US TV drops Paula Deen after remarks

2013-06-22 15:04

Washington - A top US television network on Friday dropped Paula Deen, the self-proclaimed queen of Southern cooking, from a show she has hosted for a decade after a series of racist remarks.

The Food Network said it would not renew Paula Deen's contract when it expires at the end of June, declining to provide further details on the reasons behind its decision.

But just hours earlier, the 66-year-old celebrity chef had failed to show up for an interview on NBC's Today show and then appeared in two online videos in which she begged her family and fans to forgive her for using "hurtful language".

The white-haired, blue-eyed chef with a strong southern accent has faced criticism over her remarks in a deposition for a discrimination lawsuit filed by a former employee. Deen admitted in the document to using racist language in the workplace.

"I want to apologise to everybody for the wrong that I've done. I want to learn and grow from this," Deen said haltingly in a first video posted on YouTube that was later removed from the video-sharing website.

"Inappropriate and hurtful language is totally, totally unacceptable."

In a longer video, Deen said that "your color of your skin, your religion, your sexual preference does not matter."

"I was wrong, yes, I've worked hard, and I have made mistakes, but that is no excuse and I offer my sincere apology to those that I have hurt, and I hope that you forgive me because this comes from the deepest part of my heart," she added, more composed this time.

Lisa Jackson, the general manager of Uncle Bubba's Oyster House, filed a lawsuit against Deen last year claiming she had suffered sexual and racial discrimination at work.

Deen is a culinary institution in the United States. In addition to several television shows, she has also published more than a dozen cookbooks, opened two restaurants (including Bubba's) in Savannah, Georgia, and launched product lines.

Known for her love of butter and fried fare, Deen is no stranger to controversy.

Last year, fans were outraged when she announced she had Type 2 diabetes and that same day backed diabetes drug Victoza and teamed up with its manufacturer Novo Nordisk in a lucrative deal.

Comments

  • Cuthbert Murwisi - 2013-06-22 17:53

    She is sorry her career is going down the drain not for her misbehavior.

      Lauren Wepener - 2013-06-23 13:57

      Totally agree! Seems her behaviour is entrenched...you don't just snap out of it. Uitgevang, ja!

  • Craig Wilson - 2013-06-22 18:26

    she always irritated the hell out of me.

  • Sue Maguire - 2013-06-22 19:09

    Who is she? Never heard of her so I've obviously missed the programmes. Oh well, another oops makes someone noticed.

  • Nathan Lombard - 2013-06-23 01:02

    Did nobody tell her you can no longer call a spade a spade? What was she thinking?

  • Agatha Moorcroft - 2013-07-11 22:44

    Thank goodness!!! Best news ever!!!That woman with her irritating SOUTHERN accent I can seriously do without! She reminds me way too much of my free state inlaws:&...you can take the person out of a farm...but you sure as hell can't take the farm out of them;D

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