Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Dear World: Why I'm Not The Next 'Bachelor'

Dear World,

Let me start by saying, I want to congratulate Chris! 

Chris, I support you as much as I would support any of my friends in finding love, so I especially hope you don’t take offense to this letter.  Anyone who feels that one person is more deserving of finding love than another is absurd in my opinion. Which is why you have my full support.  I love and respect you brotha. Now go get your wife.

Now, with this morning's announcement of ABC's next 'Bachelor', I felt it's my responsibility to take this opportunity to speak up, rather than let things be swept under the rug. I feel I need to tell the world why I believe I was not chosen and possibly never considered at all. I understand that this letter may come as a shock, and depending on who you are and your personal views, these statements may elicit a range of reactions as well as feelings. It is my intention to offend no one.

So why wasn’t I chosen to be the next bachelor? 


Many thoughts come to mind.

The most important and obvious elephant in the room that remains to be an underlying concern for some, is the question of will there ever be a black 'Bachelor' or 'Bachelorette'? Let me be clear, I not trying to be that guy. But I’d be lying to myself and the world if I didn’t say that I feel like race played a large factor in this decision. 

What else could it have been?

Was it because I was on Bachelor In Paradise? I don’t think so.

Not enough fan support? It sure didn't feel that way.

Not ready for love? Definitely not the case.

As many reasons as there possibly could be, there is one in particular that stands out and that has made me particularly uneasy. 

Now that the decision is made, I'm expressing my feelings and hope they inspire an important discussion.

It's important to note, even I myself had genuine concerns about how I would react if I was ever given the opportunity to be the next 'Bachelor'. Being the “first black 'Bachelor'” was an intimidating thought in and of itself! How would the world respond to an African American 'Bachelor'? How would the cast members feel? Would my faith continue to be challenged and scrutinized? How would the world respond to the prospect of an African-American couple or potentially an interracial couple? 

All these questions will not be answered with me, but I hope they will with someone else down the road. This is why I have peace as I’m typing this letter.

Let me assure you, I am not bitter. I am not desperate. I am not playing a 'race card’ and I’m not trying to bite the hand that fed me. I am grateful for ABC and the entire Bachelor/Bachelorette family that I have been blessed to be added to. And I know that if this letter was coming from any of those negative places of bitterness or desperation, I would be lessening my character and cheapening this message. No, those are not my motives at all. 

As I said, I loved my time on The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise. It was a huge blessing and an unforgettable experience that taught me more about myself as a person and allowed me to make friendships that I will cherish for many years to come. Although I didn’t find love, I walked away from the experience a better man and more prepared for the day when I do find love.

The aftermath of being on the show has been unbelievable to me. I've felt such an outpouring of love and support from thousands of people all across the world who simply liked me on a reality TV show. I never imagined being embraced by so many.

Amongst all the tweets and messages of "you were my favorite on the show!”, “thank you for being real”, “thanks for not being afraid to represent your faith" and "I love the cookie monster!", was a hint of change on the horizon. A first for a franchise and a potential beginning of a new era on popular television. A chance for change and a way to progress our society further by knocking down old perceptions, expectations, and ideals. It was the opportunity to have the first African-American 'Bachelor'.

But this morning, that hint of change on the horizon faded.

I’m still hopeful that change will come someday. If not with me, then with someone else.

My motives for this letter is a call for change. To make the world question why. To make people think.

My motive is to let people know that simply because the world was not ready for change, we failed to take a step forward for progress in our society. Due to the belief that the world was not ready for the first African-American 'Bachelor', we have lost out on another opportunity for equality, hope, and true change.

After reading this letter, some of you may think, "Get over yourself, Marquel. This is just reality TV. It is not serious, it wouldn't be making a difference with anything." But I don't believe that's the truth. I believe that anything that reaches a large majority of people, even if it is mainstream reality television, has the power to influence change in the world. And once again, today we missed an opportunity to influence a change.

I am forever grateful and humbled by this whole experience.  I believe God put me in this position so I could continue to be refined as a human being and become a better future father and husband. This letter is not a statement, but a plea. A plea for change and a plea for tolerance, equality, and coexisting everywhere. 

I want to be a voice for change. I want to be a voice that inspires hope for anyone and everyone of any color, race, or nationality. I want to say that I hope we can one day live in a world where certain positions, accolades, or acknowledgements are given purely based on the merit and qualifications of those being considered above anything else.

