Rice wrote a brief defense of Deen on her Facebook page on Friday, then engaged in further discussion with her fans, many of whom wrote to express their dismay that Rice would defend the chef.
Deen has been embroiled in a scandal stemming from a court deposition in which she admitted to having a history of using racial epithets. Despite a public apology, Deen has lost her contract with
She goes on to write, "In more forgiving times, we didn't ask our crude, vulgar self made achievers to be perfect, or politically correct or to have a faultless cultural or religious pedigree. But times have changed."