Usually, it’s the contestants that fall into trouble on The Bachelor, but this time the controversy has grown so big it’s got Chris Harrison in its clutches. On Wednesday, The Bachelor host issued an apology for “perpetuating racism” on social media after coming to the defense of Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell after photos emerged of her attending an antebellum plantation-themed fraternity formal in 2018. Harrison initially defended Kirkconnell in an interview on Extra with the first Black Bachelorette, Rachel Lindsay, saying that Kirkconnell was being “thrown to the wolves” by the public. “While I do not speak for Rachael Kirkconnell, my intentions were simply to ask for grace in offering her an opportunity to speak on her own behalf,” wrote Harrison. “What I now realize I have done is cause harm by wrongly speaking in a manner that perpetuates racism, and for that I am so deeply sorry.” Harrison went on to apologize to Lindsay specifically for “not listening to her better on a topic she has firsthand knowledge of” and promised to “do better” in the future. Kirkconnell, who’s involved in multiple race-related scandals, is still very much in the running to be betrothed to Matt James, who happens to be the first Black Bachelor in franchise history. Well, the hometown dates sure will be interesting this year, won’t they?
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