It was a polarizing study of many things Southern: race, intelligence, unhealthy cooking. Paula Deen's defenders, numerous in the South, rose up en masse, as if a religious figurehead had been verbally attacked. Her dissenters were just as vocal.
This week, a columnist in the National Review has penned a piece that -- let's be kind here -- takes Deen's opponents and the "liberal media" to task. He also defends the South and its economic and political advances, though he conveniently downplays the South's firm struggles in areas such as public education.
The author, Lee Habeeb, writes, "Where did the media elite’s sense of outrage come from? It’s simple, actually. To admit that the South had changed would mean letting go of their own cultural and moral superiority, of their sense of regional superiority with respect to the issue of race. Media and academic elites believe that, but for proper adult supervision, the South will return to its racist roots and that they alone can protect helpless black southerners from the perfidy rooted in white southerners’ DNA."
It's another chapter in a story that wasn't that big in the first place. The real issue isn't Deen; it's the health of Southerners who too often eat the buttery, fat-filled foods that Deen has long promoted.
-- Phillip Tutor