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JCPenney

Bye Bye Paula

6/28/2013 11:53 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

0628_paula_deen_article_jcpenny_tmz_3
Paula Deen
's officially the least popular kid on the playground ... JCPenney just severed ties with the celebrity chef in the wake of her n-word scandal.

A rep for the department store released a statement today, saying, "We can confirm that jcpenney has decided to discontinue selling Paula Deen branded merchandise."

JCP had sold Deen-brand kitchen products ... which is good news for Martha Stewart.

The retail giant is the latest to run for the hills -- Target, Home Depot, QVC, Kmart, Sears, and Walmart (to name a few) have already dumped Paula.

149 COMMENTS

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61.

katkrazy    

Deen is a career sneak, cheat, racist & a liar. She built her empire on enticing fat laden foods & laughed all the way to the bank, developed type 2, & hid it in order to continue earning the big bucks, signed with a pharmaceutical & cried for her reputation, oy vey! The restaurant business is brutal, I have no doubt she and her brother were beastly to their staff. The coddling needs to stop. This woman has behaved very badly & compromised her reputation with major companies. Wake up!

461 days ago
62.

Pookie    

Until about a week ago, Paula Deen was just Food Network's most lovable diabetes peddler this side of Ina Garten. She'd tell America to squeeze hamburger patties in between a split glazed donut, and we'd turn a blind eye. "Deep-fry lasagna, y'all," Deen would coo, and everyone would let it slide. When she came out last year with diabetes and became the face of a diabetic drug, that was just fine. America even let this woman tell Al Roker with a straight face that "I've always encouraged moderation."

But that all changed when a deposition surfaced in which the Georgia chef admitted to using the N-word and fantasizing about an antebellum-themed wedding, complete with slaves. Her lawyers pushed back, but then Deen went into full-on scramble mode: She canceled on the Today show, released bizarre videos left and right, then got fired by her network and her sponsors. On Friday, Kmart, Sears, J.C. Penney, and Walgreens dropped the cooking star, joining Target, Home Depot, and diabetes drug company Novo Nordisk less than 48 hours since Deen re-appeared on Today and claimed she wasn't a racist. "Would, I have fired me, knowing me? No. I am so fortunate that so many of partners, that know who I am," Deen told Lauer, speaking about partners she doesn't have today.

But book sales are up! Her new one, Paula Deen's New Testament: 250 Favorite Recipes, All Lightened Up, is now the No. 1 best-seller on Amazonr. And you know why? It's not intrigue. It's because the deniers are sticking by their Southern belle of fantasy themed slave weddings.

Paula admitted she used the word -- back in the 1980s - when a black guy walked into the bank, stuck a gun in her face and ordered her to hand over What is left out is that people are more upset that Deen's deposition has roots in an employment discrimination lawsuit with a slew of ugly allegations, the most serious of which is that Deen enabled a hostile and racist work environment. Yes, most people say certain things that are ugly and stupid and wouldn't want to be judged for the rest of their lives for it, but there are exponentially fewer people who get smacked with an employment discrimination lawsuit and then have to talk about it, which she has refused to do. She has never addressed these serious allegations in the lawsuit,.
This site isn't so much a Paula Deen fan site as it is a microscope into some of the more flagrant Paula Deen defenders. And in the week and a half since Deen's deposition leaked, the WPMATFN Tumblr has amassed more than a dozen pages of fans. Here's a sampling of what they've found, like this awful person:

Or this "none sense":

Or this interesting theory of how using the N-word, uh, doesn't make you racist:

So can't we just ignore these terrible people? Well, they don't see (or don't want to see) the difference Deen using the N-word as a slur and its use in black or hip-hop culture, so that's one thing. And, okay, some of them that don't quite fully understand that the First Amendment allows you to say anything you want — but that it also doesn't require that your boss be absolutely cool with everything you say. These are the people who don't get why this is such a big deal, and why the conversation about race that followed Deen's disaster remains important. To wake up people like this. Unfortunately, every time another one of Deen's corporate sponsors drops her, the more vocal these fans seem to become. At least that's good news for Paula Deen, who has a $17 million empire riding on these folks.

Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments or send an email to the author at aabadsantos@theatlantic.com. You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.

