The Bachelorette may not allow phones or computers during filming, but there’s no controlling what the contestants do before the show. As a result, the franchise has faced a number of controversies — like last year on Rachel Lindsay’s season of The Bachelorette, when Lee Garrett had to answer for racist tweets during an episode of Men Tell All. Now, a contestant on the current Bachelorette season is being forced to do the same.
Everything started earlier this week when HuffPost published a report about one of Becca Kufrin’s suitors, Garrett Yrigoyen — who also happened to get her fist impression rose — and his apparent history of liking social media posts that “mock trans people, undocumented immigrants, left-wing women and one Parkland high school student.”
— Ashley Spivey (@AshleySpivey) May 24, 2018
He had previously been called out by Ashley Spivey, a former Bachelor contestant, but the HuffPost article resulted in further media coverage, eventually prompting a response from Becca.
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In an interview with E! News, Becca said she’s “heard a little bit” about the controversy in the past couple of days. “I’ve just been so busy traveling around the country with press that I haven’t really been able to read too much up on it, but everyone is entitled to their own opinions, and at the end of the day I wanted to go on this journey to open up myself and have people see my love story unfold and I would hope that they would stay open and respect me but also stay open and respect these 28 guys that went along on the journey with me.”
Becca continued, keeping with a similar sentiment. “People form their own opinions, but at the end of the day, I know who I am and my friends and family know the type of person who I am, and I can only hope the guys feel that same way,” she said.
Here’s the thing, though — according to Garrett, the opinions reflected in the posts he liked aren’t his. Reality Steve tweeted about Garrett’s new Instagram account, and on it, he’s claiming that his old one was hacked.
Garrett’s excuse is more than likely a cop-out, but if that’s what he’s claiming, why didn’t Becca do the same?
Instead, throughout the rest of the interview, she talked about how she was able to get to know the contestants on a deeper level in person, compared to how she might’ve communicated with them on Instagram or Twitter.
“I feel like I got a much better picture of who these 28 guys were, as opposed to just looking on their social media and trying to make a decision of who they were by not talking to them,” Becca said.
Though she doesn’t exactly refer to Garrett’s scandal, she seemingly alludes to those watching the show that might have already written him off. “I think social media is a huge presence in our lives these days. There’s no getting around that fact,” Becca said. “It’s difficult for people to say certain things about any of these guys, and so I would really just hope that they watch the entire journey and get to know them for who they really are.”
But for many, that may be hard to do. It’s one thing to have political views that can be classified as Republican or Democrat — of course that’s acceptable. It’s another to resonate with the idea that a school shooting survivor is a crisis actor. That, which is what Garrett allegedly did, is much harder to dismiss as an “opinion.”