I hope you’re sitting down. A Bachelor contestant has been called out for their racist past. In recent seasons it’s become a predictable part of the show’s meta-drama, and this year it happened in record time.
Less than 24 hours ago, Greer Blitzer, who won Zach Shallcross’ first impression rose, was posting pictures of rose-frosted confections, seemingly to celebrate the Monday night premiere of Season 27. On Tuesday, before Hulu viewers even had a chance to peep the episode, Blitzer added a Notes app apology to her Instagram story, saying she’d been wrong to defend the use of blackface in a Halloween costume.
“The journey to love is filled with lessons and these lessons are also made on our journey of growth,” she wrote. “In my past, I have made some uneducated, ignorant and frankly wrong comments on my social media accounts. In particular, in 2016, I used misguided arguments on Twitter to defend a student who dressed in Blackface as Tupac for Halloween.”
In September, a Reddit user had posted screenshots purported to show images of tweets by Blitzer in which she argued in someone’s replies about why it was wrong to get mad about an instance of a white person for wearing blackface. “The students involved didn’t even know what black face was so my point exactly. It wasn’t an intentional racist act,” one tweet said. “She did not paint herself black because she felt superior to black [people],” said another. A third said, “Putting white powder on your face isn’t okay either. That didn’t make the news did it?” The screenshots are not dated. Additional photos in the same Reddit post appear to show Blitzer wearing a Trump/Pence sticker and supporting Trump’s lead over Hillary Clinton on election night in 2016.
In her Monday post, Blitzer apologized to the people she’d hurt, “especially those within the Black community,” and said that she was not just saying sorry because she’d been caught, but because she was sorry she had ever “shared those harmful opinions at all.”
“Time and age do not excuse my actions, but this is not a reflection of who I am today,” she continued. “I do not stand by or condone the damaging opinions and behaviors I shared during that stage of my life and will forever regret making those offensive remarks.”
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Before it all came promptly crashing down, we knew Blitzer as the bubbly — if somewhat grating — winner of Zach’s first impression rose. His decision caused an epic reaction of disgust from Charity. We knew she was a 24-year-old medical sales rep from Houston, who spoke about herself in the third person, brought Zach a coffee “all the way from New York” for her introduction gimmick, and has always wanted to move to Austin — right where Zach lives (Yay!).
The milkshake-ducking of a contestant, oftentimes to a collective public reaction of “I knew it” is well-trod territory, even if it typically takes more than one night. In 2017, on Rachel Lindsay’s season as the first Black Bachelorette, it was revealed about a week after the premiere that contestant Lee Garrett had posted several blatantly offensive tweets, including sharing a petition calling to define the Black Lives Matter movement a terrorist group. In 2018, we learned contestant Garret Yrigoyen had liked a bunch of offensive memes, including those mocking trans women and calling Parkland Shooting survivors “crisis actors.” He apologized, and bachelorette Becca Kufrin chose him as her future husband. They broke up in 2020 after Yrigoyen backed the blue in the wake of George Floyd’s murder. Just last year, it was revealed that the guy Gabby Windey chose, Erich Schwer, had appeared in blackface himself in his high school yearbook. The image surfaced shortly before the finale aired — where he proposed to Gabby. (They have also since broken up.) He apologized at the time, saying, in part, “What I thought at the time was a representation of my love for Jimi Hendrix, was nothing but ignorance.”