(AP) — A TV personality who says BET forced him to tone down his typically feminine look to appear on its pre-awards show is rejecting the network’s apology.
BET was contrite after B. Scott, an openly gay fashion and advice columnist who has several television shows and a Web following, said the network yanked him off its red carpet coverage for Sunday’s BET Awards and forced him to change from heels to flats and put on a suit instead of the long flowing black shirt he was wearing. He also accused them of making him pull his long flowing locks back into a ponytail.
BET said the incident “was a singular one with a series of unfortunate miscommunications from both parties. We regret any unintentional offense to B. Scott and anyone within the LGBT community and we seek to continue embracing all gender expressions.”
But Scott, in an interview Tuesday, said the apology was half-hearted and said he was always very clear about what he planned to look like on air.
“I want a real apology from BET. This was a not a mutual misunderstanding or miscommunication. I pride myself on being very professional,” he said.
Scott has appeared on BET in the past, typically wearing feminine attire. He said he was supposed to be the sole host commenting on fashion during the pre-show activities but when he showed up, he was physically yanked off the carpet and told that he had to dress more conservatively, and was later paired with singer-actress Adrienne Bailon.
“This was my day to come out in one of the biggest days of my career and I was publically humiliated,” he said. “I’m just hurt by it. I just want people to know that it’s ok to be who you are.”
Still, Scott said he had some supporters at the network and believes the mandate to change came from a single executive. He also said he could see working with the network again “if I knew for sure that they wanted me to be there and I could express myself how I normally express myself and my brand.”
BET noted that it had worked with several LBGT personalities in the past without incident and said it “embraces global diversity in all its forms and seeks to maintain an inclusive workforce and a culture that values all perspectives and backgrounds.”