461 days ago
63.

lisalee    

james u are jus as stupid as she is , an i dont think white ppl really understand wht th word means otherwise they wouldnt be saying such foolishness, this word came from slavery rent roots, or mandingo, and u would see, but over the years the blacks have used to word to represent they close feeling to ppl like them, it is use black to blacks, it is obvious when a white uses it it would be different

461 days ago
64.

kitnplayn    

Corporate America is sending a strong message to anyone who wants to use racist language. Belittle them, because they are insecure little cowards.

461 days ago
65.

Confessions    

Wait! Jcpenney's Has dropped Paula Too? Damn Maybe They Put Her Shyt On Sale. I Can Use Some New Pots and Pans

461 days ago
66.

AplMacLady    

lmao. I do not feel bad for her. She's getting everything she deserves.

461 days ago
67.

AplMacLady    

I'm sick of this s**t. Why don't you dumb racist White people read the Jackson lawsuit/complaint file. Since you don't do research on your own, I'll do it for you:

Deen and company are accused of sexual harassment and racial discrimination PUT INTO ACTION in the workplace

Ms. Jackson was subjected to violent behavior by Bubba Hiers, violent behavior that included sexual harassment of Ms. Jackson and other female employees and assault and battery ofMs. Jackson. Mr. Hiers' violent behavior also included racial harassment, assault, battery and other humiliating conduct practiced upon the employees managed by Ms. Jackson. The conduct described herein is no mere offensive utterance; the conduct was threatening, even physically threatening, and universally humiliating. The staff of Uncle Bubba's Seafood and Oyster House, Inc. ("Uncle Bubba's restaurant") lived in fear ofBubba Hiers.


15.

Ms. Jackson began employment with the Paula Deen Family of Companies on or about February 2005 and continued employment until she could no longer bear the sexual harassment, racial harassment, and abusive treatment as described herein, leaving employment of the Paula Deen Family of Companies on August 19,2010.


Ms. Jackson began employment with the Paula Deen Family of Companies on or about February 2005 and continued employment until she could no longer bear the sexual harassment, racial harassment, and abusive treatment as described herein, leaving employment of the Paula Deen Family ofCompanies on August 19,2010.
16.

Ms. Jackson was first hired by Uncle Bubba's restaurant as a hostess. After six months, she was promoted to General Manager. She remained in the position of General Manager from approximately August 2005 until August 19, 2010.
17.

Ms. Jackson replaced a General Manager that was allegedly sleeping with servers, a matter disregarded by Bubba Hiers. In a meeting with that General Manager and Ms. Jackson, Paula Deen terminated that General Manager and stated to Bubba Hiers, "if you think I have worked this hard to lose everything because of a piece of *****, you better think again." Paula Deen continued, "and now I am going to do something I have never done. I am going to put a woman in a man's job." Paula Deen gave Ms. Jackson six months to turn the restaurant from a failure to a success.


Upon her promotion to General Manager, Bubba Hiers stated to Ms. Jackson, "you're everything I've never wanted but everything I need-a woman to clean my business up." Mr. Hiers suggested that Ms. Jackson "take it (this comment] as a compliment."
19.

Ms. Jackson's ability to perform was doubted with repeated comments and laughter from
Mr. Schumacher and other male managers commenting, for example, that "she'II be down in a month." In six months, Paula Deen's directive was accomplished and Uncle Bubba's was earning a profit.
20.

For these money-saving management efforts, Karl Schumacher referred to Ms. Jackson as "almost Jewish," and Bubba Hiers referred to her as "my little Jew girl."

Now, you see mentioned Jews, let's see how you all feel about all of this now. Because when it comes to Jews you all would be praising what's going on. Whites are some real BS when it comes to their guilt and how they've treated Blacks. Since y'all can't deal with the embarrassment and responsibility you sit there and try and turn it on Blacks, when Blacks aren't even the one suing her a** lmao.


Cont'd with Jackson complaint file:

Read MFs Your business is run from the TOP DOWN.

The management staff of the corporate Defendants perceived a tightly integrated nature of the Paula Deen Family of Companies, evidenced in part by Lady & Sons Restaurant General Manager Dustin Walls communicating an apology across the corporate enterprise for threatening to fire all the "monkeys" in his kitchen, a reference to the African-American kitchen staff. Another General Manager communicated to a broader management audience his apparent apology for having exposed his fellow General Manager's racist comment and for having been too compassionate toward his employees.
28.

Paula Deen further stated in a managers' meeting that the Paula Deen Family of Companies was "one in the same business," stating further that "I owe just as much on this ****ing restaurant, as I do on that ****ing restaurant, so you need to work together."

