'm just a good ol' Southern woman". Being from the south (Louisiana), I never wanted somebody like her representing it because I always found her to be an over-the-top caricature.
So I am not happy at all that I've started feeling sorry for her but I'm reading all these half-truths, misquotes, and complete and utter fabrications that are being reported about her and then I'm watching her entire livelihood crumbling at her feet and I feel pity for her.
This does not make me happy.
(Do not take this as any sort of endorsement of her or anything she may have done, I just feel sorry for her)
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I think some of us may be reading different documents, in a manner of speaking, because I have read both depositions, not just one. And Jackson's claims are not any less worthy of consideration than the numerous claims Paula has now made, some decidedly contradictory. Regarding the African-American tap dancing wedding theme, my understanding is that the only specific of that conversation that Deen denies is the alleged use of the N-word in that particular instance. It is entirely possible that she contradicted herself with regard to those specifics in another part of the deposition that I missed because her ramblings are sometimes hard to follow.
Regarding the 'black' and 'white' bathrooms it is clear from reading both depositions that there is an employee and a customer bathroom, nominally speaking -- no one disputes that as far as I am aware -- but there is an allegation that the Caucasian employees were encouraged to use the customer bathroom while the African-American employees were told to use the employee bathroom, so that the African-American employees effectively became segregated. And I am going to just bottom line this with two concluding thoughts: the legal case has still yet to fully play out and both sides will be considered, not just Deen's. If there are numerous witnesses that back up Jackson's allegations, as has been alleged, Paula and Bubba are going to have to come up with one heck of a conspiracy theory to explain away this alleged hellish discriminatory nightmare with multiple witnesses backing it up.
Secondly -- and this is big bottom line with regard to outcomes already determined -- the companies that cut ties with Deen did so because of her own admission of the use of the N-word, specifically with the addendum of, "of course".
It is my firm belief that corporations with executives that are well familiar with history and sociology are painfully aware that there is no comparison between someone of a historical oppressor class using that word toward the oppressed class and African-Americans sometimes leveraging that word to try and claim and re-brand it in order to gain some empowerment. (I agree entirely with the posts of Shay and BSL that this occasional path in the African American community is absolutely not the way to go about that, but consider it a side issue because there is simply no comparison between the two uses since the original use stems from a dynamic of oppression and power -- in one of the nastiest historically recorded uses of oppression and power in all of human history -- and the other stems from a confused and pained historical reaction to that.)
So, to try and tie this all up, in my day job I look at companies to determine what makes them worthy of clients' money and also to determine potential business partnerships for public offerings. So, I look very carefully at company management every single day. And I look for management that holds and promotes solid free market values. I look for strong leadership. I look for integrity. I look for consistent character and a steady hand at the helm at all times, particularly in times of crisis management. Paula Deen has displayed none of these qualities. And, not only that, but in admitting that she has used the N-word -- along with a flippant "Yes. Of course" -- she has made the skin crawl of everyone in business management who looks at the world through an equitable paradigm. These final few paragraphs sum up the consensus I have been hearing the past week from within the business community. And I am not familiar with the business community falling victim to witch hunts. We operate on logic, not emotion.
"Do you want to change the world?...Think Different, Be Different...Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish…Now, let’s go invent tomorrow.” – Steven Paul Jobs
Eccellent post, chrisg.
I thought this was an interesting commentary.
Janus Adams: An Open Letter to Paula Deen
Count your blessings!
I just thought of something VERY positive to say about Paula Deen:
Since all of this scandal, or whatever you want to call it, hit.........
Here at FORT & the media in general has quit talking about Kim Kardashian!
I'll bet it's frying her (Kim's) hide.
"Is this Heaven? No, it's Iowa. --Field of Dreams--"
Oh yeah. I bet Kim is freaking out. It's so nice to have her out of the camera's eye for awhile. Kris is trying to make up for it though.
The average dog is a nicer person than the average person