Chris Harrison is the host of the famous reality dating show, The Bachelor and the bachelorette. This past week, the former first black bachelorette Rachel Lindsay interviewed him, and his response has caused a major backlash and media frenzy.
Rachel asks him about a frontrunner on this season’s show Rachel Kirkconnell, who has come under fire for having photos of her at an antebellum plantation party, wearing an old confederate hoopskirt and posing with confederate flags in the back of her pictures (now deleted.) These photos have been going around the internet for a month or so, but what Chris says to Rachel is just unbelievable. These next quotes are a word for word what he said in this Extra interview.
Harrison told “Extra” correspondent and former star of “The Bachelorette,” Rachel Lindsay that Kirkconnells pictures were a long time ago and spoke out against cancel culture. “I saw a picture of her at a sorority party five years ago, and that’s it. Like, boom,” Harrison said, adding, “I’m like, ‘Really?’ “Lindsay replied, “The picture was from 2018 at an Old South antebellum party. That’s not a good look.” Harrison replied, “Well, Rachel, was it a good look in 2018? Or, is it not a good look in 2021? Because there’s a big difference.” “It’s not a good look ever,” Lindsay said.
“If I went to that party, what would I represent at that party?” “You’re 100% right in 2021,” Harrison then said. “That was not the case in 2018. And again, I’m not defending Rachel. I know that I don’t know; 50 million people did that in 2018. That was the type of party that a lot of people went to. And again, I’m not defending it. I didn’t go to it.”
This response first is just completely ignorant, racist and upsetting, a clear example of how white men in power positions see racism as “cancel culture” vs seeing it as something that in the past fought to keep slavery in the US.
Chris will be stepping down from his role as the host of the Television show and will not be hosting the “after the rose” episode at the season finale of this year’s Bachelor.
The Contestants of prior seasons all came together to put out a joint statement saying, “We had the opportunity to be a part of one of the most diverse casts in the history of the franchise,” they noted. “We stand united in denouncing any racist behavior and any defense thereof. We also stand united with the women of Season 25 of The Bachelor, who have denounced the same; moreover, we stand united with Rachel Lindsay, who has led the way.” This statement and the petition online making Harrison resign from hosting most likely brought on his temporary leave from the show.