‘Bachelor’ Matt James Says He’s ‘Focusing On’ A Relationship W/ His Ex Rachael Kirkconnell, Previously Broke Up W/ Her Over Racism Controversy
ABC’s The Bachelor has never been able to shy away from controversy; in particular, the lack of diversity. When Matt James was announced as the first Black bachelor for the 25th season, it was met with mixed reactions.
Host Chris Harrison knows all too well the consequences of implied racism after he had to step down, momentarily, after defending a contestant who attended an antebellum-themed party in 2018.
That contestant just so happened to be Rachael Kirkconnell, the final rose recipient. Matt James broke up with her after photos of her at the event surfaced, saying he felt she didn’t understand,
“…What it means to be a Black man in America…”
“I didn’t sign up to have this conversation.”
The former Demon Deacon WR continued,
“The work and reconciliation that needs to be done is work that I can’t do for you. And I know that you’re capable of doing it.”
“I’m not pursuing any relationships right now outside of that. I said I was going to focus on my relationship with her and that means focusing on it.”
“That’s something you could talk to her about. A lot of what I’m focused on right now is the work that I’m doing in the community and with the [marathon] training.”