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Paula Deen - Portraits

It’s been one eventful week at Stitches ‘n Dishes, beginning with the Paula Deen scandal that’s left millions of Americans divided, a well-respected family devastated, a town dumbfounded, and one Deen Family friend is ready to speak out about it. When I initially heard the news about Paula Deen’s alleged use of the “n-word,” I was more than surprised – that’s not the Paula Deen I know. Then when I read the details of her sworn testimony, I was bewildered. So, I declared “Paula Deen Week” at Stitches ‘n Dishes.

Reading the document led to many hours of research and additional reading. At some points, I felt I was reading a script from a legal drama. Seeing the headlines, watching the news and talk shows, and listening to the debates on national and local radio programs was even more baffling. I collected all of the documents - the letter that Lisa Jackson wrote to Paula, thanking her and praising her and her brother, Bubba, the letter to Paula from Jackson’s attorney, demanding a hefty sum of $1.25 million to guarantee that Jackson wouldn’t tell the public what horrible people they are, and of course the complaint filed in court, as well as Paula’s attorney’s response, three depositions, a litany of letters between attorneys, and an email message from a correspondent at the National ENQUIRER.  Things weren’t adding up. The media reports were not lining up with the facts.

All of those documents – in part or in sum – paint a very different picture than the information in the media. What else would I expect from the National Enquirer? But this has gone far beyond that “publication.” Mainstream media actually reported that story.

The stories are all complete with quotes from the source documents, and in some cases, they’ve actually linked to the documents themselves. Only, none are accurate. Some were paraphrased, some were taken out of context, and still others were completely misquoted. What made matters more confusing were the apology videos – the now infamous Paula Deen apology videos. I sat, watching and asked, “what are you apologizing for?” I guess I hoped that somehow Paula would spring to life in that YouTube video, and explain to me why she felt she owed a grave apology at all.

Believe me, I’ve met with fierce debate on this topic numerous times over this week, but with each argument, I revisited the documents – the very documents that the media has repeatedly quoted and based its reporting on. Each time, the person who’d raise the debate would eventually cease fire, having been shown the evidence. Almost every time, that is. There have been a few who, regardless what I showed them would insist on their positions, say some very nasty things to me, and end by telling me I’d burn in hell. Wow.

In all of the conversations I’ve had regarding Paula Deen, there hasn’t been even one person who could oppose my opinion based on the merits of this set of documents – not one. And it’s occurred to me that very few people actually even understand what this case is about. They’ve argued with me based on what they saw on The View or jokes on late night television or an “official” CNN news report. Yet, these are the same people who accuse the media of bias and worse, lying about every other topic. I find that … perplexing.

Most people appeared to blindly either accept or vehemently deny the cruel allegations of racism in Paula Deen’s family. Several Facebook pages were created in support, and one became an overnight sensation. Today, only a week later, the page touts over 500,000 supporters and has initiated a Butter Wrappers for Paula campaign. Possibly millions of fans are placing butter wrappers into envelopes, and sending them via US mail to Food Network and partners who have severed ties with Deen in a massive, organized effort to stand up for Paula, thanks to John Schmitt, a loyal Paula Deen fan in Indianapolis.

I’ve engaged in far more positive conversations about Paula and the initial story that I wrote than negative. Many fans have expressed appreciation and gratitude for my clearing the air and validating something they had suspected all along.

Yesterday, Stitches ‘n Dishes published my story about The Bag Lady Foundation, a charitable organization that Paula launched in May. That story includes a list of sponsors and partners who have stayed the course with Paula, and those who haven’t, as well as a very impressive list of people, organizations and publications who have spoken out in support. That’s not really enough though, is it?

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The Bag Lady Foundation

The businesses – the sponsors, partners, and even Food Network – are only looking at their image. We can’t necessarily fault them for that. After all, they’ve got a great deal invested, and can’t afford the association. I read a fantastic piece by Daniel Gross at The Daily Beast that actually gives some very valid insights on this topic. That doesn’t mean that fans shouldn’t put those butter wrappers into the mail – they absolutely should. Their decisions to sever ties with Paula really have nothing to do with racism or the words the media claims that Paula spoke. It’s about the public’s perception of those media reports.

