Paula Deen, the celeb Southern belle chef, has built an empire on her Southern style persona. The beautiful, platinum coiffed, blue-eyed lady took her cooking all the way to the top. Some say that the lady truly responsible for her cooking success is a black lady still receiving minimum wage.
The Food Network, of course, just fired Paula, for her racial slur. She admitted to having used the word "Nigger." I don't use the "N" word, let's call it what it is. Women her age from the South, as others, have probably used the word, as it is a part of their cultural language. Remember the movie, The Help? That's probably Paula's world. The rappers sing the word and have gotten rich using the word and now Paula is fired for it. Well now, how to do you like your double standard?
"Nigger" is offensive and degrading. Simple as that. Some make fun with it, like Richard Pryor, for example, as well as a host of other comedians. Rappers sign on with it. In some quarters it is a word that curses and in others it is word used with affection. It depends on the social/cultural context. But in essence, the word should be a no-no. There should be zero tolerance.
Deen has been an incredible marketer as she has built her brand to include her fine cooking, cook books and even a cooking line. But the Southern belle got caught. Those of us who live north think one way but some TV interviews that included black and white Southerners express that she should be forgiven after her sensitive and sincere apology. Amazing. Should we forget about the lynchings, too?
You will never stop the use of the insulting word, if you don't have severe punishment for its usage. Paula should loose her contract with The Food Network. But the rappers ought to have economic punishment too.
There has to be a single standard. Perhaps now that Paula Deen is the poster child for her bad language she will be a role model of what not to do.
But what do we do with the rappers? They should have a consequence too.