Toronto Diary
2 min

An open letter to Paula Deen

Dear Paula Deen,

So I heard you finally came out as an adult living with type 2 diabetes recently. Good for you for being honest! I’m sure it’s a personal issue and I’m happy you’re being honest about it.

Well, almost honest.

Paula, listen — can I call you Paula? Mz Deen seems far too informal, and Morbidly Obese Sugar Peddler might be on the polar opposite end of that spectrum. Let’s settle with Paula here. To be honest, I’ve watched your show in the past with a queasy sense of morbid curiosity. No rational person would ever willingly ingest bread pudding with Krispy Kreme doughnuts, and who in their right mind would eat something called “fried butter balls"? Repulsive, sure, but like any good trainwreck, I sat and watched, peering out with trepidation through crisscrossed fingers.

And then you announce that you have type 2 diabetes. While modern medicine has made it a manageable illness, a major contributing factor to this disease is excess fat. See where I’m going with this? But hey, you’re an adult. You’re allowed to make your own decisions as long as you’re willing to live with the consequences, right?

Here’s where things go to shit: it was also revealed that you allegedly knew about your illness for three years. You didn’t just find this out now. You’ve known you have an illness that the grossly unhealthy foods you cook, sell and glamourize contribute to for three. Goddamn. Years. 

But wait! It gets worse! In light of your revelation, you’ve announced that you will continue to make the sugary, fatty, greasy, fried food that made you a star and probably did untold damage to your body. Sure, you’re going to also remind your audience to eat in “moderation,” but where was that sense of moderation when you created the Lady’s Brunch Burger, a hamburger topped with eggs and bacon and sandwiched between two Krispy Kreme doughnuts?

Here’s the kicker in all of this: after coming out as a diabetic, your first move was to sign a deal with a drug company, sponsoring diabetes medication. Here’s the thing about that: I can handle you creating a show where you make a bunch of unhealthy, albeit tasty food. I’m saddened and confused when you continue to do so, knowing the lifestyle has caused you great bodily damage and you’re selling that lifestyle to others who can potentially see the same damaging results as you can. But jumping onto a diabetes medication three years after figuring out that what you’re selling has serious health issues?

Fuck you.

It is morally repugnant and hypocritical to glamourize the cause of a problem and then market the solution. You cannot spend three years knowingly marketing food that can potentially lead to diabetes and then turn around and sell people the treatment for when they’re diagnosed as such. This is what is known as “Holy shit, what are you doing?” You just cannot be this much of an opportunistic asshole, especially when people’s health and lives are on the line.

You just can’t fucking do this, Paula Deen. Otherwise, karma will come back and bite you in the ass. Or at least hit you in the face with a frozen ham. 

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