Paula Deen’s deposition set the Internet on fire yesterday, which is probably to be expected from any legal document in which a famous white person responds to a question about whether he or she has ever used the N-word with “of course.” Today, her company, Paula Deen Enterprises, put out a statement that attempts to throw a little water on the situation with what basically amounts to the “grandma doesn’t know any better, honey” defense.
“During a deposition where she swore to tell the truth, Ms. Deen recounted having used a racial epithet in the past, speaking largely about a time in American history which was quite different than today,” the statement reads. “[Paula] was born 60 years ago when America’s South had schools that were segregated, different bathrooms, different restaurants and Americans rode in different parts of the bus. This is not today.”
You know when it also wasn’t, though? 1986, which TMZ notes is the year Paula admitted to using the word after “a black man burst into the bank that I was working at and put a gun to my head.” So, there’s that. And while the statement does go on to say that she “does not find acceptable the use of this term under any circumstance by anyone nor condone any form of racism or discrimination,” The Daily Beast points out that in the deposition she said it would probably be okay to use it in jokes or when repeating a conversation between black people in the kitchen. So, there’s that, too.
Don’t say the N-word. That’s what I’m getting at.
Photo credit: Shutterstock/kai hecker