Rachel Lindsay Shares Why She’s Accepting Chris Harrison’s Apology: “We Need to Move Forward”

Rachel Lindsay, the first Black lead of The Bachelor franchise, explained why she's accepting Chris Harrison's apology after he defended Rachael Kirkconnell's past behavior.

By Kaitlin Reilly Mar 05, 2021 12:47 AMTags

Rachel Lindsay is choosing to move on after Chris Harrison's apology over controversial comments he made about The Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell's past actions

On March 4, the longtime host of The Bachelor franchise spoke to Good Morning America's Michael Strahan about the backlash he received for an Extra interview with Lindsay, in which he defended Kirkconnell and cited the "woke police" as the ones being offended by her behavior. Kirkconnell, who is still in the running for Matt James' heart on the current season of The Bachelor, came under fire after after photos of her attending a 2018 party themed after the antebellum south surfaced online.

Shortly after the interview with Lindsay, the host issued an apology, saying he regretted making comments that he said "perpetuates racism," and would step away from the franchise for the time being.

At the time, Lindsay said she was hurt by Harrison's comments, as well as his initial apology to her and those offended by his comments. As she said on her podcast Higher Learning with Rachel Lindsay and Van Lathan, "It wasn't until people start talking, people start demanding for different things, that he then apologized to me and then apologized publicly."

Rachel Lindsay's Bachelorette Party Weekend

Now, following Harrison's interview on Good Morning America, in which he also apologized to Lindsay personally over bullying from fans who blame her for Harrison's temporary departure, Lindsay is ready to move on.

Kelsey McNeal/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images

She explained to Extra's Billy Bush, "I do accept that and I think it's important for me to say that because we need to move forward. 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."

She continued, "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. 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? It's bigger than just The Bachelor, it's bigger than just a reality TV show. There are a lot of issues that have come up because of this interview, and 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."

Exactly how The Bachelor franchise will change and grow in the wake of these issues being brought to the surface remains to be seen. 

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