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It’s a vicious cycle, though. Media feeds a twisted and distorted story to the public – a story that intentionally lights a fire and divides groups – in the name of ratings. The public responds, and the media keeps feeding the story, until the public grows tired of it. As sponsors and partners sever ties, they have no choice but to state their position publicly which validates one side of public opinion and incites rage on the other. Media steps in to feed another dose… rinse and repeat. Eventually, the story withers away, leaving only a memory of the devastation for the public, but a lifetime of rebuilding to those put in harm’s way.

I have no doubt having worked in Corporate America for well over 20 years that each of these businesses understands every detail of the documents filed in court. They’ve all thoroughly read and reread the depositions, and they’ve had extensive discussions with their PR representatives. They’ve carefully monitored the media reports, as well as the public responses. It’s business. Their opinions are not as important as the public’s perception.

The list of really impressive names like, President Jimmy Carter or Donald Trump is great, but what about regular people? Sure, we’ve seen the exchanges on Facebook and Twitter. I’ve been involved in many of those. But, reread the paragraphs above – they’re all opinions of people who have a few things in common. Nobody’s read the documents, and they’re all forming opinions based on yellow journalism.

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Medea Hall, Savannah, Georgia

Pastor Gregory A. Tyson Sr., First Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church in Savannah, Georgia spoke out in support of Paula. He knows her. Everybody in Savannah knows Paula.

I talked to Medea Hall in Savannah yesterday. Medea’s 47 years old, and she’s lived in Savannah for almost 30 years. She’s known Paula and the family for almost 24 of those years, and she’s known Michael Groover, Paula’s husband for even longer. You can even say she’s part of the family.

Medea had been to a funeral for her friend, Theresa’s mother the night before, and Paula, Michael, the boys, and of course, Hollis were all there. She’s known her friend Theresa Fueger for just as long as she’s known the family. In fact, Medea recommended Theresa for a position at Paula Deen Enterprises many years ago. Theresa eventually moved up the ladder to become the Director of Operations.

“I was surprised to see [Paula] there, but that’s the way she is. She’s supportive that way,” Medea told me. “She looked tired, I cannot believe the absolute look of shock I saw on her.”

We talked for more than two hours, and Medea broke down several times during the call. “She was like a battered woman who’s just submissive. That’s just not her. She’s strong. She told me, ‘I can’t believe they all dropped me. They think I’m a monster.’”

tumblr_ly1xi3hWG31qiii6no1_500I asked her how she came to know Paula all those years ago. Medea has held positions in marketing and PR throughout her career. As part of her job, she would often bring catered services to meetings. She hired The Bag Lady, Paula’s first catering business to provide lunch, and loved Paula’s food. As Paula’s business grew, “we’d see Jamie and Bobby come around in their lunch truck. They were always easy on the eyes and everybody loved them,” Medea reminisced.

paula-deen-yard-signWalking around Savannah, Georgia, you can’t not be aware of the situation. People around town have posted lawn signs in their front yards in a show of support; the community is standing with Paula. “Everybody knows Paula; I’m not special. She does her own shopping. She goes to the store, and she talks to everybody,” Medea said. “When you hear someone talk bad about Paula, it’s usually someone who’s not from here; someone who doesn’t know her. This place gets into your blood and doesn’t get out. It’s a small town.”

“They don’t know her, and the genuine kind person she is,” said Azure Rountree, of Statesboro, Georgia in an interview with Meredith Ley, reporter for the local NBC affiliate. ”To me, the best part of success is what you can do for someone else. And she has set the best example of that.” Azure credits her own business to Paula’s generosity. The gift store at Lady and Son’s, Paula’s restaurant now stocks Azure’s sweet treats. She says it’s a true testament to Paula’s kindness

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Azure Rountree, of Statesboro, Georgia with Paula and Jamie

In my Wellness Wednesday article this week, I talked about Paula’s diabetes, and how stress affects blood sugar. Paula’s family and friends are standing by her, and doing all they can to keep her spirits up. ”Everybody’s supporting her and being positive; doing all they can. The family is staying on it – she hasn’t been eating well,” she said.

