Paula Deen just received a very gracious endorsement from none other than right-wing pundit Glenn Beck. Beck — dressed in full-on Boy Scout gear — went on an epic rant where he compared the sweeping backlash to Paula Deen's racial slurs to the persecution of Martin Luther King Jr. Seriously.
Beck said that while he "doesn't know her heart" and that no one will ever know if Paula Deen is actually racist or not, the decision by the Food Network (and Walmart and Target) to toss out Deen is a completely panicked reaction to the stifling era of political correctness we live in.
So here's where it gets odd. After Beck defends Deen and scrutinizes the public's perceived exaggeration to Deen's casual use of racial slurs, he then moves into "suppression" territory and tries to make the claim that Deen is the latest victim of free -speech oppression.
"I stand on the principle. And when you go down the road of suppression — suppression, discouraging people from speaking their minds — striking terror in their hearts and being a slave to political correctness by making them all go away, you're engaging in McCarthyism. And we regress as a society and become less free (emphasis added)."
Yes, Glenn Beck did use the term slave as a defense to Paula Deen's historic use of a slavery-era insult.
Beck continued on his "you have the right to say whatever you want" platform for a few minutes and then landed on the Martin Luther King gem. Said Beck, "Where would we be if Martin Luther King didn't speak and challenge segregation? Where would we be if everyone in the world thought in a box?"
Hmm. Just one teeny tiny problem. Paula Deen's sponsors don't claim that Deen can't say horrible, offensive things. Of course she can. She has freedom of speech! Deen just can't say those things and remain in a branding partnerships with the corporations. None of Deen's citizen liberties are threatened, just her multi-million dollar economic standing.
You can watch Glenn Beck's entire defense-of-Paula-Deen rant below:
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