40.

Ms. Jackson was subject to sexually harassing conduct by Bubba Hiers every single day Ms. Jackson came to work for over five (5) years. In addition to inescapable pornography he brought to the workplace, Bubba Hiers' harassing and abusive comments were often loud and without apparent concern for customers, vendors, staff or anyone else near him.
41.

Bubba Hiers is a frequent customer of pornography Web sites and would download and view such sites at work. In the small office he shared with Ms. Jackson, it was impossible for her to avoid viewing the pornography. Alternatively, he visited those Websites on the kitchen computer, often forgetting to log out whereupon other employees involuntarily shared his pornography adventure. In addition, the one email address shared by Ms. Jackson and Bubba Hiers frequently received pornographic material transmitted to Mr. Hiers by his friends or relatives that was unavoidably viewed by Ms. Jackson or her staff.
42.

On more than one occasion, Bubba Hiers requested that Ms. Jackson bring pictures of herself when she was young for him to view. He told her "you have nice legs" and that two other employees are "fat girls," commenting that (because of their weight) they did not need to be wearing capri pants or skirts; and commenting further, "I can't have them walking around like that." Neither did he approve of their arms which he considered fat, so he instituted a
requirement that female managers wear long sleeves.

43.

Bubba Hiers frequently visits strip clubs and would bring to the workplace numerous stories told to Ms.Jackson and other staff regarding the highlights of his visits to those clubs.
44.

Bubba Hiers commented to Ms. Jackson regarding a female employee who was married to a significantly younger man, 'lCan you imagine that man going to bed with her?"
45.

In Ms. Jackson's presence, Bubba Hiers commented to another female employee after she received dentures, "I bet your husband is going to like that."
46.

On another occasion, Bubba Hiers told a joke to the staff that described why men should have sex with women with flat heads because "you can sit your beer on top of her head while she is giving you a blow job."
47.

Bubba Hiers commented to Ms. Jackson and others that he would like to replace the staff at Uncle Bubba's restaurant with "Hooter's Girls."

461 days ago
68.

jaysnow000    

JCP, Kmart Sears are all going bankrupt..who cares

461 days ago
69.

AplMacLady    

RACIAL DISCRMINATION IN THE WORKPLACE

50.

Ms. Jackson, a Caucasian, white female, was subject to racially discriminatory conduct every single day she came to work.
51.


Paula Deen placed Ms. Jackson in charge of food and serving arrangements for the wedding of her brother Bubba Hiers in February 2007. When Ms. Jackson asked Ms. Deen what look the wedding should have, Ms. Deen replied, "I want a true southern plantation-style wedding." Asked by Ms. Jackson what type of uniforms she preferred servers to wear, Paula Deen stated, "Well what I would really like is a bunch of little ******s to wear long-sleeve white shirts, black shorts and black bow ties, you know in the Shirley Temple days, they used to tap
dance around." Paula Deen laughed and said "Now that would be a true southern wedding, wouldn't it? But we can't do that because the media would be on me about that.'' Ms. Jackson did not laugh, stating that "no, we can't do that;" a pregnant pause followed, and the meeting ended shortly thereafter. The same attitude prevailed with restaurant operations.
52.

At Uncle Bubba's restaurant, African-American staff persons are required to use the back entrance for all purposes, including picking up their checks. They were prohibited from using
the front entrance.

53.

African-American staff persons at Uncle Bubba's restaurant are required to use one restroom that is in the back of the restaurant and is not the customer restroom. White staff was allowed to use the customer bathroom.
54.

African-American staff persons stationed at the back of Uncle Bubba's restaurant are not allowed to go to the front of the restaurant.
55.

Ms. Jackson hired two African-American hostesses. Their position required them to be stationed in the front of the restaurant. Bubba Hiers complained repeatedly about one hostess being out front and she was later fired for allegedly stealing a white customer's purse. The police were called and the young woman was searched, but she was not arrested and no charges were brought. Mr. Hiers demanded that the other African-American hostess be moved to a position in the back of the restaurant where she could not be seen by customers.
56.

