Lori Loughlin’s daughter, Olivia Jade, is catching heat on social media after opening up about her parent’s role in the infamous college admissions scam. The 23-year-old broke her silence for the first time on Monday during an interview with Jada Pinkett Smith for her Facebook Watch series, “Red Table Talk.”
During her appearance, Olivia spoke about the scandal in which Loughlin and her fashion designer husband Mossimo Giannulli, paid half a million dollars in bribes to get their two daughters into the University of Southern California as rowing recruits. They are now serving time in prison — something that Olivia said was tough for her.
“It’s been hard, I think, for anybody,” she told Pinkett Smith in the interview cited by Fox News. “No matter what the situation is, you don’t want to see your parents go to prison. But I think it’s necessary for us to move on and move forward.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Olivia said she deserved a second chance.
“I think that what hasn’t been super public is that there is no justifying or excusing what happened because what happened was wrong,” she said. “And I think every single person in my family can be like, ‘That was messed up. That was a big mistake.’ But I think what’s so important to me is to learn from the mistake, not to now be shamed and punished and never given a second chance because I’m 21. I feel like I deserve a second chance to redeem myself, to show I’ve grown.”
Rather than garner sympathy, Olivia faced massive backlash.
“My thoughts on Olivia Jade: she’s incredibly tone deaf. Her parents committed a felony to get her into college. Her parents are going to ‘jail’ and she can still live her life normally. I have zero compassion for anyone involved in this situation,” one Twitter user wrote.
“I’m 7 mins in to Olivia Jade on Red Table Talk but y’all….. Olivia describing her mom’s prison sentence as ‘a reflection period.’ wheeewwww!!! I’m buckling up,” another user wrote.
Others slammed Olivia, who is a social media influencer, for using the interview as an opportunity to market herself.
“I get what you were trying to do here, Jada (truly), but that woman used y’all to rehab her image so she could go back to selling cleansers on IG. Dassit. Mrs. Banfield-Jones was 100% correct. This #OliviaJade interview didn’t have to happen,” a viewer noted.
“Exactly this is a way for Olivia to get back in the spotlight and get endorsement deals without lifting a finger or actually being held accountable. It’s really upsetting,” another added.
Among Olivia’s critics was also Pinkett Smith’s mother, Adrienne Banfield, who admitted she did not want Loughlin’s daughter to appear on the show.
“I fought it tooth and nail,” Banfield-Norris admitted, according to People. “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.”
She added, “Her being here is the epitome of white privilege to me.”