Thanks to accusations of racism, the celebrity chef who once seemed as sweet and harmless as your southern grandmother (though Grandma’s been known to drop an un-PC comment or two herself), now finds her life and career in an upheaval. With each passing day more allegations and more bad endorsement news seem to be popping up for Deen, who is set to make her first public appearance on the “Today Show” this week. No word yet on whether she’ll insist that Al Roker wear a bow tie.
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Remember when Paula Deen’s biggest issue was people saying she promoted an unhealthy lifestyle and accusing her of using too much butter? Boy, how she probably longs for those days.
Starting with her appearance on the “Today Show,” you can expect to see a whole lot of public “I’m sorry” videos of Paula over the next few months. Like every celebrity who sticks their foot in their mouth, Paula Deen now faces the daunting prospect of repairing her public image, and doing so will likely require eating plenty of humble pie (with no butter) on national TV. In any case, it will be a long time before Paula Deen gets back in America’s good graces, though it may happen a bit faster in the south.
You know your public image has taken a hit when even the ham industry is looking to part ways with you. That’s exactly what happened though, when Smithfield, the company that sold a line of “Paula Deen Collection” spiral hams, announced that they would no longer partner with Deen in light of recent events. And for those of you who don’t remember, this isn’t the first slap in the face Paula’s gotten from the people at Smithfeild.
According to one of the more recent allegations, Paula used to rely on black employees from her brother’s restaurant to staff parties at her mansion. Which seems great, right? She’s giving people the opportunity for extra work. Oh, but wait… She didn’t actually pay them. She just gave them beer and liquor. To be fair though, she only had several TV shows, her own line of seemingly endless products and a few dozen best-selling cookbooks to her name, so you can understand why it was tough to pay them in actual money as opposed to booze.
Where will one go to buy pots and pans endorsed by the great Paula Deen if not QVC? The Home Shopping Network? Please, like some kind of slob?! QVC, which has for years been the main retailer of Paula’s cookware line, announced they “have no immediate plans for her to appear” and that they are “closely monitoring these events and reviewing their relationship with Ms. Deen.” Doesn’t sound too promising.
The Food Network, which had served as the home for two Paula Deen shows, “Paula’s Home Cooking” and “Paula’s Best Dishes,” announced they would be cutting ties with the star chef when her contract expires at the end of the month. That news came even after Paula released a video that said she apologized from “the deepest part” of her heart. Which, incidentally, in spite of her recent weight loss, is still made up of a dangerously high percentage of butter.