But the community is standing strong and showing their support. “You cannot move a car in Bubba’s parking lot from 10:00 am until 10:00 pm – it’s overrun with customers. I’m so glad to see the support,” Medea told me.

A philanthropist, Paula  spends a great deal of her time giving back to the community. Medea said, “This whole racial thing is what’s so stunning…” (a long pause) “…I’m at a loss for words. I just don’t understand it. That’s not – that’s just not her. It’s so ironic that she’s being persecuted for the things she’s fought for. She’s done so much for race relations here. I don’t think anyone’s even read the deposition.”

Sonny Dixon, a local newscaster on a CBS affiliate spoke out on the air in defense of Paula Deen. “He really stood up for her,” Medea recalled. “But you don’t need anybody to tell you what a great person she is. She’s not gonna come out and tell the public what she’s done for people – it’s ludicrous. I can’t even think of the words… at the end of the day, this isn’t even about her, but you don’t hear anything about the lawsuit.”

I think there is still a common misconception about the South, the racial divide, and the N-word.

“Nobody can believe this. I’m 47 and originally from Atlanta,” Medea said, “You just wouldn’t hear the word. You just didn’t hear it. Moving from Atlanta – the racial tension there is twenty-times worse than Savannah. Our mayor is a black female, and there’s been a transition here. To walk into any party or social situation in this area – and i mean Savannah – it’s not a word that’s said. People think we walk around saying the word, or we hate gays, and Indians or whatever. We’re not like that. You just don’t hear the word. It’s not a word that you tell your kids, ‘we don’t say that word’ because we just don’t say that word to begin with.”

What’s to happen next for Paula Deen is still unknown – I don’t think even she knows the answer to that question yet. One thing is for certain, it will play out and when the story is bled dry, it will fade away. While sponsors and partners may sever ties, and the story may fade away, Paula Deen will persevere and move onward as she always has. She is, and always will be an inspiration and a legend.

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About the Author

Chris Ford is the founder of Stitches 'n Dishes and editor in chief with a passion for food, photography and travel. Chris is a Media Correspondent for the Food Network TV show, Eat St, a syndicated blogger, seasoned event organizer and promoter, a food critic, a marketing consultant and Social Media Marketing expert. Chris is also a fashion and entertainment photographer. When he's not dining on the sidewalk, he's snapping photos on the catwalk.

  • Valerie Ferrara-Ryan

    wonderful article – I am in tears for her and her family – Paula stay strong – something wonderful is waiting for you!

  • RDopson

    Fantastic article. Thank you !!

  • Anna

    Excellent article. I support Paula Deen 100%. I am so worried about her health…you are right stress does not treat people well. I would love to giver her and her family a big hug.

  • Adrian Solomon

    Why on earth rip a good person to shreds for telling the truth? Why is this example of real racists not being covered be the media? A mans life is on the line here. God bless Paula Deen for all the good she and her family have done. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lylp0paYRFI

  • Vonnie Wilford

    So glad to see one of her many friends speak out in her defense! These sponsors are like rats leaving a sinking ship – only Paula’s not sinking! I hope people will boycott any of the businesses who have dropped her, and I hope it hurts their “bottom line.” Shame on them! The suit was brought by a white woman against Paula’s brother Bubba for sexual harassment! How did it get to be about Paula being a racist? You can thank the liberal media, who will use ANY news item to get America’s attention off of Obama and all his scandals! Why is this more important than Benghazi and the cover-up there, or the IRS scandal, or the phone surveillance?? Because our esteemed administration is at the bottom of these things.

