Paulaaaa! You got a lot of esplainin’ to do.
We all know Paula Deen’s history of racial insensitivity. In 2013, her use of racial slurs and her admission, during a deposition for a lawsuit, that she had used the N-word, incited media vitriol and a decision by The Food Network to drop her.
But it seems such punishment has still not inspired greater sense in the famed celebrity chef.
It’s one thing when others unearth the evidence of your past foibles, but to do it yourself?
Deen recently tweeted a four-year old picture of her and her son, Bobby Deen, dressed respectively as Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz’s characters from the beloved 1950s sitcom, I Love Lucy.
The still is from an old Halloween episode of Deen’s now defunct cooking show, and we’re not quite sure what possessed her to repost it now.
Granted, there’s no good time for thoughtless racism.
Not only did Paula Deen indulge in brownface, the make-up is much darker than the Euro-complected Desi Arnaz was. pic.twitter.com/UUuBnOpCU5— Nick Mamatas (@NMamatas) July 7, 2015
So what’s the issue with some good old costume fun? Bobby Deen is in brownface in an attempt to emulate Arnaz’s Latino heritage.
Twitter has been, as Twitter is wont to be in the face of bafflingly dumb bigotry, up in arms:
Paula Deen is like a human confederate flag— daniella?? (@FKADaniella) July 7, 2015
do you care that you are this racist or is their too much butter coursing through your veins for logic to properly circulate? @Paula_Deen— Nah Champa (@hatzigsut) July 7, 2015
Looking at the Paula Deen tweet like "you need to purify yourself in the waters of Lake Minnetonka." pic.twitter.com/092e2So6lQ— Charles M. Blow (@CharlesMBlow) July 7, 2015
Paula Deen, ugh. Her publicist needs a raise. Effective immediately.— Elliot Kathreptis (@greekcelt) July 7, 2015
Let's be fair and remember that Paula Deen is equally prejudiced against the arteries of all people, regardless of color.— John Fugelsang (@JohnFugelsang) July 7, 2015
The tweet has been taken down, and Deen blames her (no doubt long-suffering) social media manager for the gaffe. But did your social media manager force Bobby to don brownface, Paula? Did he?
Too late. Deen's sacked him.
Deen better do some long, hard introspection about her deeply embedded racism if she wants that career comeback she’s been vying for.
Maybe if a doctor could explain to Paula Deen that racism is like type 2 diabetes and you need to change your daily routine a little bit.— Dan Telfer (@dantelfer) July 7, 2015
And the rest of us need to remember: a well-constructed costume is enough of an homage. No need to alter your skin tone. By which we mean please don't.