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The Schmooze

I Demand Justice For Ousted Jewish ‘Bachelor’ Contestant Jane Averbukh

It was St. Augustine who said, “In the absence of justice, what is sovereignty but organized robbery?”

And so it is lovers of justice all over this world who must now say, “This season’s Bachelor is an organized robber who has burgled the world our chance to see a 26-year-old Jewish woman win ‘The Bachelor.’”

Adrianne “Jane” Averbukh was eliminated from “The Bachelor” during its season premiere on Monday night by bachelor Colton Underwood, who has the name and appearance of the guy wore Vineyard Vines and bullied LGBTQ kids in high school. Before he was the bachelor, Underwood dated a woman we like to call A Modern Day Deborah And Hero To The Jewish People And Women Everywhere, or Aly Raisman for short. Coincidence?

Left, Jane Averbukh. Right, Aly Raisman.

Sometimes the forces that conspire to bring about reality have no shame. Let’s take a look at what happened:

It’s Season 23 of “The Bachelor,” an excruciating show that invites dozens of manicured participants to a battle royale for a wedding proposal. Is that the right place for a nice Jewish girl to be? Trick question! It’s 2019 and the right place for a nice Jewish girl to be is wherever she wants.

And Adrianne “Jane” Averbukh is the nicest of all nice Jewish girls.

The 26-year-old is highly accomplished. She holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Southern California and has an established career in social work, that hardest and holiest of professions. She is bilingual, having learned Russian from her grandmother. She has worked as a school counselor at a public school, providing therapy to teenagers, and is now a social worker at a center for the aging. In her premiere appearance she was warm and laugh-out-loud funny. She wore a stunning pale pink gown with ribcage cut-outs and talked winningly about her dog, and was so gracious that she even sat next to the woman dressed as a sloth. Most importantly, she wore a gold Star-of-David the size of a frisbee around her neck. Your Ramah ex-girlfriend wishes she was Jane Averbukh.

In comparison, Colton Underwood’s current job is “former football player.” Not that there’s anything wrong with that! During the 47-hour-long premiere of “The Bachelor,” Colton, despite being a semi-unemployed toothy virgin, gave the impression of total menschiness. He greeted each woman he met with gentle cordiality, as an upscale maître d’ might greet an octogenarian regular.

Yet as the bizarro dating orgy commenced, Colton barely looked in Jane’s direction. And as the evening came to a close, he left her empty-handed.

Why do bad things happen to beautiful angels with great taste in Judaica? Does Colton Underwood hate happiness? Or did he see, in Jane, not an angel but a ghost?

For in the steamy summer of 2016, Colton Underwood fell in love with a short, outgoing Jewish woman with extraordinary brown waves, emotional maturity, and pride in her heritage. It was Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman. The exceptionally athletic couple shared a bona fide love story. They attended events on each other’s arms, cheered side-by-side at games, worked out together, and went on the emotional journey of watching the TV show “This Is Us.”

Is this us, though? How can we ever be sure? As summer came again, the pressure of their combined obligations grew to be too much. Bachelor in Paradise, lost. They parted ways — Colton to appear as a contestant on “The Bachelorette,” and Aly to advocate for institutional change in American gymnastics after hundreds of girls and women came forward with allegations of abuse by former doctor Larry Nassar.

It is the opinion of the pop-culture desk of the Forward that the similarities in heritage and character of Jane Averbukh and Aly Raisman made it impossible for Jane to ever have a fair chance on season 23 of “The Bachelor.” And so she was unceremoniously rejected by the heart-hurt (we’re guessing) Colton and sent back to West Hollywood to do God’s work: caring for others while looking beautiful.

Give her a season on “Bachelor in Paradise,” give her a season as the Bachelorette, give her a walk-on role on an ABC show, give her justice. Somewhere in the hills of Hollywood, we hope Jane is keeping her chin up and her hair beachy, that gleaming star-of-David slung around her neck like Olympic gold.

Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at [email protected]

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