Rachel Lindsay made the decision to say goodbye to Instagram due to all of the hate and terrible comments she has been receiving amid the ‘Bachelor’ franchise racism controversy.
According to People – “My co-host on Higher Learning, Rachel Lindsay, disabled her Instagram earlier today,” Van Lathan said in a video shared on his Instagram account Friday.
“She did it because that’s how much hate she’s getting from Bachelorfans who are spamming her with all kinds of rude and hateful things to say.”
Lathan continued to defend Lindsay from the harassment, saying, “Y’all have got to get a f— life. Seriously.”
“Rachel is not responsible for Chris Harrison, a 49-year-old man who can’t read the room in these 2021 times. She’s not responsible for that,” Lathan continued.
“It’s not her job to make excuses or provide cover for somebody who doesn’t understand what the f— triggers people in today’s world. It’s not. You’re going after the wrong person.”
“Rachel, we love you, we’re with you,” Lathan concluded the video.
Earlier this month, Lindsay interviewed longtime Bachelor Nation host Harrison for Extra, and asked him about current contestant Rachael Kirkconnell’s resurfaced social media posts that showed racist behavior, including attending an Antebellum South-themed party and wearing Native American attire as a costume.
In the interview, Harrison said people should have “a little grace, a little understanding, a little compassion” for Kirkconnell, who has issued an apology and earlier this week asked those defending her actions to “please stop.”
Harrison quickly received backlash for his failure to denounce Kirkconnell’s acts of racism and apologized a couple days later before announcing he will be “stepping aside” from the franchise for an unspecified amount of time.
It remains unknown who will replace Harrison on the upcoming After the Final Rose special for Matt James’ current season.
PEOPLE reported earlier this week that producers are working to make “appropriate changes” in the franchise.
Lindsay has said that Harrison’s stepping away as host is the “right decision.” She has also expressed surprise at the ongoing controversy, given that there have been “racist issues” on the show in the past.
Several former Bachelor and Bachelorette contestants have voiced support for Lindsay since the Extra interview.
If you need more background behind this story Lindsay shared her interaction with Chris Harrison on Extra, share shared with Us Weekly:
When I brought Chris Harrison onto Extra, he was going to talk about last night’s episode [of The Bachelor].
I brought him in on a Tuesday [and] he’s going to talk about what happened on Monday,” the former lawyer told cohost Van Lathan, noting that there was no one from the show’s PR team on the call with them.
“We did do that. But then I asked a question [because] something he said made me poke a little harder. So, I phrased the question, ‘What are your thoughts about the allegations against Rachael?’” And then he went off.”
Lindsay subsequently played clips from the 13-minute video, in which Harrison emphasized that the controversial photos of Kirkconnell at an “Old South”-themed party on a plantation in Georgia were taken in 2018.
“I saw a picture of her at a sorority party five years ago, that’s it,” Harrison told Lindsay about Kirkconnell on Tuesday, February 9. “My guess? These girls got dressed up and went to a party and had a great time, they were 18 years old. Now, does that make it OK? I don’t know Rachel, you tell me. Were we all looking through [that lens] in 2018?”
On “Higher Learning,” Lindsay said that Harrison’s “privilege was on display” during the interview.
“During that conversation, he talked over me and at me, during that conversation,” she said. “He never gave me room to talk.
And he never gave me room to share my perspective. He wasn’t trying to hear it. He was just trying to be heard. And that’s because I felt like he had an agenda that he was trying to push.
He was really trying to push that forward. He expressed everything that he said, with passion and conviction. So, for me, Tuesday is what it was.
And I’m not saying that he can’t be apologetic. I’m not saying that he can’t learn and be better from it.”
It will be interesting to see how all this plays out!