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Paula Deen Attempts Image Clean Up On "Today Show", HIRES Judy Smith For DAMAGE CONTROL + Ciara Defends The "N" Word -- "We Can Have Fun About It"

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Paula Deen, who recently hired crisis manager Judy Smith, appeared on TODAY this morning where she admitted to using the "N" word once decades ago and maintained that she's not a racist. Watch the clip inside and see why pop singer Ciara says "N" word usage is about context and you can have "fun" with it.....

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Though she bailed on last week's interview, following her firing from the FOOD Network and several embarrassing online videos, Paula Deen sat down for a somewhat tearful (no tears fell but she played the part well) interview on TODAY where she admitted to using the "N" word once, "a world ago" and added,

"If there's anyone out there that has never said something that they wish they could take back, then please pick up that stone and throw it at my head…and hit me as hard as you can."

She also discussed her childhood, saying,   

"I believe that every one of God's creatures was created equal, no matter what church you go to pray. I believe that everyone should be treated equal, and that's the way I was raised.

I am here today because I want people to know who I am, and people that have worked beside me, have walked beside, know what kind of person I am."

And when asked specifically about the "plantation" wedding and other stories, Paula insinuated that there are many lies being told about her and who she really is.  Well, the plantation dinner party you said would be "cute" because of the black men & women who would play slaves....was indeed in the deposition.  So it wasn't a lie.

Here are the rest of the highlights: 

On being fired and dropped by several partners:

"Would I have fired me? Knowing me? No," she said. "I am so very thankful for the partners I have who believe in me."

On if she knew that the "N" word was offensive to Black people:

"I don’t know, I have asked myself that so many times," Deen said. "I go into my kitchens and hear what these young people are calling each other...it’s very distressing for me. I think for this problem to be worked on these young people are gonna have to take control and start showing respect for each other."

It seems Paula...and many others..don't realize that the issue most people have isn't necessarily the "N-word" usage from 20+ years ago.  It's everything she's said since 2011 that's been caught on video and in writing.  Saying that a plantation party with slaves would be cute and talking about your "dear black friend" by calling him on stage during an interview to make fun of how black his color is....do make you a racist in most people's eyes.  You don't have to rock a white hood or burn crosses in people's lawns to be a "racist."  Insensitivity is just as insulting. 

 

Unfortunately, it doesn't seem Paula understands this.  But she's clearly being "talked" to as the NY Post reports that she's hired Judy Smith, the crisis expert who inspired "Scandal", to guide her through through this debacle.  And Judy's help will be needed as many companies are continuously cutting their ties to Paula.  Most recently, Ceasars Entertainment (who operated four Paula Deen Buffet properties in their casinos) released a statement saying the company "reached an agreement with Paula Deen Enterprises not to renew the business relationship."  We'll stayed tuned to see how this works out...

Watch the interview here:

 

And singer Ciara also weighed in on the "N" word....

Singer Ciara dropped by "Access Hollywood Live" yesterday to discuss her upcoming "I'm Out" video with Nicki Minaj, and also to weigh in on one of the most talked about topics in the country, Paula Deen's sh*tstorm.  Host Billy Bush asked Cici how she felt about the word and she said

"As an entertainer you have fun and it’s all about the context it’s used in. I am an African-American woman, so I can identify with that word in different ways,

It’s all about the context and in my case I know I can have fun because I know where I’m coming from with it. You have to be light-hearted and it has to be in a certain way. I cannot hear another person of another race saying, ‘you this’ like ‘you that.’ Again, it’s all about how you say it and what context it’s used in.

That word has as much power as you give it.

“That word is so old that it references the context of where it comes from. I want to make sure I’m clear about that, it doesn’t mean that same thing that it could have meant years ago, especially when we can have fun about it.”

Hmmm.....We understand where Ciara is coming from (based on her age and whimsical way of speaking about things) but we're sure there are still thousands of older Blacks in America who would take issue with her saying you can "have fun about it."  She should ask someone who marched for equal rights and to be treated as an equal human being about "having fun" with it....

 

SPEAK ON IT....where do you stand on using the "N" word?  And also Paula's actions SINCE the fallout?

 

Photos via NBC News/Access Hollywood/Splash News

Comments

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When someone uses a word that

When someone uses a word that has over 500years of pain in a hurtful way THAT IS NOT ACCEPTABLE | African American people today are able to take the hurt out of the word and use it in a different manner | If your blood line has never sufferer for a word/phase/or action for as long as the African Americans community has, you have no idea how hurtful this word is and that you will never be able to compare to the hurt people has experienced from this word | So F" Paula Deen for being so ignorant!

