The BET Awards had more drama behind-the-scenes than on air. In the hours following the pre-show, we learned that B. Scott, the famous blogger known for his gender-bending style, was asked to remove his heels and makeup to host the style stage on the red carpet.
Celebrities, bloggers and fans voiced their support for B. Scott, and several blogs and media outlets reprimanded BET for discrimination in their coverage of the incident. B. Scott addressed the unfortunate experience on his site in an open letter, saying:
“It’s not just about the fact that BET forced me to pull my hair back, asked me to take off my makeup, made me changed my clothes and prevented me from wearing a heel. It’s more so that from the mentality and environment created by BET made me feel less than and that something was wrong with who I am as a person.”
He also revealed that his outfit choices were discussed and approved beforehand and that producers were present during every step of his preparation for the show, including makeup application. It’s confusing then that he was asked to remove his makeup and change after his first segment with A.J. Calloway.
BET doesn’t offer a concrete explanation in their statement, given Monday to the Associated Press. Instead, the network apologizes for their “unintentional offense” and vaguely cites “miscommunications from both parties”:
“BET Networks embraces global diversity in all its forms and seeks to maintain an inclusive workforce and a culture that values all perspectives and backgrounds,” the statement read. “The incident with B. Scott 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.”