  • Marsha Scarbrough

    Thank you so much. I have been discouraged greatly because of what the press is doing to her, she is a shining example of strength to us all. If Paula can stand strong we all can!!!

  • Pinky5712

    I wish the media would just stop.I have now and always admired Paula for the simple fact that she set her sights on something and worked hard and made it.She is a true inspiration to all that adore her. I believe that she will come back stronger than ever when all this BS dies down.

  • Tocious

    Thank you so much for your insights. I too have read all the depositions, the letters, etc. and am still supporting Paula Deen. I will boycott with my $ which is the only means available to me all companies who have distanced themselves from Paula and will seek out and reward those companies that stick with her with my purchasing power. When these companies start seeing their sales, profits dwindle, perhaps they will reconsider. It is the American way.

  • Harriet Bragg Tate

    Thank you so much for this article. n But as we say in south Ga, you are definitely “preaching to the choir”!!!!! I was born and still live here in Albany, Paula’s home town. We all love Paula and we are praying for her and her family. I KNOW she will survive and be even better for all this. We can all pray and spread the good word!!!

  • Dana Toy

    thank you so much for this! Please tell Paula that in no way shape or form do we think she is a monster, we love our Paula and the kind, loving, giving woman we know she is! It is truly wrong how people love to see people that have worked so hard and give so much go through something like this. We love you Paula and all you have done and one day do again, keep your head held high amazing lady!!!

  • Pamela Lloyd

    Wow! Thank you for taking the time to write such a moving and caring article. You protrayed her just like I think she is in my mind. A reflection of myself – if only I had chosen the other road – but God had plans for me just as He still does for Paula. I hope this is all cleared up and make ups done quickly. I know that good will win this time! When folks go accepting folks – is when folks start getting along based on the folks right now. I’ll miss the daily visit – sometimes more than once! I’ll just turn the TV off and go read a cookbook! I hope Ms Deens fans don’t fade away or give in to the presurre of extra time needed to continue the committed boycotts. A little inconvenice for me is nothing compared to that of what Ms. Deen is going thru! To say nothing about the 100s -maybe even 1000s that will loose thier jobs over the knee-jerk politically correct reaction by folks who only considered thier pockets! May God protect us all and thank God he is the final judge! Best wishes from Texas

  • Teri McMillion

    What is going on here? It seems as if it is a reason to create chaos so we are distracted. I wonder what is next.

    But I support Paula!

    By the way I own Paula’s cookware set and it is the best pots and pans I have ever owned! They are still as new as the day I opened the box! They do not get blackened on the outside from the heat! Oh, they were bought from a certain store……

  • Suzie Humphrey Elkins

    Great Article….I support Paula Deen all the way. Paula Do NOT let this destroy you, you are a strong person and you are going to come out on top! We love you…..

  • Patrick Conkright Larry Ripley

    Thank you for sharing such a wealth of info for us!

  • Ladyjames123

    I thought I was going crazy! I have researched and read the documents and could not, for the life of me, figure out the outcry! The only legitimate concern should be what is happening in court…and it should stay there until there is either a conviction or dismissal. Some America…innocent until proven guilty unless you are Paula Deen.

  • Jay Dyer

    Thank you for this article! You said something which was my very first thought upon hearing about this; Paula really does not owe anyone an apology. I felt as you expressed, Paula just hold your head up and move on. You are a winner. With God, your family and your supporters by your side something great is in store for you. Just focus on the blessings you do have and all of this craziness will pale in comparison. I also applaude the letter from Vonnie Wilford. You “hit the nail on the head”. That’s exactly what this is all about. All the negativity in this country filters down from the top.

  • Donna Reed Smith

    Paula needs to start her own Food Network.. see how many people fiollow her and leave Food Network channel.. boycott walmart..kmart and all others who deem to pull her products off their shelf.. I as many others have said the same words as she did..let start doing something to those like Lil Wayne who stomp on the American Flag… funny how that gets over looked. I SUPPORT PAULA 110%. You will come out this stonger than ever… some one is just trying to get some of her butter money!! Bottom line right there ya’ll!!

