Survivor’s Jeff Varner fired from day job after outing trans contestant Zeke Smith
Survivor contestant Jeff Varner has been fired from his day job after he controversially outed another contestant on the show as transgender.
Varner was fired from his position as a real estate agent at Allen Tate Realtors.
He was told that he was “in the middle of a news story that we don’t want anything to do with”, reported the Greensboro News & Record.
Varner was dropped from a position just a week after he was taken on by the company as a realtor.
In a post on Twitter he wrote “New firm, New start, New life.”
Varner, who is out as gay himself, outed the contestant, Zeke Smith, on television in front of other contestants.
He tried to argue that he was blindsided when Smith decided to get rid of Sandra a week ago, he admitted to host Jeff Probst that he thought he was going to be eliminated.
“There is deception here. Deceptions on levels Jeff that these guys don’t even understand,” Varner said to Smith. “Why haven’t you told anyone that you’re transgender?”
Varner has apologised multiple times for the outing.
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“I offer my deepest, most heart-felt apologizes to Zeke Smith, his friends and life allies, his family and to all those who my mistake hurt and offended,” he wrote on Twitter. “I recklessly revealed something I mistakenly believed everyone already knew.”
“Being trans and transitioning, it’s a long process; it’s a very difficult process. There are people who know,” Smith, who had planned to come out as trans, added.
“It was as if he had been preparing for this absolutely unpredictable, completely public, and incredibly vulnerable moment for his entire life. His composure was astounding,” Probst told Entertainment Weekly.
“He wanted to be seen as a ‘Survivor’ player. Not the first transgender ‘Survivor’ player. I really respected that distinction and I understood it,” he adds.
“Outing someone is assault,” he said, taking aim at Varner.