In defense of Deen
Paula Deen’s recent scandal, in which she has been accused by her employees of practicing racial discrimination and making racist remarks, has many people wondering what is and what is not considered politically correct.
Those who are watching the scandal unravel from afar have a lot to think about. Many adults may remember a time when the accusations made against Deen were par for the course. However, for young people, the picture is a little less black and white.
The amount of social integration in UH alone could lead people to think that racial lines have been blurred.
No one should ever use the N-word or any racially offensive language. These are moral standards by which everyone should live.
Journalism professor Bryan Butler said Deen is being held to a high standard for a celebrity chef.
“I wish that we held politicians to similar standards. No one seems to care about the filibuster, about the abortion clinics,” Butler said, adding that Deen’s controversy has received “more attention than it deserves.”
According to The Washington Post, Deen said she used the N-word 30 years ago. For some reason, it didn’t seem all that important back then. Her sons said the answer is plain and simple: “character assassination” and “extortion”.
According to the New York Post, son Bobby Deen said “The important thing here is for people to know that that is not her heart.”
To call Deen a racist because she used the N-word is a bit far-fetched because according to the Huffington Post, Deen said she used the word a long time ago, and everyone makes mistakes. Of course, the usage of hateful language shouldn’t be tolerated, but I would be remiss to say that there isn’t a double standard.
If we won’t accept one type of person using offensive language, then we shouldn’t accept it from anyone.
According to the New York Post, Deen said she used the N-word in describing a man who held a gun to her head in a bank robbery.
“Racial slurs are not very smart or very creative,” Butler said. “If you are to have a rivalry with someone, be creative and don’t take the easy route. If you’re going to use racial slurs, you run the risk of alienating your own fans.”
It’s spreading like wildfire through multiple news sources that Deen has been dropped from the Food Network and other companies.
“A lot of us have in the past said things we have regretted saying years ago,” said Al Sharpton in the Huffington Post. “I think she has a lawsuit now about activities now whether it was discriminatory. And whether or not she’s engaged in things now. It’s not about her past. … She deserves what’s fair, but that’s based on what she’s engaged in now.”
In pondering whether Deen should be blacklisted, Bill Maher, on his show “Real Time with Bill Maher” said, “It’s just a word; it’s a wrong word; she’s wrong to use it. But do we always have to make people go away?”
Callie Parrish is a senior who double majors in mathematics and art. She can be reached at [email protected].