Lisa Vanderpump does not believe that the fired Vanderpump Rules cast members are racist. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alum condemned the actions of the former VPR stars but remains convinced that her former employees are not racist.
“It wasn’t right what they did at all, but do I think they’re racist? 1,000 percent not,” the Bravoleb said during a Monday appearance on “The Skinny Confidential’s Him & Her” podcast. “Because I have a lot of diverse people working for me that they’ve all been working very close to for many years.”
Lisa reiterated her position, labeling the cast members’ actions “stupid and ignorant.”
“Do I think it was a racist action? Not at all. I just think it was awful timing, and stupid and ignorant,” she said.
Bravo announced that they were axing Stassi Schroder and Kristen Doute for allegedly calling the police on a black cast member, Faith Stowers. Season 8 rookies, Max Boyens and Brett Caprioni were cut loose after past racist tweets were uncovered.
The dismissals went down as nationwide tensions rose during a Black Lives Matter resurgence.
Lisa explained that Stassi, 32, had a “lack of awareness,” and “lived in her own bubble,” giving the network a reason to “do what they had to do.”
“I think everything was so inflamed at that time, but it had also been an accumulation of things she had done,” Lisa told “Him & Her” hosts Lauryn and Michael Bosstick. “It wasn’t just one remark, and I think the fact that she was proactive in calling with this whole Faith situation just was not the way to handle things.”
Last year, it was revealed that Stassi had raised eyebrows while discussing the lack of diversity represented on award shows.
“Why aren’t the Asians being like, ‘We’re not represented.’ Why aren’t Native Americans and Latinos being like, ‘We’re not represented,’” she said during an episode of her now-defunct podcast, “Straight Up With Stassi.” “And whenever they get upset, everyone has to go above and beyond to then make them happy.”
The “them” referred to black individuals. Lisa said that she was unaware of many of the comments made outside the earshot of the hit reality show.
“This story had never reached my ears and I’m sure whatever they talked about at the time, they thought was funny … but I had certainly never heard that,” she said. “I never listen to any of their interviews quite frankly.”
Lisa explained that she would have liked to have seen her employees work on their personal growth on the Bravo stage.
“I don’t like this cancel culture, either,” she said. “Of course, I do think sometimes people should be punished and there should be punitive ramifications and actions do have consequences, but I think people can grow from their mistakes. I really do, and I think reality television is quite a good place to learn and see the growth.”
In June, Andy Cohen confirmed his support for the network’s decision to fire the four VPR stars but later admitted that he wished that they were pushed to work out their problems on camera, and learn their lessons in front of an audience.
“It’s more interesting to sit in the moment with people that you have a rooting interest in and watch them find their way than it is just turning out the lights and forgetting it existed,” the Bravo exec told the New York Times.
A return date for Vanderpump Rules has not been announced.