  • galet09

    Thank you Chris! Wonderful article which uplifted me. I’ve been said for a week now. Not watching the FN anymore. I just can’t support hyocrites. But how I feel now isn’t the real issue. It’s how Paula feels. I know that she is a strong woman, most Southern women are. She will get through this. Thank you for publishing a great informative, truthful article! God Bless you!

  • Gene Dexter

    Trying to see both sides as I don’t know a thing about what really happened and I appreciate your research, and am taking your word for it how you did look into documents. However, links and infographic proving your points would have been compelling. I’m sure Ms. Deen is a nice person, but what exactly was taken out of context in transcripts? Where exactly can we find examples of media distortion vs. the truth? Perhaps we’ll learn more from a publication such as Vanity Fair, as this post doesn’t really present a good defense. In fact, for those of us in the west, it supports the idea that the south has its own set of rules and hasn’t yet caught up with the idea that most of us outside of, say, rap music circles, find use of certain words disgusting and inappropriate, no matter how wonderful a work environment or interpersonal relationship seems to be.

    And yes, an apology video for something Ms. Deen didn’t do? A huge mistake. Perhaps her own Stand Your Ground strategy would have kept some of the wolves at bay. I for one am under the impression that Ms. Deen and her PR team are clueless as to how that appeared to open minded but confused people like me. It may go down as a a Tammy Fay viral, but is it the truth?

    • http://www.stitchesndishes.com/ StitchesnDishes

      Hey Gene, thanks for the comments. This post is the last of a series. The other posts are linked throughout. The documents I refer to are linked to those stories where they were discussed, but you make a good point. I’ll add the links to the documents here, as well.

      The first article that I wrote looks at the testimonies of all parties and what was actually said. http://stitchesndishes.com/2013/06/media-was-wrong-will-food-network-take-paula-deen-back/

      I completely agree – she’s taken the wrong approach, and it’s landed her in some hot water. She needs expert PR representation to help her get through it now.

      I’ve lived in California for a very long time – everywhere from Sacramento to Chula Vista, and currently in Ventura County. I’m one of the open-minded in the West who’s curious about both sides of an argument. I was curious enough to spend multiple days reading through all of the depositions, the letters, and the complaint.

      Take a look at the first article. I think it answers your question – you might find yourself as embarrassed and ashamed of journalists as I was.

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  • Cathy Howard

    Paula you have to watch yourself right now been a diabetic,which I am too a diabetic and stress is a no no….keep your head high and good thing are coming your way..Love ya…I’m from Troy,Alabama…If you are ever down this way I would love to meet ya…

  • kathy

    I am 100% behind Paula Deen and her family, I have stopped watching Foodnetwork because they have dropped her and won’t resign her contract, I enjoy many of the cooks on there and I will not be watching them neither. Those other cooks should stand up for Paula too, and if they don’t than they should all be dropped too. I know other people and even the presdent has use the n word in their lives too in their life time. I am behind Paula.

  • Steve Elder

    Howdy from Texas,

    Thanks Chris, Its good to read something nice about Paula! She might not be able to fight back but by George I can and will! I been monitoring social networks and confronting the lies with facts and been unrelenting in my cause! I don’t personally know Paula but hope to meet her one day. I hate folks who think they are better than others, you know those who put them selves on a pedestal looking down on you, & I have found plenty crawling out of the woodwork like cockroaches in a feeding frenzy!!
    Paula if your reading this hun keep your head held tall don’t let them keep you down you are more loved now than ever before, you know GOD works in mysterious ways and has his hand on you this happened for a reason and your going to be better for it not worse! Now how about you hop onto your Facebook page and get us some of your 4th of July recipes!!!

    • http://www.stitchesndishes.com/ StitchesnDishes

      Thanks Steve! I know that Paula’s seen the amazing outcry from supporters here, on the Stitches ‘n Dishes Facebook page and the Paula Deen support pages on Facebook, and it means the world to her.

