Embattled Paula Deen finally makes delayed “Today” appearance, but no direct apology

Embattled lifestyle guru Paula Deen makes “Today” show appearance

Lifestyle guru Paula Deen has been on more of a defensive than an apology tour this week. Her most recent stop was on NBC’s “Today” show. During the interview, Deen spoke a great deal about how the scandal has affected her personally, but didn’t utter a direct apology.

“I have been overwhelmed and in a state of shock,” said Deen. “There have been some very hurtful lies said about me.”

Lauer came out of the chute by grilling Deen on how the loss of sponsors and endorsement deals have affect her, and her business empire.

“Let me say this Matt,” Deen said, “what I am here today to talk about is what I believe, and how I live my life. I believe that every creature on this Earth, every one of God’s creatures was created equal.”

Lauer pushed the financial issue by quoting a headline that touted there were millions of dollars at stake tied to the “Today” show interview.

“Are you here to stop the financial bleeding,” Lauer asked.

“I am here today because I want people to really know who I am,” replied Deen once again deflecting the question.

The scandal stems from testimony offered in a deposition by Deen about her use of the derogatory “n” word with employees at her restaurants. Deen’s use of the word was also brought up in relation to a plantation themed wedding her restaurant catered for a private client.

“I am so grateful for the (business) partners that have stood by me,” was Deen’s only response to the number of sponsors who have dropped her brand or were considering doing so.

Lauer followed up by asking the burning hot-button question…is Paula Deen a racist?

“No, I am not a racist,” replied Deen. “I was raised in a house hold with a father who would tolerate bad grades or a broken curfew, but told me ‘girl if I ever find out that you have behaved in a way like you are better than anyone else your butt is mine.”

Lauer later asked Deen about her alleged use of the “n” word in the past. He cited that Deen admitted to using the word in her sworn deposition, and included an excerpt from her testimony regarding whether using the “n” word when telling a joke was acceptable.

Deen’s response was as follows:

“I don’t know. Most jokes are about Jewish people, rednecks, black folks…I didn’t make up the jokes. They usually target, though, a group…I can’t, myself, determine what offends another person.”

“Do you have any doubt that African Americans are offended by the ‘n’ word,” asked Lauer.

“I don’t know Matt,” responded Deen. “I have asked myself that so many times because it’s so distressing to go into my kitchens and I hear what these young people are calling each other. It’s very, very distressing.”

“You never joined in on that language,” asked Lauer.

“No,” said Deen emphatically, “absolutely not!”

Later, Lauer asked Deen if upon reflection she wished that she had fudged the truth a bit.

“No,” she replied. “I am only prejudiced against two types of people; thieves and liars.”

Deen became quite emotional at the end of the interview, and while never offering an actual apology, alluded to the fact that she has apologized on previous occasions, and spoke about how the hurtful words and speculation had been damaging to not just Deen and her business but to family and friends as well.

“The people that know me, they are angry,” she said.

At the end of the interview, Deen evoked the words in the Bible regarding sin, and chalked up much of what has happened to a case of professional jealousy.

“If there is a person out there that has never said something that they wish they could take back, if you’re out there, please pick up that stone and throw it so hard at my head that it kills me, please. I want to meet you. I is what I is, and I’m not changing. And, there’s someone evil out there that saw what I had worked for and they wanted it.”

What do you think of Paula’s interview on the “Today” show? Weigh in with comments.

Advertisements

Former daytime TV actor finds solace, solitude in painting and social media

To millions, actor Thom Bierdz is known as the iconic Chancellor heir Phillip Chancellor on the daytime drama “The Young and the Restless.” Bierdz also has the distinction of being one of the first openly gay soap opera actors. But until recently, many had no idea of the real-life drama endured when it was revealed that Bierdz’s brother, Troy, had murdered their mother with a baseball bat in 1989. 20 years later, Bierdz has penned a new book, “Forgiving Troy,” which outlines his journey towards acceptance and forgiveness.

These days, Bierdz enjoys a solitary but fulfilling life in Lake Arrowhead, California exploring another of his passions; painting.  Bierdz was recently interviewed by Melissa Parker of Smashing Interviews Magazine where he discusses his past, his work, and his love for former co-star Emmy-winning actress Jeanne Cooper. You can also learn more about Bierdz, his artwork, his favorite poses (?) and why he’s “only gay for the gay press” by visiting his YouTube channel. He can also be seen as a guest star on the web series “Old Dogs & New Tricks.”

Remember Thom Bierdz from his daytime years? Share your thoughts and memories with us.

 

Is Eva Longoria “Ready for Love” after NBC cancels her show?

Eva and ErnestoIs it real, or just a coy denial, or is Latina beauty Eva Longoria really dating show bachelor, entrepreneur Ernesto Arguello? Numerous news agencies reported recently that Longoria and Arguello, a bachelor on the show “Ready for Love,” were a couple after spotting the duo on a few outings such as riding through Hollywood in Longoria’s Bentley convertible, and dining with celebri-chef Bobby Flay and stylist Robert Verdi in New York City. Some reports even have Arguello spending the night at Longoria’s  L.A. home.

