Now over a year later, in a videotaped deposition, Deen admitted to once using the N-word in the past. The 66-year-old Southerner was subsequently fired by the Food Network and lost multiple endorsement deals. Until recently, Winfrey had remained silent on her friend’s latest controversy.
Oprah had recently been asked about her southern fried BFF during an interview with Extra, but merely laughed and declined to comment, stating:
“Oh my god! I don’t have anything to do with Paula Deen,” she insisted. “She is not the first white lady to use the N-word! Good lord!”
The media mogul subsequently caved in to pressures to make a statement and finally shared her thoughts about Deen’s N-Word controversy last night with Entertainment Tonight.
“In the very first days I tried to reach her and then I decided to stay out of it as I saw it blowing up,” Winfrey, 59, tells Entertainment Tonight. “In time she will be fine. For me, it all just felt kind of sad.”
“I think Paula Deen was sort of used as a symbol, but I think lots of people use the word inappropriately all the time,” said Oprah, who doesn’t pal around with people that use the word in her presence.
“Nobody in their right mind is going to call me the N-word. You know, you see those fools on Twitter sometime say ridiculous things. But nobody in their right mind is going to do that to my face, because true racism is being able to have power over somebody else,” Winfrey explains.
“So that doesn’t happen to me that way.”
The media mogul, who also opened up about her role in Lee Daniels’ “The Butler,” revealed her own personal experience with discrimination.
While Winfrey may be one of the most recognizable faces on the planet, she apparently doesn’t have as big a fan base in Switzerland. Winfrey tells O’Dell that while in Zurich for Tina Turner’s wedding she left the hotel to go shopping by herself and was denied service when the clerk assumed that Winfrey wouldn’t be able to afford the bag she was asking to see.
Winfrey ultimately left the store without making a fuss, deciding it was better to leave empty-handed than give the employee commission.
Winfrey admits she’d like a sit down interview with Deen, but it may take a while to happen. Prior to talking to Deen on-camera though, Winfrey says she wants to ensure the avoidance of a “defensive conversation,” saying that as time passes Deen is more likely to have an honest, candid conversation without the fear of being attacked.
“I just really want to know what happened,” said Winfrey.
On a slightly related note, Oprah recently released the recent cover of “O” Magazine where she’s all about her big humungous
What do you think of Miss O’s comments about Paula Deen?
Do you feel Deen would be open & honest with Oprah if they sat down for an interview?