Chris Harrison Off ‘The Bachelor’ After Defending Racist Contestant

Craig Sjodin/ABC

Chris Harrison is “stepping aside for a period of time” from The Bachelor after defending Rachel Kirkconnell’s racist social posts

At what level do you lastly simply cancel The Bachelor? After watching white individuals fall in love for nearly twenty years and the franchise needing a racial reckoning within the U.S. to lastly forged a Black star, longtime host Chris Harrison declares he’s lastly “stepping aside” from his internet hosting duties on the present after making a lot of racist feedback this week.

The backstory is: Earlier this week, Rachel Kirkconnell, a contestant — and frontrunner — on the Matt James’ season of The Bachelor, was known as out for outdated social media posts wherein she wearing Native American apparel for a dressing up get together and attended an “Old South” antebellum plantation-themed get together in 2018. Kirkconnell has since apologized for these racist social posts, however Harrison went on Extra on Tuesday, February 9, 2021 and in an interview with Rachel Lindsay — the primary Black Bachelorette — he went to nice lengths to defend Kirkconnell’s racist habits.

Using phrases like “the woke police,” telling individuals they need to have “a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion” for Kirkconnell, and even claiming that plantation-themed events have been extraordinarily “popular” in 2018, the interview was an absolute prepare wreck. Harrison basically simply spent all 13 minutes of the interview defending somebody’s proper to be racist.

Harrison apologized afterwards saying he was improper for “speaking in a manner that perpetuates racism,” however Lindsay says his apology wasn’t sufficient. “During that conversation, his privilege was on display. He never gave me room to talk, and he never gave me room to share my perspective. He wasn’t trying to hear it, he was just trying to be heard,” Lindsay later mentioned throughout an episode of her podcast.

All week there have been requires Harrison to be fired and on Saturday, February 13, 2021 — Harrison introduced he was “stepping aside” from the franchise, or no less than for the remainder of the present season.

“I have spent the last few days listening to the pain my words have caused, and I am deeply remorseful. My ignorance did damage to my friends, colleagues and strangers alike. I have no one to blame but myself for what I said and the way I spoke,” he wrote in an announcement.

“By excusing historical racism, I defended it,” Harrison continued. “I invoked the term ‘woke police,’ which is unacceptable. I am ashamed over how uninformed I was. I was so wrong.”

“To the Black community, to the BIPOC community: I am so sorry. My words were harmful. I am listening, and I truly apologize for my ignorance and any pain it caused you,” he added. “I want to give my heartfelt thanks to the people from these communities who I’ve had enlightening conversations with over the past few days, and I am so grateful to those who have reached out to help me on my path to anti-racism.”

“The historic season of The Bachelor should not be marred or overshadowed by my mistakes or diminished by my actions. To that end, I have consulted with Warner Bros. and ABC and will be stepping aside for a period of time and will not join for the “After the Final Rose” particular,” he continued.

Interestingly, he’s “stepping aside” and never “being fired.” Since Kirkconnell’s social media posts surfaced, the 25 BIPOC contestants from James’ season issued an announcement through Instagram, denouncing “any defense of racism.”

It’s unclear how lengthy Harrison will likely be off the franchise or if he’ll come again for a future season. Seems prefer it’s well past time to make this “stepping aside,” everlasting.

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