Lastly, I love you all. Know that I am proud of who I am. I’m proud of who I represent in regards to my family, friends, fans, and coworkers. I am proud of what and who I represent in my faith. Thank you all. I am so humbled by all the love and support that I have felt from so many of you over the course of this journey.

Here's for change.


#changeforbachelor

All the best,

Marquel Martin



37 comments:

  1. I love you bro keep expressing the real and representing us well.....

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  2. You're such an amazing person , Marquel. I was never as tied to the Bachelorette as I was when you were on the show. You showed the world who you were, and that you're ready to face anything that comes your way, graciously of course. You have people who love you no matter what- your fans are always going to support you. Thank you for letting us see the real you. Stay real!

    <3, one of your "biggest" fans

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  3. I love that you came to blogger/blogspot to share this! I was one of the many who was also rooting for you to be the next Bachelor, and was hoping for a change just as you were. It's a change I would have loved to see. Know that you are a very respected man, and so well spoken, and although you were not chosen as the next bachelor, I'm glad you were given the opportunity to be on the Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise, because not only I, but so many people loved you! I loved everything you said on here, especially where you stated: "I hope we can one day live in a world where certain positions, accolades, or acknowledgements are given purely based on the merit and qualifications of those being considered above anything else." I truly believe you fit every qualification there was to be the next bachelor, and the way you presented yourself on the show, showed what a kind and respectful man you are. God has another plan for you in your journey to find love. Good luck to you, Marquel!

    - MeYouAndHayleyLarue.com

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  4. Marquel, first off let me say that I am a huge fan of yours! I fell in love with you on the bachelor and had my fingers crossed that you would be the next bachelor. It was so refreshing to see a person with values and integrity and most importantly a Christian. I am so disappointed that ABC felt like the world wasn't ready for an African american bachelor. I would like to know who they are speaking to, that they think we aren't ready to see a person of color. I am not African American but Hispanic and also discriminated against at times. Maybe thats why I don't see color or race but I just can't understand why they think America isn't ready. We are ready and I was solo hopeful that they would choose you as the next bachelor. It saddens me that we come this far as country with having an African American president, but we can't have a black bachelor. The only thing I can say is that God has a bigger plan for you Marquel. This a great step in changing TV and I hope ABC sees all the support your going to get because I know you'll get an abundance of supporters. Stay strong Marquel and know that their are so many of us that love and support you! God bless you and I hope that you find a woman who deserves you!

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  5. I completely see why you would feel this way. It's sad that anyone would have to second guess the reasoning behind these types of decisions, but there is obviously truth fueling your thoughts. You would have been an amazing and refreshing Bachelor to say the least! Yet when it comes down to what really matters- is that this wasn't in God's plan for you Marquel! Our vision of life is limited compared to what God sees for us. You of all people know that :) Great things are coming! It was a joy watching you on both shows..... Good luck in all you do! <3

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  6. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this controversial topic with grace and class. I love your writing and even suggested once on Instagram that you should start a blog, so I hope you continue. I'm in an interracial relationship and we are about to have a son, and I'm extremely passionate when it comes to diversity. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, and perhaps your reason for being part of these shows is that you would make a positive impact on those watching, and it's clear that you have. I believe that what God has planned for you is bigger than The Bachelor, and though it would have been wonderful to see you in that role, I know that you'll continue to make an impact on the world in other ways. I'll continue to follow you on social media and I'm excited to see what life has in store for you!

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  7. Oh enough. "The world is not ready for an african american as "the bachelor" but funny we were ready for an african american to run our country years ago. This is just an excuse for why you weren't chosen. Nothing to do with race my friend.

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  8. Brilliant marquel you couldn't sum it up better. We are all equal human beings and we all deserve to be loved and to find love because its not the color of our skin that determines this its the heart on the inside and we can all see your special heart. God made every one equal and the world is yet to still learn how to treat one another ..... Which is sad. On another note you could walk away with whats being said..... And say Hey maybe im not the bachelor because my wife is around the corner. Everything happens for a reason and i have no doubt the greatest happiness is yet to come your way and no television show can take that away from you

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  9. Well said your an amazing person follow back on Instagram please @brandis_life

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  10. I'm not playing the race card, but it's because I'm black! HAHAHA. Dude you need therapy! Chris 'The Farmer' was more popular than you! You were popular no doubt, but a very distant number two or three (Marcus being 2 or 3). Then on Bachelor in Paradise you run around on all these dates and are upset when you don't get a rose. Can't have your Kate and Edith too (get it? pun on cake and eat it).
    You could've hung on to Michelle or Danielle and played it cool, but you had to be Mr. Party. YOU LOSE. You totally dissed Chris.

