MTV announced on Monday that it’s cutting ties with Dee Nguyen, a star of its reality competition show “The Challenge,” over her recent tweets about the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. Many Twitter users, including her co-stars, have called her comments offensive.
Nguyen, 27, first came under fire after she participated in Blackout Tuesday last week, a social media initiative where people posted a black square instead of photos or videos of themselves. It was an effort to make more space for black voices on platforms like Instagram and Twitter. She was called out for continuing to post images of herself that day.
“READ THE F——- ROOM,” one Instagram user commented, according to screenshots shared by her “The Challenge” co-star Bayleigh Dayton. “All you posted was a black square and went about your day and posting your lame a– thirst traps. People are dying.”
Nguyen responded: “People die every f—— day. U don’t know me or what I do. I suggest you wake the f— up and get off social media.”
The reality star also tweeted, according to Dayton’s post, “Idk why some of you think I’m anti BLM. I’ve been saying that since the day I lost my virginity,” alongside the angel emoji.
Nguyen has since deleted her tweet and Instagram comment.
When Dayton posted the screenshots on Sunday, she also shared her own feelings about her co-star’s remarks.
“THIS IS NOT HOW YOU SUPPORT BLM,” she tweeted. “I’m disgusted and disappointed. THIS IS NOT A TREND. THIS IS LIFE OR DEATH FOR US. Posting for clout about the death of black people? Shame on you @deenguyenMTV.”
Dayton’s husband, Chris “Swaggy C” Williams, who also stars on the show, criticized Nguyen for “using BLM for clout,” he wrote on Twitter also on Sunday.
Other stars of “The Challenge,” made their feelings known, as well. Aneesa Ferreira tweeted Tuesday “thx @ChallengeMTV for saying you will be intolerant of racism and ignorance,” and Tula “Big T” Fazakerley retweeted a post that seems to reference Nguyen’s behavior. “Anyone using BLM for clout is a DISGRACE,” it read.
I am sorry for the insensitive tweet I posted earlier. I was being defensive and not speaking from my heart. But there’s no excuse. I also want to extend an apology to Bayleigh and Swaggy- who are my cast mates and deserve my respect and compassion.Dee Nguyen @deenguyenMTV
“I am sorry for the insensitive tweet I posted earlier,” she wrote. “I was being defensive and not speaking from my heart. But there’s no excuse. I also want to extend an apology to Bayleigh and Swaggy – who are my cast mates and deserve my respect and compassion.”
She added, “BLM to me every day. I’m trying to do the best I can with what is currently accessible to me.”
On Monday night, MTV addressed the controversy.
“As a result of Dee Nguyen’s offensive comments on the Black Lives Matter movement, we have severed ties with her,” the network tweeted. “Out of respect for our Challengers, we’ll air our season as planned. We strongly condemn systemic racism and stand with those raising their voices against injustice.”challengemtv✔@ChallengeMTV ·
As a result of Dee Nguyen’s offensive comments on the Black Lives Matter movement, we have severed ties with her. Out of respect for our Challengers, we’ll air our season as planned. We strongly condemn systemic racism and stand with those raising their voices against injustice.challengemtv✔@ChallengeMTV
Shortly after, Nguyen extended a more general apology via social media.
“The last 24hrs have made me realise what is important and that is forgiveness,” she wrote. “I would like to offer my sincerest apology to my colleagues to whom I have hurt directly and indirectly due to my insensitive remarks.”
Nguyen continued: “Let me be clear I am a POC that cares about BLM. I believe in this movement and I’m stepping away from social media to focus on my wellbeing and mental health. This is not a goodbye, it’s a I will see you again. To my fans thank you for believing in me and for your support. It helps. I see every single one of you and I remember your stories. Stay strong and safe my friends.”
Nguyen hails from Sydney, Australia, but recently relocated to Kansas City, Missouri. Her first MTV gig was the network’s U.K. show “Geordie Shore,” and she joined “The Challenge” two seasons ago. She went on to win her second season and is a cast member on the 35th season, which is currently airing. She’s consistently been one of the top players but has been criticized for her ruthless social tactics.
Spokespeople for Nguyen did not immediately respond to TODAY’s request for comment.
This article was originally posted on yahoo.com/entertainment/.