And while all the members of the Moving Company recognized that Amanda's relationship with McCrae represented a threat to the alliance, Amanda targeted only Howard for her wrath upon finding out about the alliance.   (Jeremy was targeted because he was perceived as a “beast” who could win competitions, and as someone who had influence over the "mean girls".)  In addition to making various overtly racist remarks about Howard, Amanda consistently referred to Howard as a “threat” and “dangerous,” despite the fact that once the Moving Company dissolved, Howard was perfectly willing to work with Amanda and McCrae.   Amanda's “dangerous” and “threat” language was picked up by the rest of the house, once Aaryn became HoH for a second time and targeted Howard for eviction.

Candice also was depicted as being a “threat” and “dangerous” by Amanda and most of the rest of the house, despite the fact that the only people she represented a threat to were Aaryn and Ginamarie.    In what was considered a surprising deviation from the usual nomination speech, Ginamarie called Candice a “rat” and “tattletale” among other things (the usual nomination speech usually consists of platitudes about what 'strong players' the nominees represent.)  And during the POV competition, Amanda baited Candice, including using racist language, when Candice tried to tell another houseguest that Amanda was targetting him for eviction next.  A further deviation from the norm occurred at the eviction ceremony, when Candice was not allowed to give her speech uninterrupted – Ginamarie kept shouting Candice down, and Julie Chen watched it happen, intervening only when it threatened to make the show “run long,” and then forcing both women to be quiet, rather than allowing Candice the opportunity to finish her speech.  (Candice did not interrupt Ginamarie's insulting nomination speech.)

But perhaps most damning is the fact that up until Howard and Candice's eviction, the person evicted was one whom was reasonably perceived to be the biggest threat in the house.   David, Nick, Jeremy and Kaitlyn were all legitimately seen as strong (or potentially strong) players who were capable of winning the show.   But while the entire house was fully aware of Amanda's overwhelming influence in the house, and the nature of the threat she represented, two black players who had demonstrated a distinct lack of competence at the game were evicted because they were “threats”.  It is the effort to evict the black players because the are “dangerous,” rather than because they are “floaters,” and the unanimous votes based on those “threats,” that betrays the extent of the “passive” racism in the entire house.

Social Experiment or Petrie Dish for Racism?

While CBS president (and husband of Big Brother host Julie Chen) Les Moonves labeled this year's Big Brother house as a “social experiment” that included the use of language that he found “deplorable,” he was being entirely disingenous.  This is the fifteenth season of Big Brother on CBS, and there have been dozens of other seasons in versions of Big Brother in numerous other countries.   Any “experimental” element of Big Brother disappeared a long time ago, to be replaced by the pursuit of high ratings.  

Instead, what we are watching is a bunch of people with virtually no personal integrity – everyone is so afraid of “going against the house” that, despite a secret voting process, the last five evictions have either been unanimous, or all but (one vote going to evict someone else.)   This lack of integrity has empowered the three most egregious racists in the house.

In an effort to generate those high ratings, the producers have deliberately and consciously cast people who can be counted on to behave inappropriately when under stress – and despite being on camera. The consistent level of personality dysfunction in this season's Big Brother house is unprecedented.  While previous seasons have included one or two extreme personalities, as well as others who have behaved badly under stress, this season is notable for its near complete lack of “level headed” houseguests capable of playing the game with intelligence and some integrity.  

In essence, CBS has created a petrie dish in which racism can thrive.  Perhaps CBS did not intend for the racism in the house to be quite so empowered, but it had to know that was a possibility when they cast the show.  

This is blantantly unfair to both Howard and Candice. Each houseguest is supposed to have an equal chance of winning, based on their game play.   And while neither Howard nor Candice showed any competence at the “game,” did not deserve to win, and might have been evicted by this point absent any racism in the house, the simple fact remains that racism played a huge role in why and how they were evicted.    Howard and Candice played a “passive” game deliberately designed not to provoke a racist response among the other houseguests – and were subjected to racism anyway.  CBS owes them not merely an apology, but should give them $250,000 each (since both could not have won the $500k grand prize) because it was the actions of CBS, its employees, its contractors, and the contestants they selected that not only provided an unlevel playing field, but subjected two black people to the kind of racism that it supposedly deplores.