    You should definitely analyze your words BRO. Example, Michelle you drink too much! HAHA..then you think nothing of it..as if sorry makes up for it. Example, Congratulations Chris...oh it's because I"m black that I'm not number 1. DOOD! You JUST subtracted your congratulations to Chris when you say it's because you're black!

    You CANNOT be a voice for change until your words and actions support such a voice! You Do Not Get It! and you will continue to not get it for a long long time..because the way you are has worked so well for so many years that you will not change. If you could find a way to change then you could go to the next level, but it will entail a transformation. You have a LONG way to go, but I do believe you possess the tools. I just don't think you are capable of facing who you are and how you project yourself to people. Good luck to you. Wake up and smell the humus.. as Robin Williams would say (as the Genie).

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  11. Marquel, in my opinion where you went wrong is the capris pants and the tight, colored skinny jeans! I wouldn't want to look in my closet and think, "are these my pants babe, or are they yours?" In all seriousness, I would have loved to have seen you as the next bachelor. That statement has squat to do with your race or anyone else's and everything to do with how well-spoken you are. Your quick wit, bright smile, and respect for others (and yourself) would have made you a better bachelor than most. Actually, come to think of it, it is probably best you are not the next bachelor. Now, you can spend your time pursing love with real women and not those who think that knowing someone for two days means they need to lock you down as the love of their life! Best of luck to you :)--hollie

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  12. I would have loved to see you as the next Bachelor. Not because of the color of your skin but because of your faith. The world needs more good Christian men! You will make a woman very happy one day. God knows who she is. It just isn't the right time to introduce you to her.

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  13. It saddens me that in today's world this is even still an issue. In my opinion ABC does a terrible job "representing" what the viewers want to see. It is in every way obvious and wrong that racial inequality comes into decisions made for the show. I commend you for speaking up and keeping a calm Christian level head through it all.

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  14. I completely agree with you about the ABC not being ready for a black bachelor. I find it odd after so many seasons the bachelor/bachelorette is always white. They did cast Juan Pablo... But he looked white. I was totally rooting for you to be our first non-white bachelor. I also found it weird that on Bachelor in Paradise they focus on the white couples and you were barely seen on the show. Being a product of an interracial relationship it saddens me that they can not show interracial couples on tv.

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  15. Marquel, I was rooting for you. I honestly felt you should have chosen Danielle. She was very stunning, sincere and she came to paradise just to meet you... Good luck with finding the right one, she's out there.

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    1. of course he should have stayed with Danielle! She was into him and seemed like a lot of fun. But ol' MarqHell thought he was bullet proof with all these women asking him on dates. He and Danielle would still be on the show!
      Let's face it the prospect of finding true love in that venue is super low. So pick someone you can have fun with and have an extended vacation in paradise. Marquel has a giant chip on his shoulder. When things going his way GIANT SMILE...when his actions cause him to not get a rose .. OH BOO HOO I'LL NEVER FIND LOVE...BOO HOO..HAHAHA...and Congrats Chris! But because I'm black I wasn't chosen even though I was more popular! WOW...haha MarqHell says "we have lost out on another opportunity for equality, hope, and true change" OH EM GEE!
      Listen here MarqHell, you are NOT ENTITLED JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE BLACK! Your personal stock has plummeted! Down in the basement and it's not because you're black it's because of your attitude. YOU'LL NEVER GET IT! But good luck anyway!

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  16. Standing for the oppressed is taking a stand for LOVE! Keep on keeping on brother Marquel! Continue to be strong and courageous and full of Hope. Keep your ears and heart perked to the HS and your mind and body ready to act. You're doing it kid! You're really doing it!

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  17. I admire you for having so much class and for always expressing your feelings about being black and all the struggles that follow because of it. People with negative comments obviously cannot relate. I am Mexican married with an African American, I have received comments from "I'm sure you have aids" to "I'm glad your daughter doesn't look black"...I mean endless comments.  It hurts that people can sit there and stereotype good men simply because they are black.  I admit I've cried over some hurtful comments but in the end, I'm happy to say, these people don't know what they are missing!! Much love to you Marquel! Goodluck in your journey moving forward?!

