Rachel Lindsay Says Matt James's Casting as the First Black Bachelor Feels Like a "Knee-Jerk Reaction"

After nearly two decades and 24 seasons, The Bachelor Franchise has played its first black male lead role this week, but according to former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay, the show's decision is more of a "knee-jerk reaction" to the current social movement than an obligation a real change.
On Friday, Lindsay, who asked ABC producers to acknowledge that they'd been engaging in systematic racism earlier this week, responded to the news of Matt James' historic casting on Juliet Litman's podcast Bachelor Party.
"Don't get me wrong, it's nice that there is a black bachelor. It's great, but let's go into the but," said Lindsay, adding: "I spoke very loudly about the need for a black bachelor . It’s not because of the movement. I always have to say that. I’ve always pushed for diversity. It’s just black voices that are amplified in ways that have never been before… and now people are paying attention. ""
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She continued, "The fact that there is a list of things that I requested and this petition on Change.org, and the bare minimum has been done that seems easy, right? Just give us a black one Bachelor? That's what it's like, it's the easiest thing you can do for me and I hate that it's a reaction - or it seems to be a jerky reaction to what's happened in our society what happened to George Floyd and that pressure you get from society. "
Lindsay shared a similar reaction on Twitter and congratulated James on his role. "Congratulations to Matt James. I'm glad to see that a black man has been occupied after 18 years and 40 seasons. I think it's a step in the right direction," she began before pointing out the announcement alone poses deeper problems under the carpet. "
Rachel Lindsay

@ TheRachLindsay
Congratulations to Matt James. I am glad to see that after 18 years and 40 seasons a black man has been occupied. I think it's a step in the right direction.
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7:40 p.m. - June 12, 2020
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Rachel Lindsay

@ TheRachLindsay
I don't want to point out that given the current climate, it feels like a jerky reaction and a result of social pressures. This announcement, with no further diversity commitments, sweeps deeper questions under the carpet.
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7:43 p.m. - June 12, 2020
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"Until we see measures to combat systemic racism within the franchise, today's casting news is in line with the trend of posting a black box on your social media account without taking further steps to dismantle the systems of injustice" , she wrote. "I look forward to hearing more about the additional efforts the franchise is planning to change."
Rachel Lindsay

@ TheRachLindsay
Until we see measures to combat systemic racism within the franchise, today's casting news is in line with the trend of posting a black box on your social media account without taking further steps to dismantle the systems of injustice.
7,793
7:43 p.m. - June 12, 2020
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932 people talk about it
Rachel Lindsay

@ TheRachLindsay
I look forward to hearing more about the additional efforts the franchise is planning to change.
4,553
7:43 p.m. - June 12, 2020
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239 people are talking about it
RELATED: Rachel Lindsay wants undergraduate producers to recognize the show's systemic racism
On the same day, the bachelor released a statement assuming responsibility for the franchise's lack of diversity and explaining how they plan to make effective changes in the coming seasons.
"We recognize our responsibility for the lack of representation of colored people in our franchise and are committed to making significant changes to address this issue in the future," the statement said. "We are taking positive steps to expand the diversity in our line-up, in our employees and, above all, in the relationships that we show on television. We can and will do better to reflect on the world around us and all of it to show beautiful love stories. "

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