Paula Deen's two sons Jamie and Bobby -- who have appeared with the TV chef on various shows -- are vigorously defending their mother following the backlash triggered by her recent admission in a deposition that she has used the N-word in the past.
"Our mother was under oath asked in a deposition to pour over her entire life and to admit whether or not she had ever heard or used this word, and it broke her heart to have to answer truthfully and say yes, that she had," Bobby Deen told
CNN's Chris Cuomo.
"But the important thing here is for people to know that that is not her heart..." Bobby added in his interview for CNN's morning show New Day. "We were raised in a family with love and of faith and a house where God lived. And neither one of our parents ever taught us to be bigoted towards any other person for any reason."
He continued his defense of his embattled mother, who lost her contract with Food Network last week over the controversy and was dropped Monday as the spokesperson for pork producer Smithfield Foods. "This is so saddening to me because our mother is one of the most compassionate, good hearted, empathetic people that you'd ever meet. And these accusations are very hurtful to her and it's very sad. And frankly, I'm disgusted by the entire thing because it began as extortion and it has become character assassination," he said.
Jamie praised his mom for the way she's handled the backlash amid a media frenzy. "There are opportunists and my mom has admitted, and she has apologized -- and as a person, what more can you do," he said.