Georgia Love has opened up about a ‘heartwarming’ moment she had with late chef Jock Zonfrillo, after being accused of casual racism two years ago.
The former Bachelorette star caused controversy in 2021 when she posted a video to her social media account of a cat in the window of a Melbourne Asian restaurant, writing ‘Shop attendant or lunch?!’ as the caption.
The backlash was swift, with Georgia retreating from the spotlight after being ‘cancelled’ for the video, which she deleted and apologised for.
Now, in an interview with Stellar’s podcast Something To Talk About, Georgia has spoken out about being ‘cancelled’, the effect it had on her loved ones and how much she “deeply deeply” regrets the video.
During the chat, Georgia spoke about the support she received from two people in particular who made a ‘strong effort’ to reach out to her - Erin Molan and Jock Zonfrillo.
“Both I had bits to do with through work over the years but didn’t really know closely and personally at that stage and both of them made the effort to reach out to me,” Georgia said.
“Both of them said the same thing, they wanted to reach out to me. They’re both people that have had negative things happen in their lives and careers and that was a really lovely kind of heartwarming thing for me, was feeling understood by other people in the industry as well.
“So that was a lovely thing to feel that people were there to explain how to get through this and not let that guilt - and my being so let down in myself - not let that overtake everything.”
Georgia went on to say that she feels lucky to have experienced Jock’s warmth before he shockingly passed away at the age of 46 earlier this year.
“Everybody has a beautiful story to tell about Jock. It always happens to the best people doesn’t it? Hearing so many other people’s stories about him and how kind he was to them just shows he really was that person and I’m very grateful to have had the same interactions with him while he was here,” she said.
Georgia went on to say she was ‘mortified’ when she was called out for casual racism over the video, saying she ‘gave no thought’ to initially posting she was seeing it through her ‘privileged lens’.
“The second somebody reached out to me and said that it was, I was absolutely mortified. I obviously took it down immediately and apologised, but I understand that that was too late and not enough for a lot of people,” she said.
“Knowing that I caused offence, hurt people and made people feel marginalised in that way is still really upsetting to me. I didn’t want anyone to think I would purposely upset or offend anyone; to this day I’m so deeply sorry for the fact that I did. I’ve done a lot of reflection. I’ve learnt a lot.”
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