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Paula Deen admits in deposition to using N-word, reports say

  • Paula Deen 640

    Paula Deen, the queen of butter, was diagnosed with diabetes several years ago, but she waited to go public with it-after lining up a lucrative drug endorsement deal. (AP)

  • Paula Deen Hit with Ham

    Paula Deen, center, and her sons Jamie, right, and Bobby, rear, tape her show Thursday July 27, 2006, in Savannah, Ga. Cable TV's queen of Southern-fried comfort food is still coming to grips with the Paula-mania that's seized Savannah since her Food Network show took off in 2002. Her restaurant served 400,000 people last year _ nearly 1,100 a day. (AP Photo/Stephen Morton)

Celebrity chef Paula Deen admitted in a recorded deposition to using the N-word and planning a slavery-themed wedding, according to multiple reports.

The May 17 deposition where she made the alleged admissions is part of a $1.2 million lawsuit brought by Lisa Jackson, the former manager of a Savannah, Georgia, restaurant run by Deen and her brother Bubba Hiers.

Jackson alleges in the suit that Deen used the N-word at the restaurant and that Hiers sexually harassed her.

According to the reports, in the deposition, Deen replied “Yes, of course,” when asked if she used the N-word. 

Deen said she used the word when a black man put a gun to her head during a bank robbery some years ago.

She said "I'm sure I have" when asked if she had used the word since.

She said she did not tell racist jokes and did not use the n-word in that context. “Things have changed since the ’60s in the South,” she said. “And my children and my brother object to that word being used in any cruel or mean behavior.”

Jackson said also Deen wanted African-American employees to act like slaves for a big wedding she was planning. Deen explained she got the idea from a restaurant where "the whole entire waiter staff was middle-aged black men, and they had on beautiful white jackets with a black bow tie," the National Enquirer reports. The magazine also quoted Deen as saying: “I mean, it was really impressive. That restaurant represented a certain era in America…after the Civil War, during the Civil War, before the Civil War…It was not only black men, it was black women…I would say they were slaves.”

Her brother Bubba also admitted to referring to President Obama with the N-word, the report claims.

Food Network, which airs two of Paula's shows, "Paula's Best Dishes" and "Paula's Home Cooking" distanced themselves from Deen's comments:

"Food Network does not tolerate any form of discrimination and is a strong proponent of diversity and inclusion. We will continue to monitor the situation,” a Food Network representative told on Wednesday.