Another day, another highly controversial episode of Red Table Talk. This time, the hosts sit down with Olivia Jade Giannulli, the youngest daughter of Full House actress Lori Loughlin and designer Mossimo Giannulli who are now serving prison time for participating in the 2019 college admissions scandal that rocked the nation.
However, not everyone at the table was feeling Giannulli’s appearance. A heated debate took place between Jada Pinkett Smith and her mother Adrienne Banfield-Norris aka Gammy. Before Giannulli took her place at the table, Gammy made it crystal clear that she disagreed with the idea of giving her a platform.
“You know, I fought it tooth and nail,” Gammy admits. “I just found it really ironic that she chose three Black women to reach out to for her redemption story. I feel like here we are, [a] white woman coming to Black women for support when we don’t get the same from them. It’s just, it’s bothersome to me on so many levels. Her being here is the epitome of white privilege to me.”
Pinkett Smith rebutted, saying “I understand where you’re coming from, but let me just be clear, I never want to be the thing that was done to me by white women. I never want to be that. I also believe that these are the kind of attitudes that feed the same thing that we’re fighting. It’s like, people look at us, they say you’re Black and you’re female and they automatically put us in a category. So looking at her as being white, young, and privileged, and then putting her in a category is the same thing.”
Giannulli joined the table and admitted to benefitting from white privilege. “I’m not trying to victimize myself,” she said. “I don’t want pity. I don’t deserve pity. We messed up. I just want a second chance to be like ‘I recognize I messed up.’”
She also revealed that she and her family have spoken about the scandal and are fully aware that what happened was wrong. She has since dropped out of the University Of Southern California, and has lost several of beauty influencer partnerships.
When asked by Norris if she’s aware of her white privilege, Giannulli said that confronting it was what she wanted to achieve by coming on the show. “I didn’t come on here to try and win people over,” she admitted. “I just want to apologize for contributing to these social inequalities, even though I didn’t realize it at the time, being able to come here and recognize that I am aware.”
At the end of the conversation, Pinkett Smith applauded Giannulli for having the courage to face the scandal instead of going into hiding.