Ciara...this is precisely why

Ciara...this is precisely why I don't like you. Seriously. You have a natiowide-multimillions viewer platform, and your defense of the use of the N word is 'context'?? Well I'm sure Paula Deen was using it in the right "context" and therefore she should be forgiven. What people like Ciara and most black people, need to realize is that if we can use it, so can they. That simple. You can't ban a word for use from a certain group of people. There is no law supporting that. If it's a racially insensitive word when white people use it, then it should be racially insensitive when blacks use it as well. Most educated, respected black people don't use that word. I was not raised in a household where the N word was permitted. I used it once and my mom said, " I don't ever want to hear you say that again!" I mean come on, when slaves where saying the N word in the 1800's to other slaves, it was in a demeaning way. Usually the "uncle tom negroes" were the ones using it to control other slaves on behalf of their white master. Slaves didn't go home to other slave quarters and get called the N word by other slaves. It just didn't happen, of course until the brainwashing that took place in the 1900's. It's time for a cancellation of this word in use in the black community. Why can't it just be replaced with the word brother? Why do blacks insist on using this word? I'm sorry but Paula Deen has a point. If blacks continue to demean, and undermine themselves, why does that stop anyone else from doing it. Change starts with yourself.
Supermodel01's picture

For the record I don't think

For the record I don't think Paula Deen is racist just ignorant. She said on live television, "I is what I is," most white people who hate and look down on black people don't talk like that ijs. She admitted to saying the word because she didn't see a problem in it, she's one of those thinks she's "down" white folks. And you can blame black people who call white people their niggas for making white people like her think it's ok to say it. Ciara is ignorant but then again look at who she's dating...
Crazy Sexy Cool's picture

Paula didn't need Judy Smith.

Paula didn't need Judy Smith. She should have just come to me and I would have worked out the ideal solution to her current dilemma. It's quite simple actually, all she needs is to have Beyonce and Jay Z become her friends. Then!!! she would be given a 'pass' for using that word! It's quite simple, just ask Gwyneth!
Syberiah's picture

In general, I find Ciara to

In general, I find Ciara to be phoney and quite ignorant.
star's picture

K-Mart and Sears are thinking

K-Mart and Sears are thinking about what to do with their contract with Paula. Advanced sales of her latest cookbook are up 1000% according to ABC News. It appears that her fans/supporters are buying her cookbooks since she is losing deals with other partners.
Keep_It_100's picture

Walmart just severed ties

Walmart just severed ties with Paula Deen. I know her deal with them was worth big $$$.
Keep_It_100's picture

How typical of a white woman

How typical of a white woman to still blame someone else for her own free willed actions. Unreal. She still hasn't learned from this situation. She's not owning what she did nor taking responsibility. Paula, you are worthy of forgiveness but we can't forgive you at this time. An adult, elderly woman is blaming teens that she hired for her actions. You have a long road ahead until you accept accountability SMMFH
KENNEDY78's picture

did ya'll hear that paula is

did ya'll hear that paula is now claiming rev. jesse jackson is supporting her?
wildlife's picture

WOW Paula still doesn't get

WOW Paula still doesn't get it, she's not learned a thing. She's blaming her staff for why SHE called them niggers and also created a hostile work environment? Really Paula? Its not just your use of the N word but also showing porn during work hours while your employees are present. The civil war themed wedding with little nigger boys in bow ties? You said a lot of hurtful things.....
KENNEDY78's picture

CIARA PUT SOME CLOTHES ON

CIARA PUT SOME CLOTHES ON YOUR BEHIND AND STOP LOOKIN SO NEEDY
miSSyCatsss's picture

Ciara's attitude shows what a

Ciara's attitude shows what a lot of young people think unfortunately. They have completely distanced themselves from anything related to racism or civil rights. Paula needs to get herself together and sit down somewhere for a while.
chaka1's picture

Will these sliding scale ass

Will these sliding scale ass celebrities PLEASE stop weighing in on this scandal, it will NOT pump any air into their deflated stauses. On top of that your opinions are so fucking backwards becaue she didn't just say the N word (lmao) a few times, fucking idiots. As usual though the slaves are gonna defend their master so i digress......

Ciara dear, you need a

Ciara dear, you need a publicist. Please don't speak on matters other than your CD - you are not qualified.
Keep_It_100's picture

Oh! I forgot to comment about

Oh! I forgot to comment about you Ciara. Put it like this! You sound ignorant and you are as wack as that hair your rocking, and the album you keep trying to promote that you have pushed the release date back like 3 times. You need more education and a new PR rep hun. You would have been better off pleading the 5th on this interview. SMH!

