- (Photo: Screen Grab via NBC)
Paula Deen recently thanked Rev. Al Sharpton for his support when the civil rights activist seemed to come to her defense recently.
Deen, the 66-year-old restaurateur and cooking show host, made headlines last week when one of her former restaurant employees alleged that she made racial jokes at the establishment. In a testimony from a Deen's deposition on May 17, the Food Network host admitted to using the N-word in the past.
Sharpton, a Baptist minister, recently commented on Deen's situation.
"I think that it was just not about her using racial language," Sharpton told TMZ recently. "A lot of us have said things in the past that we regretted saying years ago."
Deen caught wind of Sharpton's comments and took to Twitter to thank the civil rights activist.
"I want to thank Reverend Sharpton for his kind, kind words," Deen tweeted
However, the reverend made it clear that he was not necessarily defending Deen. Instead, Sharpton told TMZ that he is defending treating Deen fairly.
"I mean she deserves what's fair…I think you cannot deal with what is fair and not fair till we seek out in the present the circumstances she's accused of, not something from 20 years ago," Sharpton told TMZ.
Although some are questioning Deen admitting that she previously used the N-word, representatives for Sharpton said he is focused on the present accusations brought against her by her former employees.
"There is more current information that is being divulged that we might need to be concerned about," Sharpton's spokeswoman told The Huffington Post.
While the fate of Deen's lawsuit has yet to be determined, Food Network is reportedly ready to part ways with the cooking host, according to a press release that network released last week. Deen has been on the network since 2002 when she appeared on "Paula's Home Cooking" and later added "Paula's Best Dishes" to the channel in 2008.