Joanna Gaines says accusations of racism and homophobia against her and Chip are 'so far from who we really are'

·3 min read
Chip and Joanna Gaines talk in front of a shiplap background.
Chip and Joanna Gaines are The Hollywood Reporter's July cover stars. NBC / Contributor / Getty Images
  • Chip and Joanna Gaines are the July cover stars of The Hollywood Reporter.

  • Joanna said "it's so far from who we really are" about accusations of homophobia and racism.

  • The couple faced backlash for donating to an anti-critical race theory political candidate in May.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Chip and Joanna Gaines addressed accusations of racism and homophobia against them in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.

The "Fixer Upper" duo are The Hollywood Reporter's July cover stars. Their new network, the Magnolia Network, premieres on July 15.

In their interview with Mikey O'Connell, the couple discussed a myriad of topics, including why they stepped back from on-camera work for a few years and their hopes for their new network.

But the couple also used the interview to disavow accusations of racism and homophobia they've faced in recent years.

chip joanna gaines fixer upper
Chip and Joanna Gaines in 2017. Roy Rochlin/FilmMagic/Getty Images

"The accusations that get thrown at you, like you're a racist or you don't like people in the LGBTQ community, that's the stuff that really eats my lunch - because it's so far from who we really are," Joanna told The Hollywood Reporter. "That's the stuff that keeps me up."

In May, the Gaineses faced backlash after The Dallas Morning News reported that they donated $1,000 to Chip's sister's campaign for a school board position, who was running on an anti-critical race theory campaign. They did not comment on the donation in The Hollywood Reporter feature. Representatives for the Gaineses did not respond to Insider's request for comment on this matter when reached for a previous story

In addition, the couple never featured a LGBTQ+ couple on the original "Fixer Upper," and their pastor, who said he was close friends with the Gaineses, supports conversion therapy for queer youth, as BuzzFeed reported.

Representatives for the Gaineses did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment on the backlash they have faced, and the couple declined to comment on those instances in their interview with The Hollywood Reporter, but Chip went on to say that he and Joanna are making an effort to make their company more reflective of the world. 

chip and joanna gaines
The couple said they are prioritizing diversity in their company. Roy Rochlin/Contributor/Getty Images

"As an American white male, it's hard to be perfectly diverse," he told The Hollywood Reporter. "In our own company, we've got nearly 700 employees, and one of our biggest passions is making this group represent all people."

Part of the reason diversity and inclusion has been on the couples' mind is because of the rise in violence against Asian Americans, as The Hollywood Reporter noted. Joanna is half-Korean, as her mother emigrated from South Korea to the US in 1972.

"Growing up as half-Asian, half-Caucasian, I get what that feels like to not be accepted and to not be loved," she said. "That's the last thing I want anyone to ever feel."

Joanna also spoke of her mother's experience with racism in the interview.

"My mom is so tough, but with one look or comment, I would just see her shut down," Joanna said of her mother's experience with racism to The Hollywood Reporter. "That's why she didn't know how to help me when I would come home and say, 'So-and-so called me this.' It was also happening to her."

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