Paula got caught saying with

Paula got caught saying with MOST white people say behind closed doors, plain and simple. She is now afraid of losing $$$ in endorsements and QVC sales. There is no sincerity behind her shallow words. If you say something negative about the 'gays' they will shut down any establishment. It goes without saying that 'mainstream' America thinks that they can say anything about blacks and it's okay because we will still patronized their businesses and keep their pockets fat. Paula is all about damage control ONLY! Don't be fooled by the crocodile tears.
Keep_It_100's picture

Ciara is ignorant of the

Ciara is ignorant of the FACT. I'm disgusted of the "excuse" to use the "N" word.
Shawday Whitney's picture

Im 32 year old black woman

Im 32 year old black woman and I have never used the N word or felt the need to.

Ciara needs to just shut the

Ciara needs to just shut the hell up. She sounds dumb. And no love loss with me and Paula. Her show annoyed the shit out of me. Everything she cooks involves 2 damn sticks of butter.
ACTS's picture

Maybe we are losing our

Maybe we are losing our rights because when we had them, we didn't appreciate them. When Blacks were living under Jim Crow laws, we fought hard to prove to America that we were equal. Yet, when GOD bless us with the Civil Righs Bills , Jim Crow deemed illegal, doors were opened; what did we do with this blessing. We took the word nigger, and made it a slang term; used as an term of endearment, and justified it. How can anyone justify using a word ,in which it was used to enslave, rape,I guess people who use the word didn't see Emitt Till's body in that casket, didn't see black folks being burned and hung at stakes, didn't see cross burnings on lawns, didn't see black children dead on the street outside of a burned church. People who use the word nigga as endearment didn't see young blacks their age being attacked with water hoses, and bitten by dogs, The same word nigger , nigga was used as a sign outside of a cage in which an African man was living inside of a human zoo, where whites would look at him as an exhibit, or when the Hottentot Venus was put on display so white could marvel at the anatomy of the black woman. Or when Evolution scientist would compare the human brain size which reflected the human intelligence, and used an ape's skull to say that blacks were inferior because their brain size was smaller than other humans. I guess the word nigger meant nothing when Aborigines in Australia were being killed,children separated and givent to childless white couples, or the fact that Aborigines weren't considered humans until the 1985. You cannot justify using that word by any means, The word will always carry that sting, and no matter how you young folks try to use it as a slang term to erase the painful past , it will always be there. When anyone justify that word, it proves that we are so lost that maybe we are losing our rights in this country because we lost our dignity and pride,and we are being taught a lesson.

Ciara, STFU! You are NO

Ciara, STFU! You are NO expert in race relations. Paula Deen, Natasha is right. You used "niggers" to describe the type of blacks you want at a plantation wedding!!!!! Like wtf? I swear this was 2013 and not 1845.
sayitlikeyoumeanit's picture

F throwing stones Paula, u

F throwing stones Paula, u need a few pellets pent in dat ole' wrinkled azz! Tehe Matt went in and didn't fall for the horrible acting either...Now she can say Toodles to Qvc too! This lying Bat def needs more people cuz the ones who supposedly "know her" gotta be just as IGNANT!! Smh..*sips mimosa
Like Really's picture

Kudos to Matt. And pass me

Kudos to Matt. And pass me some mimosa.
Ethel Mertz's picture

Paul Deen, please go have

Paul Deen, please go have several seats. Black people do not use the *N* word like you do. Your meaning is very different from ours. Black people use it as a slang or term of endearment. You use it as a weapon, form of hate, and belittlement. Go have a seat, Ms #DammitIGotCaught!

Just because i call my sister

Just because i call my sister a bitch, don't mean you can too--YOU AINT FAMILY.
48DDs's picture

NOBODY should use the damn

NOBODY should use the damn word. Our younger generation is so out of touch with what their grandparents went through for them to act a fool on a freaking television show! Girl, shut up! Paula Deen should be stuffed with sausage and put on a roaster, fat pig.
JewelryLover's picture

That’s the problem there is a

That’s the problem there is a gap between the younger generations that don’t know and the older generations that do know. The younger generations think they can use it because they are Black when most don’t know the half about being black in this country. The get a poor excuse for Black american history in schools so they don’t know the weight of what goes along with it. Seems like now everyone has a very short memory though. If they really knew their history they would never use it and go ballistic on anyone that uses it to define or refer to them.
Mouse's picture

doesnt matter how you feel

doesnt matter how you feel about any particular word if you are still doing NIGGA shit. ppl think they get points for using variations or synonyms of the word. doesnt matter what you are called, what matters is what you ARE and what you do. as for the "older generation of blacks"--where do you think this generation got it from? my grandmother marched on washington with Dr. King but if a nigga is a nigga she will call him a nigga in 3.2 seconds flat. nigga, please.
AyButta's picture

