Two Men Allege Discrimination in “The Bachelor” TV Casting


Two black men are taking “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” to court with a lawsuit that claims the reality shows are blocking contestants of color from starring roles.  The men feel that they were not seriously considered as contenders because they were black.  Ya think?  This has been obvious since half past the show started.

Nathaniel Claybrooks and Christopher Johnson filed a federal lawsuit in Nashville against the shows, claiming they are engaged in a pattern of racial discrimination that intentionally excludes people of color. The Nashville men said at a casting call in August that they were given scant consideration compared to white men seeking a leading role for “The Bachelor.”

We’ve seen the pattern with these shows for years, so it’s really no surprise, but something definitely needs to be done.  Sure, they include minorities as the choices, but they are NEVER considered serious contenders to win the single guy or gal.  Even as a viewer we know the minorities they add as choices are used just to pacify the audience.  Yeah, we’ve seen you for a long time Buddy!  I have never been able to take the shows seriously because of their obvious shenanigans.  It’s not like the only two black applicant’s backgrounds weren’t impressive enough.

Nathaniel is a 39-year-old college graduate and electric company meter reader who owns several small businesses.  He also played linebacker for Middle Tennessee State then for the Arena Football League and Nashville’s semi-professional team, the Nashville Storm, from 2001 to 2011.  He’s not bad on the eye’s either.  He thinks attitudes will change once the show gets a black man in the lead role. He says, “I  equate it to black quarterbacking in the NFL.  When you give them an opportunity, they always come through.”  It may also boost their very sloppy ratings too Nate, but they don’t hear us though.

Christopher is a 26-year-old teacher who was just hired to coach high school football.  He is also trying to get into the NFL.  He is also easy on the eyes.  Regarding the lawsuit he says, “I only wanted a fair shot at the part. Looking back at how I was treated at the casting call last year, it was clear that that wasn’t possible. I never even had a chance.”

The lawsuit claims that the shows and the entertainment companies are violating a provision of the 1866 Civil Rights Act that bars businesses from refusing to contract with others because of their race and a California law that prohibits racial discrimination.

The two men are asking the federal court to order the companies to consider people of color as finalists for the leading role in the TV shows. They are also asking that the suit be certified class-action so others could join the litigation.

Their attorneys said it is the first racial discrimination lawsuit filed against a reality show. It does not ask for a specific dollar amount of damages, but it does propose to make major changes in how people are seen on TV.

Both shows have come under fire in recent years for not having enough diversity and now it’s being brought to the forefront and it needs to be dealt with.  I’m really interested in seeing how this whole thing plays out.   Are you?

April 19, 2012Weird Whispers

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