As Jesus was writing in the sand, the Pharisees brought to him a woman, taken in the act of committing adultery. They told him of her sin and asked, “Should we not follow the law given us by the prophets and stone her to death?”
Without looking up, Jesus replied, “Let he who among you is without sin cast the first stone.”
At that point, a rock went flying over Jesus’ head and hit the woman squarely in the stomach, knocking her over backwards.
Jesus looked up and said, “Oh really, mother.”
Pardon the minor irreverence, but that joke if you are a follower of either the teachings of the Roman Catholic or Eastern Orthodox Churches is theologically correct. Mary, is unique in being conceived without sin (The Immaculate Conception) – but as for the rest of us, we’re all in the cesspool of sin and wickedness and moral turpitude – some of us more deeply, perhaps than others.
And now cometh Ms. Paula Deen – the press’ most currently in vogue whipping person (I was going to say girl but that would probably be construed as sexist). A woman who is so low and venal that she can’t even see high enough to look at the scum of the earth.
Ms. Deen, as you’re probably aware, has had a successful career promoting her Southern style of cooking – which if it were Yiddish food could easily be mistaken for the kind of cuisine that killed more Jews than Hitler. She’s had a good run promoting her artery clogging recipes (which have gotten a bit more healthful in later years). It was not for the bill of fare that she presented that I was not a frequent viewer of her program. It was because of her very heavy twang that always reminded me of two cats on the back fence in heat. Sorry, fingernails running across a blackboard sounds more melodious to me.
Well, at some time in Ms. Deen’s past, apparently she uttered the “N” (or is it the “n”) word? She is, after all from the South where the term was frequently used – often in a descriptive rather than a disparaging way. But there is no question that it was also used frequently in the latter context. How Ms. Deen used it is probably only known to Ms. Deen.
And so, whether because of sincere remorse at having used the “n” word in the past or, perhaps for fear of losing her lucrative financial enterprise through backlash, she broadcast what appeared to me to be a very heartfelt apology. It seemed genuine enough to this viewer – but even if it were not, I am willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.
Apparently, those at FNN, which hosted her television program and those at Target who carried her line of cookware and cookbooks had greater insight because they have both divorced themselves from any further dealings with this woman and have held themselves up as gleaming examples of “responsible corporate citizenship.”
I cannot help but think of their actions in the same light as I did of Captain Louis Renault in “Casablanca” who, as he is closing down Rick’s Café says, “I’m shocked, shocked to find that there’s gambling going on here,” as he receives his roulette winnings from the croupier.
Let’s make a leap and say that Ms. Deen and her video were staged and melodramatized simply to keep her business enterprise afloat and that Ms. Deen truly holds feelings of disdain for our darkly-complected citizens. While I, and I am sure most of you who are reading this would find that unfortunate if not personally insulting, does she not have a right to harbor that attitude? Isn’t difference of opinion – even if it is only one person’s view and no matter how noxious we personally might find it – permitted in what we have billed as an “inclusive society?” Or is inclusion so narrowly interpreted that only those who hold the currently popular view may determine who is to be allowed membership and who excluded?
Perhaps you are familiar with the “comedy” of the late Redd Foxx, Eddie Murphy and Chris Rock. Frankly, I find all of them to be extremely offensive because each employs the “n” word along with “ho” and “mo fo” and “b*tch” among other terms of endearment. And they are restrained by comparison to today’s Rap “artists”.
So tomorrow I am going down to my neighborhood Target and browse through their CD’s to see if they have pulled all of the works containing these “lyrics” in accordance with their defined policy of corporate “responsibility.” And if not, I am going to ask the Manager why not?
I’ll let you know what I find out. But if I am not satisfied with their response, I will no longer choose to do business with Target and will explain to my neighbors why they shouldn’t either.
“Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”