      Keep showing your support. She’ll get through this, and I’m sure we’ll see her on the air and in stores everywhere again.

  • http://www.stitchesndishes.com/ StitchesnDishes

    Thanks for putting it all together in one place! I’ve got the documents uploaded here on the site, and linked throughout several articles, but I don’t have a single compilation on one blog post. I thought about doing that, but haven’t had the time to put one together. Thank you!

    • Raye Terry

      Ive been a supporter of Paula for over 30yrs. eaten at Lady&Sons, wonderful food. I love you Paula, hold you head high, everyone has said something in their lifetime, they did not treat you right. You have my support 110% . I will no longer support FoodTV. Take care , you are in my prayers. Love you. Raye Terry

  • Micaylah na Clan fra Skye

    I support Paula 100%. The media should be ashamed of themselves for preying on her the way they have. After much research, the Food Network has so many skeletons in it’s own closet that she is probably better off rid of them. She’s too classy a person to be involved with trash like that. I support her completely and hope her spirits stay high knowing that there are so many folks out there that do support her.

  • Karen Dunne

    Thank you for this article. I am just sick of the torment that has been done toward Paula. I support her and stand behine her 100%

  • jazliz

    I drove up to the church I used to go to years ago. On their message board was “Casting stone at Paula Deen?” Better read John 8:7.

  • Patricia Newnum Bunger

    I would like to thank you for sharing this with us and I for one am standing strong for Paula Deen. I just loved to watch her show on Food Network as well as others but will no longer watch that station. As a matter of fact I have locked it out so NO ONE CAN WATCH IT on my TV. Stay strong Paula you will overcome this and be stronger because of it. Your true fans are behind you. THANK YOU FOR ALL THAT YOU HAVE DONE AND ARE DOING…..

  • Nina Osborn Jackson

    Thank you so much. That is the Paula I know and so many others now. Paula will be blessed for her honesty and the ones that have dropped her will regret it. I pray for Paula everyday to have strength, rest and encouragement to move forward. Paula stay strong there is more for you than against you. You are and have been a blessing to so many people. Standing with you as always!!!!!!!

  • Echo Moon

    Great article, thank you so very much for writing it.
    Having not been a fan of Paula Deen and having never watched her show it surprises my friends that I have been supporting and championing Paula. But while not having been a fan I am a fan of fairness and justice. And that is something that is so sadly missing in all of this. I have done a letter writing campaign to the businesses that have dropped Paula and her products. I have posted the links to letters and depositions to as many negative comments and online stories as I have come across. The butter wrapper idea is great, but I don’t buy butter. So I am mailing multiple copies of all of my shopping receipts from this past week, receipts from stores who have not dropped Paula, to the stores who have. I want to give them paper proof of my boycotts.
    I hope with all my heart that Paula gets beyond all of this. And from what I’ve been reading, that she is a strong woman and of course has family and many, many great fans behind her? I believe that she will. You just can’t keep a truly great spirit down.

  • Pasche Everett

    Thank you for writing this. Unfortunately, in this day and time, the media can be a monster. What I don’t understand is, what gives them the right to do so. If they don’t like you, you are ridiculed and raked over the coals. It’s quite a shame, as people from the South are the friendliest people and would move heaven and earth for someone in need regardless of skin color.

  • Annalisa Bleil

    Its nice to see the support Paula Deen has. Its also wonderful to see someone explain to everyone the effects of journalism in our society and how things get twisted. Just because its on TV or in the news either printed or on video, doesn’t make it correct. People take the media as if its gospel and lives get destroyed for someones elses fame or glory. Its so sad that we allow the media to dictate to us, who the good guys are and who the bad guys are… The media is mostly just the opinion of someone, not always the truth. God Bless Paula Deen and all the good she has done, she will survive this and become stronger for it. I hope I can one day be the pillar that she is.