The best way for Black people

The best way for Black people to handle this is to shut down every sponsor (for instance, Smithfield who makes bacon, ham and other meat products) down by NOT PURCHASING ANY OF THEIR PRODUCTS! Paula got fired b/c the network knows our buying POWER. Everybody knows it but us! We have the power to shut any and every ignorant piece of scum out there down! And Ciara, girl sit down, please don't speak. And I need ALL OF YOU TO READ BRAINWASHED BY TOM BURRELL, and I promise you, you'll understand what these folks have done to us and most importantly HOW they did it!!! And continue to do it. It's a brilliant plan that's been going on for hundreds of years so of course at this point it has driven a LOT of us insane...our consciousness is shut down b/c we've been programmed. We need to deprogram and reprogram but you MUST understand how they did it so you can undo it. Also, please watch Hidden Colors 1 & 2 and listen to Dr John Henrik Clarke's lecture on "image making emotion." It's EXCEPTIONAL. These ppl are on the golf courses, in board rooms, behind closed doors thinking and strategizing against YOU and you just react to everything they throw at you without applying critical thinking or common sense
Reign's picture

Maybe Ciara should meet Rep.

Maybe Ciara should meet Rep. John Lewis. 'Nuff said.
YBFFan35's picture

Ain't that the truth! People

Ain't that the truth! People like John Lewis, Dr. King and Medgar Evers died so we wouldn't have to listen to this word and some of our own brothers and sisters want us to embrace it. Does any other race embrace a racial slur about them? Ciara needs to rethink this.
Always thinking's picture

Ironically, Paula Deen is the

Ironically, Paula Deen is the nigger here. Fuck her and fuck her artery clogging butter.
Ethel Mertz's picture

The complicated context of

The complicated context of the "N" word. Paula Deen is a ni**a, for using the word ni**a, and trying squash some ni**a shit with a ni**a bullshit apology. Talking about it distressing her when young county ni**as in her kitchens call each other ni**as in conversation in front of her --which she feel gives wack ass ni**as a reason to use that word ni**a when they ain’t ni**as. She ain’t my ni**a, but I can be a ni**a to her. Ni**a, if you understood what I just spit, then you a real ni**a and not some fake ass ni**a.
RustyCorliss's picture

hahaahaaaa!!! yaaaas

hahaahaaaa!!! yaaaas
litebrite's picture

Ha! Thank you.

Ha! Thank you.
Ethel Mertz's picture

Ciara sounds like a damn

Ciara sounds like a damn fool! Once celebrities live in LA for a cool five minutes, their brain cells dissipate. What she said made no sense at all.
jdotty's picture

Can't have a united front if

Can't have a united front if there is confusion in the ranks. If we don't stop saying it they won't and our "outrage" won't be taken seriously that's why all these public figures who do say it come out better than ever with a slap on the wrist.
Mouse's picture

100% Ditto

100% Ditto
Jesus H. Christ's picture

Losing big money will make

Losing big money will make you cry alright but I think its time to just shut-up!
BigJohn's picture

The fact that Paula threw the

The fact that Paula threw the responsibility back on young blacks to not use the word was the point where I realized that she will never get it. Blacks didn't CREATE the word. The word was created to describe slaves. It's demeaning and meant as an insult when coming from a white person and I'm going to go out on a limb and say she's a smart woman so she knows that! As for Ciara, why are they even talking to her? Just don't.
PacificGirl's picture

paula saying she only used

paula saying she only used the word once? LMAO. i hope ALL of her partners dropped her!
wildlife's picture

Yeah I hope they drop her

Yeah I hope they drop her too. Saggin ass cracker. p.s. why did they lock me out of my BEEMA SUX DIX account?
Ethel Mertz's picture

probably because your name

probably because your name was Beema Sux Dix....lol
AyButta's picture

lmao!!! no i doubt it.....cuz

lmao!!! no i doubt it.....cuz i had that account for a loooooong while.
Ethel Mertz's picture

Ciara just like Kelly out

Ciara just like Kelly out and about promoting her CD and jsut like Kelly it will not do big sales, another FLOP!!!
sweetpea1989's picture

What does that have to do

What does that have to do with the use of the N word? Why come here and be so negative? SMDH
Its Me's picture

Paula is doing damage

Paula is doing damage control to save her brand, reputaion etc so she will say and do anything at this point. I did not watch her show nor did I buy her cookware, cookbooks so, I am not missing anything. as for Ciara well.... she is desperate for this CD to sell but having fun with hte n- word in her song is not it, that word is so vile and disgusting, I would be ashamed to use it, Ciara sounds like an idiot you cannot have fun with the n- word.
sweetpea1989's picture

Jesus is having a Paula Deen

Jesus is having a Paula Deen Cookware yardsale this weekend
Jesus H. Christ's picture

After ripping them in half ~

After ripping them in half ~ already put in today's trash for recycling. Hmph¡!
GetUrLife's picture

i lives in tha

i lives in tha South...rednecks will pay double for that crap now
Jesus H. Christ's picture

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