Yes, you guys, Rachel Lindsay is willing to forgive.
But that doesn’t mean the podcast host and former reality star thinks The Bachelor franchise can afford to forget all that’s recently transpired.
Quite the opposite, in fact.
Over the past several weeks, Lindsay and host Chris Harrison have been front and center in a scandal that has completely overshadowed everything happening on screen during Season 25.
It all started, of course, with suitor Rachael Kirkconnell and her questionable history of actions and behavior.
Via re-circulated photos on social media, Kirkconnell was seen attending a plantation-themed party in 2018… wearing Native American garb… and Liking images of the Confederate Flag.
Kirkconnell’s subsequently apologized and labeled this missteps as “racist and wrong.”
Harrison, however, jumped into scalding hot water about a month ago when he chose to withhold judgment during an interview on Extra with Lindsay, even asking folks to show Kirkconnell “grace and compassion.”
It was then Harrison’s turn to issue mulitple mea culpas, while even saying he would step aside temporarily as Bachelor host.
Lindsay said this was the right call and has since said the franchise should be placed on hold until producers basically figure their racist s–t out.
Fast forward to Thursday morning and Harrison again apologizing for his previous remarks.
“It was a mistake,” Harrison told Michael Strahan on ABC. “I made a mistake. I am an imperfect man. I made a mistake. And I own that.”
“I am saddened and shocked at how insensitive I was in that interview with Rachel Lindsay. I didn’t speak for my heart, that is to say I stand against all forms of racism.
“I’m sorry to Rachel Lindsay and I’m sorry to the Black community.”
Lindsay has been forced to delete her Instagram account due to all the harassment she’s received online, which prompted Harrison to add on Good Morning America:
“To anyone who Is throwing hate at Rachel Lindsay please stop.
I am not a victim here, I made a mistake and I own that.
“Racism, oppression, this is a dynamic problem and they take work and I am committed to that work.”
Pretty good, right?
The producer later revealed that he is working with “a race educator and strategist” so that he can gain “experience and knowledge” in the area of race relations.
“I plan to be back and I want to be back,” Harrison added on GMA of returniing as host, emphasizing that he is “committed to progress, not just for myself, also for the franchise.”
Did Harrison come across as sincere?
Not to Strahan, who said on air after the interview concluded:
“His apology is his apology, but it felt like I got nothing more than a surface response on any of this…
“Obviously he’s a man who wants to clearly stay on the show.”
What about Lindsay, however? How did she feel about Harrison’s latest apology?
“I do accept the apology,” Lindsay told Extra’s Billy Bush on Thursday.
“And I think it’s important for me to say that because I haven’t really talked about, you know, Chris and the statement because I’m not trying to make this a Chris vs. Rachel.”
Lindsay added that Harrison previously apologized just to her, as well.
“We need to move forward,” the Bachelor Happy Hour cohost added yesterday, acknowledging Harrison’s willingness to say he’s sorry multiple times.
“And for me, for us to move forward, I need to accept the apology, so we can all be better from this situation, which is what we want.”
Lindsay went on to say she appreciated how Harrison’s pointed out the bullying she’s been a victim of… and asked these trolls and loser too cut it out.
As for what ought to happen next?
“In 2020, it was all about people realizing things that they hadn’t before.
“It was a level of awareness that was created that people hadn’t necessarily recognized,” Lindsay said of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“And out of that also came conversations that we should be having whether they’re tough, uncomfortable, whatever it may be. Isn’t that what this should be as well?
“I think it’s important that we continue the conversation, we continue to move forward.
“And I think that’s the best thing that we can hope for out of all of this