There was a racist incident that occurred on this season of ABC’s dating reality show, “The Bachelorette.”
One contestant, Andrew Poole, allegedly leaned over to another during the show’s first rose ceremony and whispered “She picked the two blackies,” after two African American men were picked to continue vying for Andi Dorfman’s heart.
ABC doesn’t have audio of the incident, but it does have video of Poole leaning over and whispering something after Ron, one of the African American men, received a rose.
When Marquel Martin, one of the contestants who was allegedly called “blackie,” learned about the comment, he approached Poole about the sensitive topic in an inspiring way.
On a group date, Martin addressed the issue head on: “Andrew, I’d like to discuss something with you,” he said calmly. “What I heard — and I don’t need anyone to chime in — I heard during the first rose ceremony that you made a statement that was very offensive to me. I heard that you said, ‘She picked the two blackies.”
Screenshot via ABC
Poole looked shocked and awkwardly laughed. Then he denied the statement.
“Before you start laughing,” Martin continued, “That term is very derogatory.”
“I’ve never said anything like that in my life,” Poole interjected.
Martin pressed on. “I hope you can understand as a man that, when there’s something as sensitive and serious as the topic of race, it directly effects me. I find it hard to be around you, I find it hard to respect you.”
“Being that I am a man of respect and I believe in talking to a man face to face, I want you to understand and respect where I’m coming from — that I will never stand for any type of talk like that,” Martin said. He then ended the conversation and walked away.
Later, the producers asked him about the incident. “I’ll let everyone else judge how he responded,” Martin said. “Maybe he did say it, maybe he didn’t say it. I’m not going to sit up all night and say, ‘Who is really telling the truth?’ I spoke my truth.”
A few weeks later, Martin and Poole were asked about the incident again by ABC. Martin — who is religious — explained to Poole, “I’m not attacking you, Andrew, because my faith calls me to forgive you anyway. But at the same time I will never forgive the ignorance that is racism.”
Here’s the clip of Martin confronting Poole about the racist statement he allegedly made. Poole says the incident put his job in jeopardy, and he still claims he never made a derogatory comment.
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