Paula Deen is using an unusual legal argument to hit back at an ex-employee who's suing her for discrimination, E! News reports.
Lawyers for the embattled celebrity chef are citing the U.S. Supreme Court's June 26 decision striking down California's Prop 8, which originally banned gay marriage in that state, as a reason a court should dismiss Lisa Jackson's federal lawsuit against her and her brother Earl "Bubba" Hiers.
Jackson, a former restaurant worker at the duo's Uncle Bubba's Seafood and Oyster House in Savannah, filed a racial harassment complaint last year alleging Deen and Hiers subjected her to racial harassment and a hostile work environment by, among other things, making racist remarks about the restaurant's African-American employees.
When word surfaced two weeks ago that Deen had admitted in a May deposition in the case that she had used the N-word and told jokes perceived as racist, the Food Network decided not to renew her contract and a slew of the famed cook's sponsors dumped her, causing the collapse of her multimillion-dollar business empire.
Deen's legal eagles have subsequently been hitting back hard against Jackson, charging in a brief that one of the plaintiff's core claims -- that she was personally offended by Paula's utterance of the racial slur since she had biracial nieces -- was a lie. They cited evidence that Jackson's nieces are actually those of her partner's and that the girls are Hispanic, not African-American.
Deen originally filed her motion to dismiss on Dec. 18, 2012, but filed this supplemental brief on Monday in a U.S. District Court in Georgia in light of the Supreme Court's historic ruling.
Deen's attorneys noted the opinion of Chief Justice John Roberts on the Hollingsworth vs. Perry Prop 8 case, in which he wrote that in order for a person to have standing to sue, they must prove they have "suffered a concrete and particularized injury that is fairly traceable to the challenged conduct."
The TV personality's camp interpreted that to mean that "in other words, for a federal court to have authority under the Constitution to settle a dispute, the party before it must seek a remedy for a personal and tangible harm."
In Deen's view, given the fact that Jackson is white, she doesn't have standing to bring the case because she herself didn't suffer personally from race discrimination.
No word when the court will rule on the motion.
Lawyers for Deen and Jackson were unavailable for comment.
Amber Heard, who?
Johnny Depp, 50, had lip locking on his agenda Monday night, but his kissing companion wasn't who you'd expect, People reports.
Leaving apparent gal pal Heard behind, "The Lone Ranger" star -- who announced his split from longtime partner, Vanessa Paradis a year ago -- went in for a kiss on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" with the late-night talk-show host, 45, after Kimmel said, "You have this very handsome, this -- Let's just be honest and say beautiful face."
Depp put his head down and nodded horizontally before going in for a kiss on Kimmel's cheek. He then sat down for a moment, got back up and went in for a peck on the lips as Kimmel waved his hand in front of his face and uttered a "Wow!"
After Depp said, "I'm done, I'm done," a still-in-shock Kimmel said, "I've lost my train of thought."
But Depp apparently wasn't done, as he went in for one more tiny smooch.
"That's more kissing than I did in all of high school," Kimmel said with a laugh.
Added the actor: "Me, too."
A surprised Kimmel then said, "I don't believe that. Is that true? ... You were not popular in high school with the girls? Or talk-show hosts?"
Depp then admitted with a chuckle, "I do have a thing for talk-show hosts, obviously. But, no, no, in high school I was not -- no, I was kind of a long-haired ..."
Kimmel, who suggested classmates were possibly "intimidated" by Depp, went on to say kiddingly, "You were a scumbag or a loser or something like that?"
It's a girl for Colin Hanks and Samantha Bryant.
"Ms. Charlotte Bryant Hanks has decided to join us," the actor, 35, tells People. "She's as happy and healthy as we are overjoyed and tired."
The couple, who married in 2010, are already parents to daughter Olivia Jane, 2 1/2.
The former "Dexter" star -- who recently appeared in a two-episode turn on NCIS -- and his wife announced the pregnancy in April by stepping out for the premiere of Tom Hanks' Broadway play "Lucky Guy."
With the show ending its run this week, the timing is perfect for the elder Hanks and wife Rita Wilson to spend some quality time with their newest granddaughter.
"They cannot wait to just dote on this kid with every single fiber of their being," his son joked after the birth of Olivia.