Bachelor Matt James Responds to Racism Accusations Against Rachael Kirkconnell

Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James

ABC/Craig Sjodin Rachael Kirkconnell and Matt James pose on their one-on-one date.

Viewers watched as Rachael Kirkconnell was showered with designer gifts on The Bachelor. Off-screen, however, the contestant vying for Matt James’ heart is facing accusations of cultural appropriation and racist bullying.

Up until now, the franchise’s historic first Black Bachelor has stayed silent. During an interview with Entertainment Tonight’s Lauren Zima, James finally addressed the claims.

“I haven’t spoken to anybody since the show ended, but I would say that… you got to be very careful about what you’re doing on social media and I think that a lot of times, kind of what we dealt with last night, is you hear something on the internet and it’s fact,” said the real estate broker, referencing the drama in Monday’s episode as Brittany Galvin faced rumors of being an escort.

“So I would just warn people to be careful about making accusations before someone’s had a chance to speak on it,” he continued. “Because again, we saw how that happened with Brittany and Anna [Redman] in last night’s episode and, and rumors are dark and they’re nasty and they can ruin people’s lives.”

James added, “So, I would give people the benefit of the doubt and hopefully, she’ll have her time to speak on that.”

Stop! Spoilers for season 25 of The Bachelor below.

While the Bachelor has to maintain the mystery around his season’s ending, it is hardly believable he has not spoken to any of his contestants, especially Kirkconnell. Reality Steve is reporting the graphic designer from Cumming, Georgia is the final rose recipient.

Kirkconnell Is Accused of Bullying a Girl for Dating Black Men

Maddy Bierster took to TikTok the night of the premiere, writing over footage of Kirkconnell speaking with James, “girlieeee, remember when you bullied me in high school for liking black guys???”

In a series of videos, she pointed out the “irony” of Kirkconnell’s appearance on the dating competition and her statements about race in the season’s preview.

“I do acknowledge color in every sense,” Kirkconnell said in the preview. “I think that love is love, it doesn’t matter what it looks like.”

Bierster detailed her accusations that Kirkconnell was a bully, saying it “happened to me by her friend group in high school.” The Florida-based reporter did not provide concrete proof, but later shared direct messages of others claiming to have similar experiences.

Screenshots posted to Reddit seem to show Kirkconnell liking a photo of women posing in front of a Confederate flag and a photo of three women donning ponchos and sombreros. She also seems to have been photographed in a Native American costume.

Additional accusations have been detailed on TikTok.

Kirkconnell has not addressed the controversy.

Reality Steve Reported Kirkconnell Is James’ Winner

Despite the controversy, James and Kirkconnell are still a couple according to Reality Steve. He wrote, “Matt did not propose to Rachael. They are still together today though.”

The graphic designer is already being positioned as a frontrunner on the show after James said he was falling in love with her.

During the night portion of their one-on-one date, she told him, “I really am already like completely falling in love with you. And I want to walk out of here with you, and I want to start my life with you. And I hope that’ll happen. But the scary part about it is I just don’t know if that’s, you know, gonna be the outcome.”

“Can I share something with you?” James responded. “So, you’re not crazy, because I feel the same way.”

If she ends up actually being the winner or at least a contestant who makes it far, she is likely contractually prevented from speaking. As Reality Steve put it, “she isn’t allowed to speak right now.”

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