Ms. Jackson and her employees were surrounded in the workplace with the most vulgar and obscene racial comments, including the following:
a. Ms. Jackson was meeting with a vendor in her office at Uncle Bubba's restaurant when Bubba Hiers entered the office and slammed the door behind him, stating "I wish I could put all those ******s [in the kitchen] on a boat to Africa."

b. On approximately Friday, July 20, 2010, Bubba Hiers confronted an African­ American male kitchen staff person and repeatedly screamed at him, and physically and violently shook him, as set forth in detail in paragraph 60, below.
c. In Ms. Jackson's presence, Bubba Hiers said to his African-American security guard and driver, "don't you wish you could rub all the black off you and be like me?" The security guard responded, "I'm fine the way I am," whereupon Mr. Hiers replied that "you just look dirty, I bet you wish you could."
d. In the presence of Ms.Jackon and an Uncle Bubba's restaurant manager and a vendor, Bubba Hiers stated that "they should send President Obama to the oil spill in the Gulf [of Mexico] so he could ******-rig it.''
e. In the presence of a vendor who traps wildlife (e.g., raccoons) and Ms. Jackson,

Bubba Hiers stated, "you also got a bunch of coons in this kitchen you can trap." The kitchen was primarily staffed with African-Americans.
f. Bubba Hiers told jokes using the word "******" in front of the coordinator of a fundraising event at the Bethesda Boys Home. The coordinator, not employed by Defendants, expressed to Ms. Jackson her discomfort with Mr. Hiers and his language.
57.


Mr. Schumacher, on multiple occasions, told jokes or ridiculed the President of the

United States, using the word "******."


58.

In addition to being the personal target of sexually harassing behavior, Ms.Jackson suffered from having to experience the same degrading and humiliating behavior directed at her staff. Ms.Jackson also suffered from having to experience the racially discriminatory humiliation of her African-American staff. During her tenure, Ms. Jackson built a family of committed staff for whom she cared deeply. She was their supervisor and was responsible for providing them a safe work environment free from sexual and racial harassment. Despite many efforts to provide such a work environment, she was unable to do so. Bubba Hiers' conduct interfered with Ms. Jackson's relationships with the staff she called family and upon whom she relied to accomplish the business of running a restaurant, causing her immense personal emotional and physical distress. Employees came to her to complain and for help-help which
she was never able to fully provide despite seeking such help from managers and the attorney for the Paula Deen Family of Companies and from Paula Deen herself. Ms. Jackson was personally aggrieved and injured by the discriminatory harassment and abusive treatment of her employees.

VIOLENCE IN THE WORKPLACE

59.

During a meeting called by Bubba Hiers in the Uncle Bubba's restaurant kitchen one afternoon, Bubba Hiers began beating on his chest and challenging anyone and everyone in the kitchen to fight him. He screamed so loud that spit was coming out of his mouth, as he said "Come get some. Come on, you want a piece of me? Meet me on the dock you mother ****ers."
Ms. Jackson scanned the room in horror and saw her staff, recognizing the look of fear, disbelief, and helplessness in the eyes of individuals from the lowest working socioeconomic stratum of
the community who know personally outside the workplace the feeling of intimidation, violence and berating behavior. Mr. Hiers then stumbled out the back door to his truck and he was gone. Ms. Jackson's job was then, as it was many times after this incident, to control the damage so
that she could both comfort her staff, but also retain their services for the benefit of Paula Deen, Bubba Hiers and the restaurant.
60.

On July 20,2010, Ms. Jackson's report of a sexually harassing comment by a white staff person toward an African-American kitchen staff at Uncle Bubba's restaurant brought two African-American witnesses to the small office Ms. Jackson was required to share with Bubba Hiers. Seething with anger and red in the face with concern that the African-American male kitchen staff person might speak to someone about this incident, Mr. Heirs repeatedly screamed at him asking him what he saw. The witness' answer was "can I plead the 5th Amendment." Unsatisfied with that response, Mr. Hiers physically and violently shook him and stated, "**** your civil rights ... you work for me and my sister Paula Deen," saying further "you're not going to get me sued over some little bitch." Mr. Hiers proceeded to physically and violently shake this individual. Ms. Jackson was in the small office with both Mr. Hiers and this witness at the time. She and others nearby and in the kitchen feared for their physical safety, not knowing how far the physical violence might be taken by Mr. Hiers.
61.

The staff of Uncle Bubba's restaurant was in a constant state of fear awaiting Bubba

Hiers' arrival at the restaurant and any required interaction with him.
62.

