Paula Deen fans roast Food Network

Supporters of the Southern chef have raced to her defense, creating a social-media tsunami over her firing.

By Aimee Picchi Jun 24, 2013 1:30PM
Paula Deen poses with fans in New York City on June 5, 2013 (© Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images)Food Network has learned a few things about Paula Deen over the past week. 


First, she dreamed up a plantation-themed wedding and let the racial epithets fly. Second, her apologies are, well, awkward at best.


Third, don't get her fans angry. 


Deen's supporters are melting down over the decision by the Scripps Network (SNI) channel to fire the Southern chef after she admitted to using the N-word, along with her plan to dress black waiters as slaves. The revelations came in a deposition she gave in a lawsuit from a former employee who alleges racial and sexual harassment. 


Her Food Network fans are having none of it, taking to the channel's Facebook page to register their outrage and hijacking posts not related to Deen to vent their feelings. 


One post about a "salad showdown" -- in which fans pick a favorite salad recipe -- was dominated on Monday morning by more than 200 responses focusing on Deen's treatment. 


"Paula Deen made a mistake years ago and has issued a heartfelt apology to everyone. So she's human. That's more than can be said of the smug and holier-than-thou politically correct executives at the Food Network. Bye-bye!" wrote one fan of the embattled chef. 


Many of her supporters said Food Network overreacted by firing her.


As of Monday afternoon, more than 27,000 fans had "liked" an "I Support Paula Deen" Facebook page. 


Similar support was found by The New York Times when it visited Deen's restaurant The Lady and Sons, a popular Savannah, Ga., eatery. Some fans there talked about boycotting Food Network. Most of those people were white, although one African-American supporter told the newspaper that Deen is "just from another time."


Fans might soon have another reason to reach a boil. Her QVC deal to sell pots and pans is also in jeopardy, TMZ reports. A representative for the channel said QVC doesn't tolerate discriminatory behavior. 


But given her huge and vocal fan base, Deen and butter-lathered recipes might still have a future. After all, Americans don't deny disgraced celebrities second acts (think of Martha Stewart or Tiger Woods). And once things simmer down, another cable network just might be eager to cater to her miffed fans by putting Deen back on TV. 


Follow Aimee Picchi on Twitter at @aimeepicchi.


More on moneyNOW

23Comments
Jun 24, 2013 2:25PM
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Someone explain to me how this so-called "plantation-style wedding" is so much more distasteful than surrounding Madonna or Miley Cyrus or Britney, etc. with a bunch of stripped down, writhing African-American male dancers in some Neo-Mandingo setting on stage? Is THAT stereotyped image any more acceptable? Interesting what disgusts and what is celebrated in our culture.
Jun 24, 2013 3:23PM
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deen should just say she was rapping ......totally acceptable to use all words
Jun 24, 2013 4:04PM
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I task anyone (white) that has reached the age we are to state that they have NEVER uttered the "N" word in private or publically (at work, bar or the "CLUB".  Why is it okay for THEM to call us WHITEY, CRACKER, HONKY or any of the several other names? Somebody has to grow a pair and admit that they are just a bunch of whiny little brats.  I believe, like others, that what is uttered in PRIVATE is subject to first amendment rights.  I love Paula Deen and I wouldn't go back to the "Food Network" even if the begged me.  I think that any number of cable or regular channels would be lucky to sign her. 
We love you and support you, hope to see you soon on a new show.
1Grumpy!

Jun 24, 2013 2:01PM
Jun 24, 2013 3:18PM
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GET A LIFE

a -word b- word c-word..........soon you cant use any words.........what garbage

Jun 24, 2013 6:02PM
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I don't think there is a person on this planet who hasn't said something  against another group or race.  Remember Al Sharpton and what about Jessie Jackson  ... Those two clowns weren't fired!   It seems to me it's always the White folks that are singled out..
Jun 24, 2013 3:03PM
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msn ought to report a little bit about the predatory lending practices of its previous owner, nbc. hopefully, they will explain whether or not gecc targeted N people or M people or those with less education. my guess is that gecc did a great deal more damage to people than paula deen did.
Jun 24, 2013 3:06PM
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First:  Paula Dean has nothing to do with Finance

Second:  There are more important things to be talking about

Third:  The "N" word?  Whoa now that's important to know about
Jun 24, 2013 4:46PM
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I don't even know how this thing started? Isn't she the one that brought it up or did someone DISCOVER something. Geez, I hope no kindergarten papers are laying around. Might have said it and didn't even spell it right? It's getting to the point that to reply or respond to anything you need to write it down, analyze it for a day or two, correct it, and hope you didn't miss some interpretation of it? I'm 1/2 Polish, 1/2 Italian-----I ought to be really pis-ed.
Jun 24, 2013 5:18PM
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What the hell is wrong with everyone?Who has not or does use various words other than black.Be honest to yourself at the very least.How many black people do you consider friends?When is the last time a black was in your home? Think about it! I like the food network.I do not really like Paula Deen...just to many of those y'alls turn my stomach.She really seems like a phony.However,she does not deserve to be castigated for something the majority of white people say.Be honest y'all.
Jun 26, 2013 1:40PM
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Obviously, McCarthy wasn't the only one obsessed with a witch hunt.

If everyone at the Food Network or Smithfield Hams or any other company or media outlet that is considering throwing out Paula Deen were to HONESTLY state whether they themselves had either heard or said the N word in the past (key words here, folks: HEARD & SAID IN THE PAST), then they would suddenly find themselves brandmarked as racists, too.
Paula had the gumption to answer honestly under oath. Which is a lot more than a lot of folks would have had the gumption to do under oath.

I'm sure I've been called a cracker or a honkey a jillion times. However, in this double-standard world, that is obviously OK.

I hope the Food Network goes belly up over this witch hunt.
Jun 24, 2013 9:42PM
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This rates right up there with Keeping up with Kardashions.......although I would watch Paula....have watched Paula...

Jun 27, 2013 7:16PM
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This is America, as a people I think it is important to be able to say what we want. Other wise what is the purpose of "Freedom of Speech"? I think everyone that is judging this poor woman are a bunch of hypocrite's. Who has never done something that they didn't regret? NOBODY. Stop trying to make an example of this sweet woman. If Paula Deen is no longer on Food Network, I will no longer watch that channel, If Wal-Mart stop's selling her merchandise, I will no longer shop there. I am not the only one who feel's this way. My family and friends feel the same. I say we BOYCOTT. If these companies are not playing fair, I say neither do we as fans and consumers. Make there rating's drop and there sale quotas plummet
Jun 24, 2013 8:19PM
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First of all, I don't understand why an article about Paula Deen is in the MSN Money section. However, no matter how pro or anti Paula Deen you are; the only thing the Food Network cares about is sponsors. Paula brought a lot of money in sponsors to the network & now the sponsors are deserting like rats on a sinking ship.....no sponsors = no Paula Deen.
Jun 27, 2013 12:53PM
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I be a Honkey, Cracker, what ever.  Who gives a Flying ***?     It was 30 years ago.   Everyone has done stuff they aren't proud of , so does everyone lose their job over what happened 30 years ago?
Jun 26, 2013 7:10PM
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What is she crying about? She is worth like 15 million. She should retire and enjoy her life. The food Network is made of  a bunch of fools anyway haven't you seen the people who are in charge? They look so fake and I can see that from a mile away. Paula you can get your own show then buy the Food Network with your earnings....LOL
Jun 25, 2013 11:11AM
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I saw her fans on the news. It looked like an audition for the Biggest Loser.
Jun 24, 2013 7:20PM
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Racism is out. Let her mutter her epithets in her own kitchen.
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