Between packing up my office, moving to a new university, and participating in the protests related to Trayvon Martin’s murder, I missed an important diss-able moment here: doggin out PAULA DEEN.
Black folk on twitter kept me afloat during that time and I’m not even on twitter. And in case anyone was confused about this, yes, we are laughing AT Paula Deen, not with her. Everything about her— her dishes, her health, her children, her Bubba— got publicly dissed on every social network site imaginable. It was the most lovely way to treat a white supremacist. The memes alone inspire deep pride for me. It made it that much easier to dismiss all those “liberals” saying black people were too sensitive or blowing things out of proportion. If my recent trip to Savannah, Georgia is any indication, then it seems safe to say that social networking brought down Deen: every time I passed a Paula Deen Tour Bus, it was E-M-P-T-Y! Personally, I think all of those very public disses of Paula Deen should be a model for how we treat anyone who thinks we should dress as/be slaves, serve them sweet potato pie (and everything else), and/or maintain confusion about the N-bomb. Descriptions of Deen’s racism are hardly over, including the ongoing testimonies of black women in the recent NYTimes who Deen exploited while thiefing their recipes and expertise as cooks. It seems like Deen’s empire really was run like a plantation: the exploitation of black labor, ingenuity, and skill while she sat back, rich and fat, grinning for the public as if she had herself pioneered something. A plantation, indeed.
Like I said, Black Twitter was a thing of beauty, but my heart goes out to AfricanoBoi who gave the best commentary on Paula Deen yet! For all non-black folk, no, you can not laugh at this but you do get to hear how WE HEAR white supremacy. For all black folk: yes, you can roll all over the floor and laugh your hearts away!!! I know I still am. Sometimes, laughing back and talking back go hand-in-hand because, given all that is coming to light about Deen’s labor practices, AfricanoBoi might not be exaggerating that much.