The stress of repeatedly taking on the role of anticipating Bubba Hiers' violence, moderating it to the extent possible, and playing the go-between role with her staff caused Ms. Jackson enormous stress- stress that caused chest pains and evolved into panic attacks that
would often begin when Bubba Hiers' truck pulled into the parking lot or upon appearance of the white cup-the styrofoam cup poured almost full with whiskey at approximately 10:00 a.m. whereupon Bubba Hiers began his day of drinking and abusive behavior. When the truck pulled up or the white cup appeared, staff would scatter, leaving Ms. Jackson to manage Bubba Hiers.
63.

The outrageous and unlawful conduct thrust upon Ms. Jackson's staff was extremely distressing to Ms. Jackson and others. After cleaning up UncJe Bubba's restaurant upon her arrival, she staffed it with individuals who were poor but they were honest, hard-working and committed to making the restaurant a success. Ms. Jackson was responsible for providing them a safe and lawful work environment, but despite Ms. Jackson's repeated complaints to every level of management and ownership, she was unable to provide that environment.

COMPLAINTS OF HARASSMENT AND ABUSIVE TREATMENT

64.

For over five (5) years, Ms. Jackson made numerous and frequent complaints of racial and sexual harassment and abusive treatment to the highest levels of corporate management and ownership, including: Defendants Paula Deen and Bubba Hiers; Paula Deen Enterprises Chief Operation Officer (COO) and Director of Operations Theresa Fueger; the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for the Paula Deen Family of Companies, Karl Schumacher; and to the attorney for Defendants, James P. Gerard. The conduct was universally known and tolerated
within the ownership and management levels of the corporate enterprise, and by corporate counsel and no remedy was offered.
65.


Ms. Jackson's pleas for relief from the harassment to senior management also took the form of requests made to Ms. Fueger and Mr. Shumacher for a transfer anywhere in the company
-even if it required a cut in pay- but she was told by them that Paula Deen would never let her leave Uncle Bubba's restaurant.
66.

The same request by Ms. Jackson was made directly to Paula Deen who told Ms.Jackson she could never leave Uncle Bubba's restaurant.
67.

Corporate counsel James P. Gerard would frequently call Ms. Jackson at home in the evenings and on the weekend to discuss and sympathize with the discriminatory conditions and abusive treatment she confronted.
68.

The harassment and abuse was severe in its form and pervasive in its application, and despite her numerous and frequent complaints and despite the continuing knowledge of the behavior by the highest levels of management, ownership and corporate counsel, and despite the patent illegality of the conduct, no remedy was forthcoming.

DISCHARGE FROM EMPLOYMENT

69.

In the Spring and Summer of2010, Ms. Jackson's conditions of employment became intolerable, having complained repeatedly and for years of harassment, discrimination and
abusive treatment to the highest levels of management and ownership to no effect.

70.

In March 20 I 0, the General Manager of Lady & Sons Restaurant General Manager Dustin Walls, who is one of the best friends ofPaula Deen's son Jaime Deen, threatened to fire all the "monkeys" in the kitchen, referring specifically to the African-American kitchen staff. Employees throughout the corporate enterprise became aware of the comment. Ms. Jackson's staff at Uncle Bubba's restaurant became aware of the comment, placing upon Ms. Jackson further significant personnel management challenges. At Paula Deen's direction, Mr. Walls visited Ms. Deen at her home whereupon she "slapped him on the wrist." She did not want to do that and she regretted it, but she was concerned that otherwise the NAACP would become involved. According to Karl Schumacher, "we have to show we are doing something."
71.

The workplace culture created by Defendants is further evidenced by the initiative bringing in human resource consultants shortly after the "monkey" incident. Lady & Sons Restaurant General Manager Dustin Walls was so rude to the consultant that she stopped her interview with him. Bubba Hiers did not show up for his interview with the consultant.

She tolerated everything that went on and was a participant in some instances. She's racist, her sons are racists and sexists and that's WHY her sons did and said what they said. I'm glad her a** getting ripped to shreds

461 days ago
70.

Sandra     

PLEASE no more Paula coverage!!! Sick of her and of hearing about her troubles !!!!

461 days ago
71.

LC    

Guess JCP didn't want to get any customers back after all...

461 days ago
72.

jj    

QVC, u r next !!!

hahahaha

461 days ago
73.

R. Hall    

All you retailers that drop Paula, be prepared. The public support for her will bring about boycotts to all of you!

461 days ago
74.

LA    

maybe they will leave Tiger alone LOL

461 days ago
75.

Mikey    

I didn't know n!ggas shopped at JCP. Interesting.

461 days ago
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