The more I think about it, the more I say I had a knee-jerk reaction about Paula Deen. That’s it, we are not going to her restaurant when we go to Savannah this summer! I will not support her!
But after being inundated with Paula updates in the news and seeing her interview with Matt Lauer, I’ve changed my mind. Yes, it was very, very wrong of her to use the N-word. And she knows that, owns that, and has apologized for it. She’s embarrassed by her actions. Frankly, I don’t think she’s that good of an actress—I think she truly meant what she said.
After watching the interview on The Today Show, I said to Andy, They can take away all the endorsements they want—she’s going to be just fine. In fact probably better than fine. ”
He paused to look at me. We then began to make a mental list of all the famous people who had erred and were forgiven, and basically the mishap was forgotten and they came back better and stronger and more popular than ever:
Robert Downey, Jr.
That’s just the short list. We are fickle people.
So rather than just drop her and dismiss her, I wish she could have a meaningful consequence. She should pay a hefty fine to the NAACP or the United Negro College Fund. Or do a PSA about hurting people with words. She should show her remorse by doing community service—she’s a cook, she should prepare food for her local soup kitchen—and not just once, and not with a TV crew filming it! I just think there is a more productive way for her to be repentant.
She’ll be back in a year with a new line of cookware, or a cookbook (Eating Crow?), or a sauce…and people will be buying it. Heck, Oprah will probably be endorsing it.