I don’t think I’ve ever watched an entire episode of The Bachelor, or The Bachelorette for that matter. To me, those people are so bland. Sometimes I’ll see the women and men in magazine spreads or blogs, and they all blur together. Just an endless parade of completely average people, and inevitably I think, “Ah, I understand why you’re single. No one would be able to pick you out of a line up.”
So, this season’s “Bachelor” is Juan Pablo Galavis. He’s Venezuelan, a single father to a 4-year-old daughter and he was a soccer player. That’s basically all I know about him. So, Juan Pablo was doing some press at one of the ABC press-upfronts/parties and he let it slip that he thinks gay people are perverts who shouldn’t be allowed on television. Basically. Here are his original comments:
TV ‘Bachelor’ Juan Pablo Galavis is having a DUCK DYNASTY moment. The former Venezuelan soccer star said Friday night that he would be 100 percent opposed to having a cycle of the reality dating show feature an openly gay or bisexual bachelor.
“I don’t think it is a good example for kids to watch that on TV,” he told me while promoting the show at a network party in Pasadena, Calif.
“Obviously people have their husband and wife and kids and that is how we are brought up. Now there is fathers having kids and all that, and it is hard for me to understand that too in the sense of a household having peoples… Two parents sleeping in the same bed and the kid going into bed… It is confusing in a sense. But I respect them because they want to have kids. They want to be parents. So it is a scale… Where do you put it on the scale? Where is the thin line to cross or not? You have to respect everybody’s desires and way of living. But it would be too hard for TV.”
“I have a lot of friends like that, but they’re more pervert in a sense. To me, the show would be too strong, too hard to watch on TV.”
Yes, heaven forbid network television show a realistic depiction of a gay couple raising children. Oh, wait, doesn’t ABC (The Bachelor’s home network) air Modern Family, where Mitch and Cameron are raising their adopted daughter and it’s one of the most beloved sitcoms on air right now? Still, heaven forbid that network television show anything that’s not heteronormative and keeping with good Christian values, like a single father banging a revolving door of drunk women within a three-week period for ratings, money and fame. FAMILY FIRST.
So, ABC, The Bachelor executive producers and Warner Horizon Television issued a statement together shortly after Juan Pablo’s comments went wide: “Juan Pablo’s comments were careless, thoughtless and insensitive, and in no way reflect the views of the network, the show’s producers or studio.” Then Juan Pablo went to his Facebook and issued his own clarifying statement:
I want to apologize to all the people I may have offended because of my comments on having a Gay or Bisexual Bachelor. The comment was taken out of context. If you listen to the entire interview, there’s nothing but respect for Gay people and their families. I have many gay friends and one of my closest friends who’s like a brother has been a constant in my life especially during the past 5 months. The word pervert was not what I meant to say and I am very sorry about it. Everyone knows English is my second language and my vocabulary is not as broad as it is in Spanish and, because of this, sometimes I use the wrong words to express myself. What I meant to say was that gay people are more affectionate and intense and for a segment of the TV audience this would be too racy to accept. The show is very racy as it is and I don’t let my 5 year old daughter watch it. Once again, I’m sorry for how my words were taken. I would never disrespect anyone.
Huh. I’m not really sure if this makes it any better. I’m perfectly willing to give him a pass on the “pervert” thing – that could honestly be a second-language issue, like he might have meant to say “it’s perverse” maybe? But his explanation of what he really meant – “What I meant to say was that gay people are more affectionate and intense and for a segment of the TV audience this would be too racy to accept” – is still a negative stereotype. I believe he probably does have gay friends, but it seems like he does believe that his gay friends – and the gay community in general – is way too sexual, flamboyant and intense to be depicted on heteronormative network TV. So judgy, Juan Pablo.
Photos courtesy of WENN.