Paula Deen Video Apology Released After Racism Backlash: 'I Beg for Your Forgiveness' (WATCH)

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By Benge Nsenduluka , CP Reporter
June 21, 2013|3:31 pm
  • paula deen

Paula Deen released a public apology via social networking site YouTube on Friday in response to backlash she has received over her admitted use of the N-word.

In a somber, 46-second video, the Food Network star begged for forgiveness from the public after it was alleged that she is a racist. Deen admitted to making "mistakes" in her past.

"I want to apologize to everybody for the wrong that I've done. I want to learn and grow from this. Inappropriate, hurtful language is totally, totally unacceptable," Deen said in the video.

"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," she continued. "Please forgive me for the mistakes that I've made."

Deen, 66, recently came under fire after it was revealed in a May 17 deposition that she admitted to previously using racial slurs.

Lisa Jackson, who is a former manager of Uncle Bubba's Seafood and Oyster House restaurant in Georgia, filed suit against the celebrity chef and her brother, Bubba Hiers, who are both owners of the establishment. Jackson, who is white, claims that she was often subject to both sexual and racial harassment.

"Yes, of course," Deen reportedly replied when asked by Jackson's attorney whether she had ever used the N-word. "It's been a very long time."

Deen, who maintains that she is not a racist, recalled her old school upbringing as the reason for her use of the racial slur.

"But that's just not a word that we use as time has gone on. Things have changed since the '60s in the South. And my children and my brother object to that word being used in any cruel or mean behavior. As well as I do," Deen said in a statement obtained by CNN.com.

William Franklin, who is Deen's attorney, blasted media reports and maintained that his client "does not condone" racism in any shape or form. Shortly after Franklin's statement was released, a separate statement was released by Paula Deen Enterprises.

"During a deposition where she swore to tell the truth, Ms. Deen recounted having used a racial epithet in the past, speaking largely about a time in American history which was quite different than today," reads the statement given to People magazine.

"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 statement continued. "To be clear, Ms. Deen does not find acceptable the use of this term under any circumstance by anyone nor condone any form of racism or discrimination."

 

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