ABC's 'Bachelor' Juan Pablo Galavis Says Gays Shouldn't Be on the Show
UPDATED: "They're more pervert in a sense. To me, the show would be too strong, too hard to watch on TV," said the reality star. ABC, Warner Horizon Television and producers deem the remarks "careless, thoughtless and insensitive."
ABC's latest Bachelor says he doesn't think that there should be a gay or bisexual person on the reality television show and described gays as "more pervert in a sense" in a new interview.
Juan Pablo Galavis, the 32-year-old star of The Bachelor who also appeared on the most recent season of The Bachelorette, made the remarks in an interview with The TV Page's Sean Daly, who posted audio of the comments.
The writer asked whether ABC should have a gay or bisexual bachelor on the show. "No," Galavis responded. "Just 'cause I respect them but, honestly, I don't think it's a good example for kids to watch that on TV. It's hard, it's hard, it's a very thin line."
He continued: "Obviously, people have their husband and wife and have kids, and that's how we are brought up. Now there's fathers having kids and all that, and it's hard for me to understand that, too, in the sense of a household having people's -- two parents sleeping in the same bed and the kid going into bed. It's confusing in a sense, but I respect them because they want to have kids, they want to be parents. It's a scale; where do you put it on the scale, where's the thin line to cross or not? You have to respect everybody's desires, opinions and way of living. But it would be too hard for TV."
"There's this thing about gay people -- it seems to me, I don't know if I'm mistaken or not -- 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," Galavis said.
Galavis' comments follow a December controversy that erupted after Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson made remarks about gay people to GQ magazine and was temporarily suspended from the show. Those remarks ignited a firestorm, drawing pundits, celebrities and politicians to weigh in on the issue of the suspension.
ABC, Warner Horizon Television and the Bachelor producers issued a joint statement: "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."
"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."
Late Saturday, LGBT advocacy organization GLAAD issued a response. GLAAD's director of Spanish language and Latino media, Monica Trasandes, stated in a post on the organization's website that she had spoken with The Bachelor star on the phone and that he agreed to speak with LGBT families in Los Angeles over the next week.
"At a time when Latino support for gay and lesbian people and our families is growing, we look forward to continuing the conversation with Juan Pablo and working with him to help educate his fans about who gay and lesbian parents are," Trasandes said in the post. "Study after study shows that young people raised by gay parents are as happy and healthy as other young people."