Earlier this week, we wrote about former “Bachelor” winner Rachel Lindsay speaking about her disappointment and embarrassment for being associated with “The Bachelor” brand when she was the lone example of diversity on the show in over forty seasons.
In the midst of her comments, Lindsay shared that she would like the next Bachelor to be a Black man. While she named, Mike Johnson, from the Hannah Brown season of “The Bachelorette,” he wasn’t the one the network ultimately decided on.
But they did choose a Black man.
“The Bachelor” Twitter account announced their next pick is Matt James.
“Good Morning America” was the first to break the news.
In a statement, ABC wrote: “We know we have a responsibility to make sure the love stories we’re seeing onscreen are representative of the world we live in, and we are proudly in service to our audience. This is just the beginning, and we will continue to take action with regard to diversity issues on this franchise. We feel so privileged to have Matt as our first Black Bachelor and we cannot wait to embark on this journey with him.”
While some are happy to see ABC take this step, there were those who feel the move is opportunistic. There’s a good chance that the network felt their hand was forced because of this socio-political moment.
According to PEOPLE, there was a petition urging “Bachelor” producer Mike Fleiss to cast more people of color. As of this morning, the petition had 84,000 signatures.
And there were others who took issue with the fact that James is not Mike Johnson, who has been a fan favorite for years now. They argued that he was on the show for the wrong reasons—mainly fame and attention.
We’ll see how this pans out.
Check out all of the reactions on the following pages.