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  18. Thank you for yet another respectful response to an unfortunate situation.

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  19. While I think you're great and handsome. I think they had Chris pegged a long time ago. You would have had a better chance if you made it farther along in the process. BIP was obviously a fill in for fan favorites because just like people loved you they loved Marcus and Cody and Dylan but none of you had a chance to be the Bachelor. The reason is because Chris had the storyline (farm boy looking for a farm girl)...just like Jake did (Wings of love)...Just like Jason did (Single dad jilted). Your story would all be centered around your skin color and who would want that. I think you're in a good situation with your exposure and you will have no problem finding a future mate.

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    1. I think you're very close to hitting the nail on the head, SportyGirl. I love your sense of humor, your wit and intelligence when things are going well for you. But Babe, you simply did not pass the audition - and you certainly were given ample opportunities. I'd love to go shopping with you, or to the opera; but story wise ---- Arie had TOO much game, you had not enough; Chris was just right. And such a gentleman (compared to the other contestant). There will be an African-American Bachelor. But the guy's got to be color-blind which you are not. You're the black half of the cookie looking for your white half. The chocolate chip looking for your vanilla. Just as you can understand the hurt NOT being chosen due to your skin color, a lot of women are offended being chosen FOR their skin color. Was anyone surprised when you jumped at the chance to date lily-white Jackie? I felt pain in my heart even tho I have sleek blonde hair, as I watched Danielle's nappy hair fall forward to cover her tears knowing she never had more than a slim chance. There are many women out there, white women, who prefer black men over white and they can be found. But they are not color-blind, nonracist, either. ABC settled their discrimination lawsuit - they do not HAVE to have minorities on the show so when they do, it is because the candidates earned their places. As you did.

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    2. Sry, I meant to say ABC WON their lawsuit. The discrimination case against the franchise was dismissed by the federal district court. (I'm thinking of Reality Steve's case. That was settled. Totally different issue.
      oops)

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  20. I love you, Marquel! Bummed you're not the next Bachelor, but will follow and support you in whatever you do :)

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  21. Stop your bullshit, your sitting here pulling the racecard when you sent the only black girl home, she specifically stated that she was there for you. YOU made the decision to choose the wrong person, dont blame the network or anyone else for your decision. Yes the producers may have sent certain situations up but no one told you to date every girl who asked.

    Just dont sit here complaining about the racecard when you dissed your own.

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  22. Truthfully, i could not of said this better myself Marquel.

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  23. You people Crack me up. So Marque was suppose to settle for Danielle regardless if felt any connection with her, just because she came there to meet him and she happen to be African american. Wow, why have a show, let's let you guys match and pair everyone up. ABC didn't choose MarqueL simply because they were concern with their ratings. They new that the demographics that watch the show are predominantly white and we're afraid it would hurt their rating. Juan Pablo's season, all the girls were white, geezers I wonder why. Wake up people it's not rocket science. The evidence is there. How many seasons and they have yet decided to be diversified. Its all about ratings and their targeted audience. Which to me is silly, why not try to extend their viewering demographic audience by being open to change.

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    1. No one said for him to 'settle' for Danielle. He never gave her a chance. I would've thought he would have at least given her 1 rose. She did take him out on an awesome date for crying out loud. Had he given her at least 1 rose then people wouldn't be thinking he's such a douche bag. After the rose then ditch Danielle the next week it would have come off WAY smoother, and sincere.
      The show is designed for the fans to 'get into it' and root for certain people to pair up...so i'm not sure how you don't get that?
      ABC selected the most popular person and that was Chris. Maybe if they didn't select Chris we could've said they were prejudiced against a 400 some person town in Iowa and farmers. Yes they want the greatest ratings and Chris had the most appeal, so therefore YOU CRACK ME UP! HAHA

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  24. No sympathy after seeing your true character on Bachelor in Paradise. You ditched the only woman of color who came on the show and specifically was interested in you. You rejected her in favor of someone white, who in turn rejected you for a white guy - you notice the cycle here? "Most people aren't trying to end racist systems, but just trying to improve their position in it." I know this comes off hard, but I believe you missed an opportunity to support another beautiful person of color in this white dominated business that is the Bachelor, but instead you followed the pattern of dismissing someone different in favor of the usual…and NOW you're complaining that you weren't selected? Educate and empower Mr. Martin…please.

