Sean Spicer’s controversial casting on Dancing with the Stars is causing trouble for Queer Eye star Karamo Brown.
Brown, who is also set to appear on the upcoming season of DWTS alongside the former Trump press secretary, has been criticized for his comments defending Spicer. While many have accused the show of essentially letting Spicer off the hook for his work with the Trump administration — and host Tom Bergeron admitted he’d wanted to avoid any “inevitably divisive bookings from ANY party affiliations” — Brown revealed that he’s already bonded with his new co-star.
“I was most excited to meet him,” he told Access. “People would look at us and think that we’re polar opposites, but I’m a big believer that if you can talk to someone and meet in the middle, you can learn about each other and help each other both grow. And so we have been chatting all day today. He’s a good guy, really sweet guy.”
Brown also defended Spicer on Twitter after being criticized for taking part in the show. In his response, he argued that it was important to “try to educate those who have [a] different POV than us.”
First, I have no say who is on the cast and didn’t find out till this morning that he is on! But I’ll tell you this... I’m excited to sit down w/ him and engage in a respectful conversations. Only way things get better is if we try to educate those who have different POV than us.— Karamo Brown (@Karamo) August 21, 2019
But his peace-making efforts have been slammed on social media, with some claiming he’d “sold out” by not distancing himself from Spicer and, by extension, the Trump White House.
“You being black and gay running around helping him rehabilitate his image by calling him nice and sweet is disgraceful and normalizes Trump,” admonished one commenter.
Others noted that Queer Eye often sees the Fab Five working with subjects who have conservative values — an element of the show now being both lauded and decried by viewers in equal measures.
further proof that queer eye exists to repackage homosexuality and make it palatable to conservatives who hate gay people but are still entertained by them— Rose Dommu (@rosedommu) August 21, 2019
@Karamo I love you ,but I’m super thrown off by you calling a man like Sean Spicer a “good guy”.Let’s not be blind 2 the fact that EVERYONE will smile in your face,that does not make them https://t.co/h8AqUIdf3o just makes them a coward,as they’ll do their dirt once you walk away— Brandon Elijah (@BrandonElijah_) August 22, 2019
@Karamo SERIOUSLY? There is no meeting in the middle with this. Sean Spicer IS NOT A GOOD GUY. You sold out man, you really sold out. You chose fame and money, over morality. I’m beyond disappointed and disillusioned with you on this one.— Steven A (@SArias93) August 21, 2019
Brown did get support from fans who felt he was right in taking a civil approach to Spicer, as well as those who argued that it was unfair to blame him for the controversial casting.
In other words @karamo doesn’t condemn people for their character flaws and still allows them the space to be a good person by seeing the good as well as the bad. Y’all get off his case smh— Cal (@Calmillr) August 22, 2019
The Trump administration’s goal is to divide people. And it’s working. Are we supposed to allow that to happen and avoid a healthy conversation? Let’s be angry at DWTS for getting Sean on the cast, not at Karamo for treating him with respect— Gavin (@Gavin_Tweets_) August 22, 2019
Brown fired back at one critic on Wednesday night, tweeting, “I honestly can’t stand people like you who post things like this and you reposted some BS about a comment Jonathan Van Ness] said ... just to flame the fire and get a reaction. We fight harder than your a** ever has for people of color and members of the LGBTQIA community.”
He has since deleted that tweet.
How Karamo talks about a fascist mouthpiece vs how he talks to a gay lightly dragging him. Love those respectful conversations! pic.twitter.com/wWKJDULQWV— Richard Butler (@rmdbutler) August 22, 2019
While Brown appears to be focused on reminding fans of his own personal politics by tweeting his support for Democratic congresswoman Rep. Rashida Tlaib on Thursday morning — Spicer is defending his DWTS participation amid the outcry and calls for a boycott.
“I think this is an entertainment show,” he told CNN. “I look forward to having some fun. And if people are looking for news, I suggest they tune into a news program. I am very happy with who I am and who I support. I’m not changing. I am giving people another opportunity to see a side of me that is different.
“I think Tom has been a great host,” he added in reference to Bergeron’s note revealing his objection to the casting. “And I firmly believe when the season is over he’s probably going to realize bringing a diverse group of people together, who can interact in a fun, civil and respectful way, is actually a way we can move the country forward in a positive way. And it will make this show an example of how Americans can disagree about politics and tune into good entertainment shows and keep their politics at bay.”
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