The Bachelor’s Chris Harrison says ‘I’m an imperfect man’ in first interview since racism controversy

Longtime Bachelor host plans to return to the franchise

Clémence Michallon
New York City
Thursday 04 March 2021 15:43
Chris Harrison on Good Morning America
Chris Harrison on Good Morning America

The Bachelor host Chris Harrison has given his first interview since stepping away from the franchise amid a racism controversy.

Harrison announced last month he would be absent from the programme “for a period of time”. The decision came after an interview with former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay, in which Harrison sought to defend current Bachelor contestant Rachael Kirkconnell against allegations of racist and offensive behaviour.

Kirkconnell has since issued an apology of her own, stating in part: “At one point, I didn’t recognise how offensive and racist my actions were, but that doesn’t excuse them ... I was ignorant, but my ignorance was racist.”

After his interview with Lindsay, Harrison apologised in an Instagram post for “wrongly speaking in a manner that perpetuates racism”. In an interview on Good Morning America on Thursday, the host was asked by Michael Strahan why he defended Kirkconnell during that interview.

"I am an imperfect man,” Harrison said. “I made a mistake and I own that. I believe that mistake doesn't reflect who I am or what I stand for.”

Read more: Rachel Lindsay deletes Instagram after being ‘harassed’ by Bachelor fans amid ongoing racism controversy

Harrison described himself as “committed to progress, not just for myself, also for the franchise.” The host said he was “saddened and shocked” at how “insensitive” he was during his interview with Lindsay, adding: “I am deeply sorry. I am sorry to Rachel Lindsay and I am sorry to the Black community.”

He also defended Lindsay against the bullying and hate she has faced online, which prompted her to delete her Instagram account. “To anyone who is throwing hate towards Rachel Lindsay, please stop,” Harrison said. “It is unacceptable.”

Asked about his future on the Bachelor franchise, Harrison told Strahan: “I plan to be back, and I want to be back. This interview is not the finish line. There is much more work to be done, and I’m excited to be a part of that change.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in