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  25. Marquel, I was a big fan of yours till I saw the way you treated women on Bachelor in Paradise -with complete callous disrespect. I believe that's the reason you weren't chosen -not race. I am very disappointed.

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  26. You would have been a complete dud as the Bachelor. Timid and reluctant to kiss the girls. The Bachelor cannot be a guy who is only going to be in the friend zone with women. Only speaking in observations about what a nice day it is or that the woman looks good is pretty dull too.

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  27. Dude, Bachelor in Paradise was A TRAIN WRECK. Nobody is going to watch The Bachelor after someone goes on that. We want to see someone who is still a little mysterious- who we don't know a lot about- and who hasn't been dumped by multiple girls on tv within the span of a month. I'm excited for The Bachelor franchise to support minorities and welcome the first African American Bachelors and Bachelorettes! But your chances were blown when you went on Paradise. Sorry. :(

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  28. Marquel I agree with you that the networks decision did have to do with race. However I disagree with you that going on Bachelor in Paradis didn't hurt you - it did. If you had said no, I believe the network would have been MUCH more likely to cast you. I do disagree wit people who are calling you a "player" on the show. Yes you went out on several dates but you only kissed ONE girl. Jesse was the obvious player. I'm down with you just being friends with girls first and it made perfect sense to me why you went out with several girls. You have to see who you have a connection with before you settle down with just one.

    I wrote to ABC many times telling them to cast you as the bachelor. I liked you because of your FAITH! Do not forget who you are in Jesus Christ!!!

    One last thing, I do totally think the bachelor/ette should cast a black lead but also what about an ASIAN? I have yet to see very many if them represented either.

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  30. I actually think that the execs would have been more keen on having you as the Bachelor BECAUSE of your race! But at the same time, it posed a big gamble. People wanted something different all along. I think that's why they allowed Juan Pablo to be the lead, but we all know how that panned out. Since the ABC execs took a risk and went for Juan Pablo, but it did not work out, they did not want to take a huge risk again. Also, you did not last until the top 3, and although there were people who liked you, you did not have as solid of a package (not enough airtime, going on BIP). It definitely did not help that you went on BIP because it totally deflected your chances of being the lead of The Bachelor. I think at the end, Chris Soules definitely brought the whole package to the table, and it was more a safe, solid choice for the execs to go after. Not to mention, Chris seems to have more a that settled lifestyle where he is definitely ready for a wife and settle down right now kind of thing. As for you, I'm sure you would have been ready for love, but in terms of settling down roots at the moment could have been questionable. As I said, it's more safe to go with Chris who has a higher chance of settling down with the girl he picks because he has such a secure, settled life back in Arlington, Iowa. Nothing against you, but I just think Chris had more of the package that ABC wanted. I think the race thing always comes back to, it would have been a risk and they already took that risk before with not pleasant results, so they did not want to jump in that again.
    On another note. I really liked you and rooted for you!!!! But I do wish that you give Danielle more of a chance when she went on BIP to meet you. She seems amazing and I guess I was a bit bummed that it was explored! But hey, it's all your decisions, and I'm sure you have your own thoughts that weren't shared on the show. Anyways, huge fan of you, the Cookie Monster!! <3

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  31. Sorry but it really bothers me that people keep pushing the Danielle issue. You did give her a chance you could have said no to going on a date with her but you didn't do that. Those people who say you should have dated Danielle seem like they are being stereotypical racists who want to see people with their own race.

    You obviously had a stronger connection with Jackie, who is white and that is OK! Love should see no color! I'm not saying there is anything wrong with Danielle - she seems very sweet and if there was a strong connection with her then sure, pursue that, but was obvious you had a stronger connection with Jackie.

    FWIW, I'm proudly in an interracial marriage.

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  32. That kind of attitude is why you didn't get chosen. Also, being a person of faith doesn't mean you judge people, which is clearly what happened with Michelle, all the while lifting your glass of wine. A person of faith and morals lives it and people can tell what you stand for without it being preached. Everyone watching Sean's season knew he was a person of faith, yet he was refreshing to watch because he was nonjudgmental. I am SO sick of this race card being played, and from all indications on Andi's season, it looked like you were too. Guess not...

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  33. I totally agree with you Marquel. The race card was definitely played here. Its crazy that people never admit to the truth. They try to sugarcoat it with 'smart' reasons/explanations to try and 'justify' their actions.
    We're not fooled. We know the truth!

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