Bachelor's Rachael Kirkconnell apologizes and admits her 'ignorance was racist' as she breaks silence for past behavior
BACHELOR’S Rachael Kirkconnell apologized and admitted her “ignorance was racist” following past controversial behavior coming to light.
The Georgia native broke her silence after resurfaced pictures exposed "racist" conduct including attending an “Old South” party that has deep ties to the confederacy back in 2018.
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The reality contestant wrote on Thursday: “While there have been rumors circulating, there have also been truths that have come to light that I need to address.
"I hear you, and I’m here to say I was wrong. At one point, I didn’t recognize how offensive and racist my actions were, but that doesn’t excuse them."
She continued in the lengthy Instagram apology: “My age or when it happened does not excuse anything.
"They are not acceptable or okay in any sense. I was ignorant, but my ignorance was racist.”
“I am sorry to the communities and individuals that my actions harmed and offended. I am ashamed about my lack of education, but it is no one’s responsibility to educate me," she added.
The 24-year-old graphic designer admitted she is "learning" and "will continue to learn how to be antiracist."
"It’s important to speak up in the moment and not after you’re called out.
“If you are a person who doesn’t understand the offense in question, I urge you to learn from my mistakes and encourage you to use them as a teachable moment," she concluded her passionate plea.
Since the premiere of Matt James' season, this year's frontrunner was slammed when multiple TikTok's went viral that showed Rachael's controversial behavior.
She was labeled “racist” by many fans when resurfaced photos from 2018 showing her attending an “Old South” plantation party in an Antebellum dress.
The contestant also got backlash for dressing up in a Native American costume and engaging in a series of controversial social media activity.
Host Chris Harrison attempted to defend Rachael this week however, his "offensive" comments caused even more outrage within Bachelor Nation.
In an interview with former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay – the first Black lead in franchise history – the host said: “We all need to have a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion.
“Because I've seen some stuff online… again, this 'judge, jury, executioner' thing where people are just tearing this girl's life apart."
Following his comments, thousands of fans demanded Chris be FIRED as the longtime – and only – host of the franchise.
In addition to Chris' controversy trending on Twitter all week, a mass petition with 25,000 signatures and counting urged the show to drop its host of 20 years from the franchise.
Kit Keenan – who is vying alongside Rachael for Matt James' heart – took to Instagram earlier today to share her own thoughts.
She said: "Yes, 2020 has spurred greater awareness of white privilege. That doesn't mean racist behavior of the past should be excused nor does it mean our work here is done."
"For people of color within the bachelor franchise, viewers, and beyond, I see you and I hear you. Silence is complicity."
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