Earlier in the season, Big Brother 25 removed Luke Valentine after he dropped the n-word in a casual conversation, citing its zero tolerance policy, which triggers an automatic ban for "negative speech or slurs."
After CBS’ Zero-Tolerance Policy triggered and sent one Big Brother 25 Houseguest packing earlier this season, fans are wondering why it hasn’t led to another early ejection following one contestant admitting he used the r-word.
Luke Valentine was booted before the first eviction of the season for casually dropping the n-word in a conversation. While it wasn’t directed at anyone, it did happen in front of Jared Fields, the only Black male in the house.
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Jared, who is the son of fellow Houseguest and Survivor legend Cirie Fields, is now the one embroiled in controversy, with his use of a slur directed at another player. He’s admitted on LIve Feeds, captured by many fans online, that he used the r-word on Friday to describe America Lopez.
Jared has also expressed remorse for his use of the slur (though we suppose it’s possible he literally said “r-word” instead of the whole slur). Nevertheless, fans are convinced that this is as much a violation of the network’s Zero-Tolerance Policy as Luke’s full use of the n-word, and should lead to the same result.
** SPOILER ALERT ** beyond this point as to the current state of the House, because it is relevant to the discussion. In other words, while the broadcast show has not yet revealed the current Head of Household or their nominees, Live Feed fans know.
So ** SPOILER ALERT ** that these things will be discussed shortly. Seriously, move away now if you don’t want to know. Last chance!
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The conversation on Friday was a direct result of how things are proceeding this week with alliances and nominees and targets. Making things more complicated from a production standpoint, it was Jared who won HOH, meaning a forcible eviction would be taking out the current HOH.
After he nominated Cameron and Red for eviction, Jard was having a conversation with Cory about how bad it would be for his personal game if America won the Power of Veto. That’s when he dropped the r-word.
While the actual usage of the slur doesn’t appear to have been caught on the LIve Feeds, Jared’s mea culpa with Cory Wurtenberger — who is in a showmance with America — was captured, and he cops to doing it.
“I don’t think she’s the r-word,” Jared tells Cory in the HOH Room. “I slipped up. I’m sorry about that. Obviously, I was angry about it. I’m willing to admit that.”
After using the n-word, Luke also said he’d messed up. He said he’d meant to use another word, and insisted to Jared he didn’t mean anything by it.
Fans were quick to post the CBS Zero-tolerance policy, which says there is an “automatic ban” for various types of conduct, including “Negative Speech or Slurs.” This section includes “hate speech or threats of harm” directed at various groups, including race and disability.
In other words, as far as they are concerned, Jared is just as much in violation of this policy for his use of the r-word as Luke clearly was for dropping the n-word. So will he be removed from the game? Should he be?
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The incident has triggered a lot of debate on social media, with X (formerly Twitter) blowing up as contestants discuss the word and CBS’s lack — at least so far — of response to Jared’s comment.
Obviously, at this point, it would really throw a wrench in the proceedings of the week to remove the current Head of Household. What happens to their nominees? Is the entire week a wash? On top of that, Jared being in the house with Cirie is the summer’s big twist.
At the same time, a Zero-Tolerance Policy is just that. It’s not zero tolerance unless it’s inconvenient for production. The question comes down to whether or not CBS and those who are surely looking into this think the use of the r-word violates this.
While not as incendiary as the n-word, there has been a growing movement for years to have the r-word also stricken from usage as well, as it is offensive and ableist.
Below are some of the ongoing reactions to the controversy as fans wait to see how CBS and Big Brother might respond to this incident … if at all.
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