Julie Chen, host of CBS’ controversial “Big Brother,” has finally spoken out against the furor that has erupted around homophobic and racist remarks from two contestants, Aaryn Gries and GinaMarie Zimmerman.
On the reality show, which puts several contestants inside a house totally isolated from the outside world, Gries told an Asian American contestant to “go make some rice.” Zimmerman, who had worked as a beauty-pageant contestant, used the N-word in criticism of welfare.
Both comments originally aired on the show’s online live stream, and were broadcast during Sunday’s installment.
Chen, who is also the moderator of the syndicated series “The Talk,” addressed the comments during Monday’s installment, saying the Asian slurs “hurt me the most.”
“It stung -- I took it personally,” Chen said in the panel discussion. “It took me back to the ‘70s when I was growing up in Queens, and when I was 7 years old, getting bullied with people pulling their eyes back.”
She added that she felt ignorant that people still had racist views in 2013. “Afterward, it just made me sad.”
Although Chen said the panel on “The Talk” often makes humorous remarks about race, she said the “Big Brother” comments were “mean. It felt mean.”