  • Cathy Elmore Gaylord

    Glad you spoke out. Imagine someone sends Paula a letter demanding money to be quite is against the law. Why then has Paula been on trial. Am prying for her and her family. By the way I went in Walmart yesterday to get a Paula Deen Frying pan and quess what everything Paula Denn and been bought out. So I walked out of the store thinking yea people are still supporting Paula.

  • Debbie Sosebee Letson Wherry

    Debbie here from Texas…what a change from the last few days…a nice article about Paula. You don’t have to know Paula personally to tell she’s a genuinely nice person. Just want her to know she has support from her Texas friends as well. Keep your head up sweet girl and know that for every door that closes…two doors will open.

  • Eva Foster

    I wish other chefs from the Food Network would come out in support for her, just they remain silent. Their silence speaks volumes. To them the bottom line is all that matters.

  • Carolyn Timmerman

    Great words! Something to stuff down Matt Lauer’s gullet! It bothers me that voices who are supposed to carry weight put a personal spin on what should be unbiased reporting/interviews. Lauer is a perfect example of yellow journalism, & I guess he thought he was giving a great “exposé”. I support Paula Deen & her family. And I don’t miss a bit dropping Food Network, WalMart, Target, Sears…I can find other places to spend my money!

  • flowr1

    Thank you so much for posting this and as I do believe inPaula and will for as long as it takes.. Love Paula!!!

  • Brandy

    Wonderfully written.

  • Mary G

    Excellent article, It is a sad state of affairs today that there is so much prejudice and hatred and lack of good judgment that when a person stands up and tells the truth she suddenly becomes the judged one for all the wrongs that have been going on for years. She didn’t say anything that all of us has said at one time or another. We have entertainers that think nothing of using the same language that our children hear on a daily basis and yet they are held up a total different set of standards and these are the same people who our children and grandchildren are looking at as role models. If change and accountability is going to be made it has to happen with everyone not just a select few no matter what race you are. Paula is a role model and there are few in this country today. She is loyal, giving, loving, honest and forgiving, attributes we should aspire to achieve.

  • Brenda Roberson

    I enjoyed your article on Paula. I also live in Georgia and have loved Paula and her family from the very start of her business. I will always stand strong for Paula. I will no longer buy from any of the company’s that have dropped her. Paula Deen is not a racist in any way. This whole thing is about greed.

  • Lakeladybsc

    I have never met Paula, but I know her from reading her memoir. She told her whole story in “It Ain’t All About the Cookin”. She did not hang back. She told it all in a way that really introduces her to everyone. What a great person. She will come back on top. She always has.

  • Cathy Robbins

    I would like to Paula just move on … Her future is with her good heart and fans … so feed us girl !!! Open restaurants everywhere … sell your wares in the storefront … become a part of the community…. and quit apologizing. Enough is enough. Fry on Paula, fry on …. and butter up.

  • http://www.stitchesndishes.com/ StitchesnDishes

    I’m glad to see people taking the time to read the documents in order to really understand what he nature of the complaint is and what Paula Deen was actually accused of. And you’re right, plantation weddings are very common and have nothing to do with racism.

  • Georganne Baker

    Great article…I feel that the more positive & “real,honest” commentary that is posted, people will see the fine lady Paula like we do!! Love & support her,always

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  • Lynne Holcomb

    It is so great to finally have some one speak out for Paula. All of us who have followed her and her famiy, totally believe in her. She is my hero and still is. She is in my prayers daily and I know God will get her through this. I do worry about her health as I know that stress can take great toll on a person. Everyone forgets what brought all this bull about to begin with and that was a person trying to blackmail Paula. Paula, you stood your ground and even if it feels like all is going down hill, it will all come back and you will even be stronger then ever. You have amazing family, friends and fans. All of my friend know if I could meet one person, it would be YOU. One thing about the Food Network, which I no longer watch, you now know who your friends are. Michael Simon is the only one who I have heard pubically come out and say what a nice person you are and that he considered you his friend.
    Have a blessed day and keep the faith.