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Stassi Schroeder Would Like You to Forgive Her for Being Racist: 'I Wasn't Anti-Racist'

Illustration for article titled Stassi Schroeder Would Like You to Forgive Her for Being Racist: I Wasnt Anti-Racist
Image: Amy Sussman (Getty Images)

On Thursday, Stassi Schroeder gave her first interview since getting fired from Bravo’s Vanderpump Rules, an exit that was prompted by her calling the cops on Faith Stowers, the show’s only Black cast member. Along with Kristen Doute, Schroeder told police Stowers was a different Black woman, who had been accused of robbing people in Los Angeles. They, of course, viewed their actions as a very funny prank. Soon afterward, racist comments on her podcast were uncovered, along with that time she referred to her outfit as “Nazi Chic.”

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On ABC’s Tamron Hall Show, Schroeder began what could very well be the start of a crisis-triggered apology tour, telling Hall that she’s taken time to learn about accountability, and racism, and grow as a person. Or something. Honestly, I’m not sure, because everything out of Schroeder’s mouth sounded like buzzword jargon, with no real weight or comprehension behind it: a wealthy white woman half-reading and speed-sharing #BLM memes on her Instagram Story.

“I needed time to process my feelings. I needed time to process what happened,” Schroeder said, regarding her months-long absence. “I feel like one of the most frustrating parts when this all went down was that people expected me to just understand everything immediately and things like that take time.” But no worries, Schroeder forgave herself. “I’m someone who messed up quite a few times. I am the reason why I am in this situation. I think a lot of people wanted me to focus on cancel culture and whether I was a victim or not but it’s not how I feel at all.”

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On Wednesday, the day before The Tamron Hall Show aired, US Weekly spoke to a source that claimed Schroeder had spent “a lot of time learning about bias and systemic racism and has really been doing the work.” They said, “Rather than focus on cancel culture, she decided to be accountable for her actions and genuinely try to understand the issues and how she can be more conscious and in tune with what the Black community has been going through. She’s looking forward to talking about what she has learned,” language that eerily and potentially directly reflected what Schroeder told Hall on Thursday.

According to Page Six, Schroeder said that the most challenging part of learning about her own racism is that people think she’s racist, and she’s pretty sure she’s not racist. She said being called racist “has been the hardest part of all this. Just going out to a restaurant and going to the grocery store and wondering if that’s what people think… I don’t have hate in my heart. But I recognize that I wasn’t anti-racist. That’s something I’ve been learning throughout all of this.”

She also said she was “being a Karen” and is now working with a diversity coach to apparently learn why Black lives actually matter. She also hopes she doesn’t pass her racism-genes down to her daughter. “I want to be a better person. I’m pregnant and I want my daughter to be proud of me and I want to be a part of the solution,” she said. “I’ve been a part of the problem for years now and I recognize that.”

As for Stowers, People reports, Schroeder said she “legitimately thought we [Schroeder and Doute] were solving crime. I was completely wrong,” which is definitely something a person who understands the full implications of their act would say. “I’m bringing my experience as a white privileged woman to this situation, and she’s bringing her experience as a Black woman into this situation. Because it’s about race for her, it is about race. That’s something that I’ve realized,” she added. “I have spent my life as a privileged person. It is my fault, I have to say this, that I had not educated myself before. It’s my fault that I didn’t know better.”

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That doesn’t sound like much of an apology to me, but she said she plans to use her podcast to make “some sort of a difference,” so there’s that.

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It doesn’t really seem like Schroeder is ready to be held accountable for her actions; it seems like she believes she already has been, judging by her complaints about going through the ringer. Still, I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before she returns to television in some capacity. As everyone knows: reality TV is dependent on its villains, its needlessly offensive cast members, and Schroeder has excelled in that role since day one.

Senior Writer, Jezebel. My debut book, LARGER THAN LIFE: A History of Boy Bands, is out now.

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DISCUSSION

snide-o-mite
Snide-O-Mite

The combination of ingrained racism and fear of being labeled a racist has made a true reckoning impossible in this country.

Instead of trying to decipher who is and isn't a racist, I'd rather say, "You committed racist actions. Let's focus on why you did that."