Rachel Lindsay is speaking her truth about the “Bachelor” franchise in a newly-published op-ed for New York Magazine.
The 36-year-old candidly spoke about her time on “The Bachelor”, “The Bachelorette” and shared that she exited the “Bachelor Happy Hour” podcast last month because she was “exhausted from defending myself against a toxic fandom.”
“The franchise has spent 19 years cultivating a toxic audience. They have constantly given it a product it wants: a midwestern/southern white, blonde, light-eyed Christian. Not all viewers are like that,” she wrote. “My Higher Learning co-host and I have divided it – there is a Bachelor Nation, and there is a Bachelor Klan.”
Lindsay continued: “Bachelor Klan is hateful, racist, misogynistic, xenophobic, and homophobic. They are afraid of change. They are afraid to be uncomfortable. They are afraid when they get called out.”
The former “Bachelorette” also stated in the piece that her headline-making conversation with Chris Harrison caused the fandom that “had always had a complicated relationship with” her to further “turn against” her.
Turning to her time on the reality dating series, Lindsay recalled the moment she felt “exploited” during her hometown date with runner-up Peter Kraus.
The former “Bachelorette” met up with Kraus’ friends in Madison, Wisconsin – which included two Black men and two white women.
“They separated us – Peter got to talk to his homeboys, and I was with the women, who talked about having ‘mixed babies’ and what it was like to be an interracial couple. I couldn’t believe it,” Lindsay stated.
“I’m Black. I have interracial couples in my family. I’m old enough to understand what I’m entering into and the difficulties that come with it. I felt exploited,” she added.
“If anything, that situation turned me off of Peter because I couldn’t see myself hanging out with them,” continued Lindsay. “They were nice, but it was so contrived. The producers really thought, How great! All these mixed couples can come together. They were only looking at the optics of the situation.”
Shortly after her op-ed was published, the TV personality shared a message on her Instagram feed that stated the outlet had misrepresented her story with the cover headline they chose, which read “Oops, I Blew Up The Bachelor.”
In a statement to ET Canada, a New York Magazine spokesperson said they’re “incredibly proud to have published Rachel Lindsay’s powerful, first-person story, detailing her experience with ‘The Bachelor’ franchise. We were sorry to learn that she is unhappy with the cover line (which was not meant as a direct quote), but it shouldn’t take away from the candor and bravery of her words in the piece.”
Read Lindsay’s full candid piece with the New York Magazine here.