As the final rose ceremony draws near and the list of contestants for Katie Thurston’s heart dwindles, viewers are starting to get to know the men on a deeper level, including fan favorite Justin Glaze. The self-proclaimed romantic from Baltimore came in hot this season, hopping out of the limo and receiving the much-coveted first kiss. He has also become one of the most retweetable assets of Katie’s season, thanks to his hilarious and expressive facial reactions. Unfortunately, his social media presence isn’t exactly all fun and memes.
Earlier this month, offensive tweets the Season 17 contestant shared between 2009 and 2011 resurfaced on Reddit. He addressed his divisive social media posts, which reportedly included homophobic slurs and promoted colorism, during an episode of the Bachelor Happy Hour podcast.
“As I reflect on everything I just went through with this whole journey, oftentimes people ask me what I took from it,” Justin told host Becca Kufrin and guest host Tayshia Adams. “And one of the biggest takeaways for me was just my personal growth. … I have no issue with owning up and apologizing from the bottom of my heart for the really hurtful words that I used.”
Although he was a teenager when he posted the tweets, Justin wanted to make sure he took responsibility for what he said and address the issue head-on. “The last thing that I want to do is run from it. That’s not who I am. I just want to speak from the heart, and hopefully, people will get an understanding of where I was then versus where I am now,” he shared. “When I look back at 14-year-old Justin, I was in high school and quite frankly I was the type of person who for whatever reason felt the need to fit in and say funny things and keep up with what my peers were doing and saying. The folks I had associated with would throw around really hurtful slurs that, at the time, I didn’t really think anything of. Though decades have come and gone what I said was ignorant and hurtful then [and] it’s ignorant and hurtful now.”
Accountability has been a theme in recent seasons of The Bachelor franchise, with multiple contestants and even ex-host Chris Harrison addressing fans with apologies once allegations of past racist behavior have surfaced.
Now that he’s addressed the recent controversy, the 27-year-old investment consultant still has his expressive eyes set on Katie, who gave him a rose after their first one-on-one date together.
During the date, which consisted of a fake wedding ceremony, Katie let her guard down and shared that the man who raised her wasn’t her biological father. “My mom kept that a secret,” Katie shared while explaining that she had a difficult time processing the loss of the man who raised her while also deciding if she wanted to build a relationship with her biological father.
“You continue to amaze me with the strength that you have,” Justin comforted her in response. “I’m honored you chose me to be on this date. I want to know everything about you. It’s what makes you, you. I want to know how I can support you and effect you in a positive way. I’m really looking forward to what’s to come.” After the date, Katie shared that she felt “taken care of,” adding, “It’s crazy to see how one date can change everything.
Here’s everything else we know about one of the front-runners vying for Katie’s heart.
Justin’s Job Is Only A Small Part Of Who He Is
Justin appears to be a well-rounded and well-cultured contestant. The former track and field athlete works as an investment sales consultant but seems to have a good handle on balancing his buttoned-up career with a more relaxed lifestyle. He shares in his ABC bio that he loves a good barbecue, counts Basquiat as his all-time favorite artist, and if given the opportunity to be a superhero, he would be Black Panther. The downside? He apparently hates dancing. Let’s hope that Katie’s able to look past this one shortcoming or that she’s able to persuade him to get on the dance floor.
Justin’s Instagram Shows Off His Side Passion
As the emojis in his Instagram bio confirm, Justin is an artist. The majority of his posts show him either beside a completed work of art or in the process of creating a final piece. His work runs the gamut from romantic nudes to sketches of families and even a striking painting of Marilyn Monroe. Taking bets now that he does a portrait of him and Katie at some point in the season.
What Justin Is Looking For
According to Justin’s ABC bio, his parents have been married for more than 30 years and he looks to them as an example of what a successful relationship should look like. Though he’s tried his hand at dating, he hasn’t found “the one” yet, but he does know what he’s looking for in a partner. His checklist for the perfect mate includes someone who is trustworthy, beautiful inside and out, and committed to approaching life as a team. He’s also looking for someone who can balance a passion for fitness with a passion for Sauvignon Blanc (aren’t we all?), so tune in to see if Katie can get that balance right.
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