Karamo Brown Faces Continued Backlash for Friendship with Sean Spicer

by Sam Cronin

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Thursday October 31, 2019

"Queer Eye" star Karamo Brown was a contestant on this season of "Dancing with the Stars." So was former Press Secretary Sean Spicer. During the filming of this season, Brown and Spicer reportedly formed a friendship, with Brown saying he wanted to "engage in a respectful conversation," according to Time. He's received tons of hate from fans online who see associating with Spicer and supporting his casting on the dance competition to be a mistake.

In response, Brown has deleted Twitter and doubled down on the value of sitting down and talking respectfully with those you may not agree with.

"Day one I got backlash [for supporting Spicer]," Brown said, according to People. "I started this show with people telling me, 'You're horrible, you're crazy, you're stupid.' Because I showed someone who has a different political view than mine kindness."

"My goal coming into this was to introduce myself to people who have never seen Queer Eye, to let them know who I am," he said. "And also, my goal has always been to show how if you can show kindness and lead with love, things can change."

He went on to say that during filming, the two had trailers near each other, and frequently spoke honestly about comments Spicer made while serving as Press Secretary.

"Through this process, Sean's trailer has been next to mine and I have literally every day been planting seeds in his heart," Brown said on Monday to People. "'When you made this comment, it hurt me as a man. When you made this comment, it hurt me as a person of color. When you made this comment, it hurt me as a gay man.' And literally, I could see each week those seeds ... blossoming."

Entertainment Weekly reported that Spicer got teary-eyed after Brown was kicked from the show. Brown responded by saying that he felt that emotional reaction was proof that his strategy of friendship for all was effective in opening minds.

"I was very happy that Sean was crying at the end of it because, you know, what I do on 'Queer Eye' is reach out to people who have different points of view and people who are different from me and help them to have emotional breakthroughs, help them to have growth," Brown told EW.

"[H]is emotional reaction was because he realized where he was and how he needed to grow. And he grew. I mean, you don't cry for somebody if you're just like, 'Oh, I'm glad they're going.' You cry for somebody because you have an emotional attachment to them."

This whole situation is reminiscent of the controversy Ellen Degeneres faced after her friendship with former President George W. Bush raised eyebrows and drew the ire of many fans.

Despite all the controversy, Spicer told Time: "I think that it's been great getting to know [Brown], getting to discuss things with him... And so it's tough to watch somebody that you've really got close to go home when you know how hard they've worked and how much progress they've made."

At the end of the day, Brown plans to continue his strategy of friendship, and wants to bring more of it to the rest of Washington, telling Time: "[I]f I can touch his heart, I'm about to go through and make a tour of Washington! I still want Trump out of office, but you know."

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