Tom Sandoval Of "Vanderpump Rules" Compared His Cheating Scandal To George Floyd And O.J. Simpson, And Now I'm Embarrassed

Tom Sandoval Of "Vanderpump Rules" Compared His Cheating Scandal To George Floyd And O.J. Simpson, And Now I'm Embarrassed

My friends warned me that I should reconsider almost being a Tom Sandoval apologist only because I love the Jalapeño Business cocktail at TomTom and my improv theater is next door to Schwartz & Sandy's.

Tom in a suit with a necklace smiles at an event
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Now, I've learned the error of my ways after Tom's latest controversial statement, which might not be easy to come back from.

If you didn't know, Tom is one of the stars of the Bravo reality show Vanderpump Rules, originally a spinoff from Lisa Vanderpump's time on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

Eight people standing together, dressed in formal wear, some smiling at a social event
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After 10 seasons, the aptly named "Scandoval" took the pop culture world by storm when everyone discovered Tom had an affair with former cast member Raquel Leviss behind the backs of his ex-girlfriend for nine years, Ariana Madix, and the show's producers.

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To understand the nature behind the most hated man in reality TV, the New York Times recently sat down with Tom, and of course, he made matters worse with one of the most flawed comparisons in the history of scandals.

Tom in casual jacket over t-shirt, smiling on the iHeartRadio backdrop
Elyse Jankowski / Getty Images

When asked why he thought "Scandoval" became such a big deal, Tom replied, and everyone gasped. "I'm not a pop culture historian really," he said, "but I witnessed the O.J. Simpson thing and George Floyd and all these big things, which is really weird to compare this to that, I think, but do you think in a weird way it's a little bit the same?"

Tom in an open jacket speaks into a microphone, wearing multiple rings and a necklace


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According to the New York Times, Bravo and his team went into crisis mode, trying to get ahead of his remark, but the damage was done. The internet caught wind of his misguided statement.

Bravo/Twitter: @sur_rules

Twitter: @joshgondelman

Twitter: @carriesnotscary

The comparison between O.J. Simpson and George Floyd is problematic for many reasons. Why did he equate his cheating scandal to murder cases? Why did he name two incidents that involved Black men and heightened race relations? Why did he say this during Black History Month?

In 1995, former professional football star O.J. Simpson was tried and acquitted for the 1994 murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. It became one of the most controversial and high-profile criminal trials in America.

O.J. Simpson seated in court wearing a suit, looking pensive
Lee Celano / WireImage

In 2020, Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd by kneeling on his neck for almost 10 minutes, which led to one of the largest protest movements in United States history.

Crowd of protesters kneeling and holding signs for justice and against violence

In 2023, Tom cheated on his girlfriend on a reality TV show.

Man with shock expression wearing a gray blazer over a white shirt

Sure, Tom was potentially trying to equate the virality of the scandal to the high-profile nature of the O.J. Simpson trial and the 2020 protests, but in an age when Taylor Swift changing her profile picture can become high-profile news — he had plenty of options for comparison besides two of the most contentious times for Black Americans.

Marchers with placards depicting a man's face in a protest for racial justice
Noam Galai / Getty Images

Tom did take to Instagram to issue an apology, writing, "My intentions behind the comments I made in New York Times Magazine were to explain the level of national media attention my affair received. The comparison was inappropriate and ignorant. I'm incredibly sorry and embarrassed."

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But based on everyone's reactions in anticipation for the next episode, which follows the NYT article — he's in even hotter water than before.

Bravo/Twitter: @quigmeyer

Twitter: @9woodMac

Bravo/Twitter: @EtherealDarkne5

So, to my friends who tried to protect me from the shame of almost considering being a Sandoval apologist — I'm incredibly sorry and embarrassed.

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Stream Vanderpump Rules on Peacock.