On Tuesday NBC announced that it was pulling the plug on “Ready for Love,” a dating show loosely based on The Bachelor with 3 matchmakers doing the legwork for three über hot bachelors that included Arguello, Dallas-based financier Ben Patton and “Plain White T’s” band member Tim Lopez. Longoria served as executive producer for the show.

So what do you thin…does it matter if Longoria found love while helping others find love? Weigh in…

An open letter to sorority membership sparks concern and outrage

c307645_l copyFor some, the college experience is enriched by participating in the Greek system. Rushing a sorority or fraternity is almost a right of passage among college freshmen every year. While many have different reasons for rushing, the consensus is that most just want their college experience enriched by what the Greek system promises to bring to their lives. But is it that much of a benefit after all? According to some of the members of the University of Maryland’s chapter of the Delta Gamma sorority, their choice for “sisterhood” may have been misplaced.

In a recent email from an unnamed member of the sorority’s executive board, the young women were called out for being “awkward” and “boring” when mixing with their brothers from “match-up” fraternity Sigma Nu. The expletive-laden memo also calls the women out for spending too much time at events enjoying each others company, and not engaging their male counterparts.

“I do not give a flying f—, and Sigma Nu does not give a flying f—, about how much you f—ing love to talk to your sisters. You have 361 days out of the f—ing year to talk to sisters, and this week is NOT, I f—ing repeat NOT ONE OF THEM.”

The missive has brought some unwanted attention to the sorority, and has even garnered online parodies of the email being read aloud. A request was submitted to the web site Gawker, requesting that the email be removed, or at the least the names of the sorority and fraternity be removed from their accompanying article. To date, their request has not been granted.

What are your thoughts on this email message? Is it a proper message to send to young women? What was your Greek experience in college? We welcome your comments.

Fox News personality creates controversy with statements on Muslims studying in the U.S.

Did Bob Beckel hang himself with comments made about Muslim students?

Fox News has not been a paragon of accurate reporting in recent years. Just last week, during the height of the Boston Marathon bombing media blitz, the network announced that there had indeed been an arrest in the case…well in advance of there actually being a named suspect. The network later backtracked on the story, but still the damage was done. Once it was said, it can’t be taken back. Which is another chink in the networks armor, especially in light of recent comments from one of its most liberal personalities.

Bob Beckel, co-host of Fox’s “The Five,” has stepped into a mine field by concluding that Muslim students should be “cut off” from coming to the United States. Beckel made the statement during a discussion of the Boston bombing suspects with his co-anchors on Tuesday’s show.

We know that in the Muslim communities around the world, they do not like us. They recruit people from poor areas and turn them into terrorists. I think we really have to consider…that we’re going to have to cut off Muslim students from coming to this country for some period of time so that we can at least absorb what we’ve got, look at what we’ve got and decide whether some of the people here should be sent back home or sent to prison. .” 

Beckel took this stand during a discussion on the Tsarnaev brothers, the alleged bombing suspects responsible for the attack in Boston last week. It was, however, difficult for  Beckel to quantify his argument considering the brothers had entered the country legally years ago. Still, Beckel seemed to realize that he may have spoken out of turn, and tried to explain his position further by asserting that young Muslims who were already in the country should be allowed to stay, but further restrictions should be implemented, and that Chinese students should be included as well. Beckel’s stance on Chinese students is that they are sent here to the U.S. to learn computers, only to return home to “hack us.”

What are your thoughts on Mr. Beckel’s comments? Offer your thoughts in our comments section.

 

ND news anchor’s career derailed by “Freaking Shoes” on the air

When your fired, you’re fired. Or are you…?

We’ve all been there. In a moment of stress, we utter something under our breath that may be a bit…racy. You know what I mean; expletive laden thoughts. Now imagine if that moment was caught on camera and broadcast to a television viewing audience. That is the case for one former news anchor in North Dakota.

AJ Clemente was fired from his job as an anchor for North Dakota NBC station KFYR after uttering what can most easily be translated into “freaking shoes,” unaware that his microphone was still live. The worst part of this story is that it was not only AJ’s first day on the air as anchor, it was also his last. The difficulty stemmed from  not only first day jitters, but the fact that the first words he was to utter on the air was a story about the winner of the Boston marathon, Tsegaye Kebede. Still, owning up to his on-air gaffe, Clemente took to the Twitter-sphere to give a decidedly light-hearted spin to his predicament.

“Tough day,Thanks for the support,We all make mistakes. I’m truly sorry for mine.
I’ll try my hardest to come back better and learn from this.”

Later, Clemente posted the news that no news anchor wants to get from his employer.

“Unfortunately KFYRTV has decided to let me go. Thank you to them and everyone in ND for the opportunity
and everyone for the support.”

But it is safe to say the the legend that is becoming AJ Clemente will not end soon. He is slated to appear as a guest on NBC’s “Today” show on Wednesday.

What do you think of AJ’s mistake? Should he have lost his job, or been given a second chance? Weigh in with your comments.

Venezuelan Preside Hugo Chavez dead

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez dead

The announcement came today from Venezuelan Vice-President Nicholas Maduro that the country’s President, Hugo Chavez, has died. The controversial leader lost his long battle with cancer at approximately 3:55p.m. EST.

According to Maduro funeral plans will be announced shortly, and plans will then get underway for the election of a new leader. Read more by following this link.