If you want a clinic in how not to handle a brand crisis, take a look at how Paula Deen has dealt with the racism charges against her in the last couple of days. As Mike Paul (“The Reputation Doctor“) explained on my America Weekend show today, she needed advice from a public relations perspective instead of a legal one. He also pointed out that the brands she’s associated with are now going to consider their own reputations in deciding whether to stick with her or drop her (as The Food Network did yesterday). And I asked Paul exactly what Deen should have done to save her from the downward career spiral she’s now in.

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Here’s a column I wrote last year about Deen’s ethics in keeping her diabetes secret for 3 years while continuing to promote fatty, butter-rich cooking.