Paula Deen Apologizing For Saying N-word, Using Plantation Costumes

Food Network personality Paula Deen released a video statement this afternoon addressing the controversy over her acknowledged use of the N-word and other racist epithets. Here’s what she says:

“I want to apologize to everybody for the wrong that I’ve done,” Deen says during part of the video. “I want to learn and grow from this. Inappropriate, hurtful language is totally, totally unacceptable. I’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way, but I beg you, my children, my team, my fans, my partners, I beg for your forgiveness. Please forgive me for the mistakes that I’ve made.”

This apology comes after The National Enquirer and other media outlets reported Deen’s confession, during a May 17 video-taped deposition, to using the N-word on several occasions and making racist comments.

In the video, Deen addresses the audience directly, sometimes stumbling over her words, with basic edits stringing her thoughts together. This follows a statement about the deposition that was released by Deen’s company, Paula Deen Enterprises. It said Deen “recounted having used a racial epithet in the past, speaking largely about a time in American history which was quite different than today.” It went on to say, “She was born 60 years ago when America’s South had schools that were segregated, different bathrooms, different restaurants and Americans rode in different parts of the bus. This is not today.”

The Food Network, where Deen’s shows appear, said it was keeping an eye on the situation. “Food Network does not tolerate any form of discrimination and is a strong proponent of diversity and inclusion,” the network said. There is no word on whether or not this could impact her son’s shows on The Food Network or its sister outlet, Cooking Channel.

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