Oprah Winfrey has had an incredibly busy week. In addition to shooting her exclusive interview with Lindsay Lohan post-rehab, she’s also promoting her role in the upcoming film The Butler.
During an interview with Entertainment Tonight, the media mogul finally addressed the Paula Deen controversy directly. The former Food Network personality was a guest on Oprah’s Next Chapter back in March 2012.
That episode involved Winfrey spending the night at Deen’s Georgia home, so it was only natural for ET to inquire about the OWN network honcho’s thoughts on the chef’s N-word debacle.
Winfrey told the entertainment show, “In the very first days I tried to reach her and then I decided to stay out of it as I saw it blowing up. In time she will be fine. For me, it all just felt kind of sad.”
She does predict a comeback for the Southern cooking expert though. The host said that everyone needs to let the “dust settle” and hopefully, she can have a “real conversation” with Deen about the racial slur in the future.
While Winfrey doesn’t experience blatant racism to her face anymore, she says she does experience it indirectly in the workplace.
She shared, “It shows up for me if I’m in a boardroom or situations where I’m the only woman or I’m the only African-American person within a hundred mile radius. I can see in the energy of the people there, they don’t sense that I should be holding one of those seats. I can sense that. But I can never tell, ‘Is it racism? Is it sexism?'”
Now that she has officially given her opinion on the subject, don’t expect Winfrey to keep commenting on Deen.
When Extra asked similar questions to ET about the controversy, Stedman Graham’s longtime girlfriend responded with a laugh, “Oh my god! I don’t have anything to do with Paula Deen. She is not the first white lady to use the N-word! Good lord!”
The queen of all media has spoken and she’s done with Deen.