The star was seen in an old photo wearing a green jacket with the flag, which many believe is synonymous with racism and slavery, patched on the right arm. When the image began to circulate online, Burnett took to Twitter to share a video apology.
“People are telling me I shouldn’t say anything, I’m going to say something about this,” she began one of two videos. “So there’s this picture that’s been resurfaced of me wearing a jacket with a Confederate flag on it. That jacket was given to me by my ex. His dad actually gave it to me. I had no idea the weight that the Confederate flag held whenever I was wearing it. I just wore it for that one night.”
She went on to note that the jacket was from Kanye West’s Yeezy brand, which at the time she thought was cool.
‘Bachelor’ star Demi Burnett apologized over a resurfaced photo of herself wearing a Confederate flag jacket.
In 2013, People reported that West featured the flag on several items of clothing under his brand at the time in an effort to claim the symbol for the Black community.
“React how you want,” he told Los Angeles radio station 97.1 AMP at the time. “Any energy is good energy. You know the Confederate flag represented slavery in a way – that’s my abstract take on what I know about it. So I made the song ‘New Slaves.’ So I took the Confederate flag and made it my flag. It’s my flag. Now what are you going to do?”
Burnett was quick to note that the jacket previously being approved by West doesn’t in any way excuse her actions.
“I didn’t even pay attention to that. That’s ignorance. That’s ignorant of me not to pay attention to the Confederate flag. Even more ignorant of me to not even know how harmful that is to people. So, like yeah, I royally f—ed up wearing that. I am so f—ing sorry. I’m disgusted with myself. I’m embarrassed. It doesn’t even matter how I feel, I’m just so f—ing sorry because that is not what I stand for, that is not what I’m about and I’m really mad that I wore it.”
Kanye West previously designed a jacket with the Confederate flag on it.
In a second video, the “Bachelor” star continued with her self-depreciation over the resurfaced photo.
“I’ve been an ignorant, self-absorbed sack of s— for most of my life, so I genuinely had no idea what I was representing by wearing that jacket. I have no excuses other than ignorance, self-absorbed sack of s—. Disgusted with myself, I suck for that. I suck very badly for that. I know better now, did not know better then. What I can say now is be better than me, don’t look up to me. Look up to being better than me because I f—ing suck and I really f—ing hate myself for being ignorant. This is the time to change the world and make it better and I made it worse. So, I’m really, really sorry.”
The controversy for Burnett comes at a time of heightened awareness about race among fans of the “Bachelor” franchise after its longtime host, Chris Harrison, announced he was stepping aside after facing backlash for defending a contestant who attended an “Old South” party during an interview with the franchise’s first Black Bachelorette, Rachel Lindsay.