Skip To Content
BuzzFeed News Home Reporting To You

Utilizamos cookies, próprios e de terceiros, que o reconhecem e identificam como um usuário único, para garantir a melhor experiência de navegação, personalizar conteúdo e anúncios, e melhorar o desempenho do nosso site e serviços. Esses Cookies nos permitem coletar alguns dados pessoais sobre você, como sua ID exclusiva atribuída ao seu dispositivo, endereço de IP, tipo de dispositivo e navegador, conteúdos visualizados ou outras ações realizadas usando nossos serviços, país e idioma selecionados, entre outros. Para saber mais sobre nossa política de cookies, acesse link.

Caso não concorde com o uso cookies dessa forma, você deverá ajustar as configurações de seu navegador ou deixar de acessar o nosso site e serviços. Ao continuar com a navegação em nosso site, você aceita o uso de cookies.

Lori Loughlin’s Return To Acting After Serving Prison Time For The College Admissions Scandal Has Sparked A Huge Debate About White Privilege And Accountability

Loughlin served two months in prison after she and her husband were arrested for bribing their daughters’ way into USC. The actor is currently on a two-year supervised release.

Posted on September 29, 2021, at 11:20 a.m. ET

In case you missed it, Lori Loughlin is returning to acting.

Boston Globe / Boston Globe via Getty Images

It was confirmed on Tuesday that the former When Calls the Heart actor will reprise her role as Abigail Stanton from the Hallmark Channel series in the spinoff, When Hope Calls, for a two-part special premiering in December this year.

Kurt Krieger - Corbis / Corbis via Getty Images

Loughlin first found fame as Aunt Becky on Full House but is now perhaps better known for her involvement in the college admissions scandal.

Boston Globe / Boston Globe via Getty Images

In March 2019, Loughlin and her husband, designer Mossimo Giannulli, were both arrested for bribing their two daughters' way into the University of Southern California.

Ron Galella / Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

The scandal — dubbed "Operation Varsity Blues" — saw Loughlin and Giannulli exposed as a part of a wider group of wealthy individuals who, under the organization of ringleader Rick Singer, bribed their children into elite colleges including Stanford, Yale, USC, and UCLA.

Boston Globe / Boston Globe via Getty Images

A year after their arrests in May 2020, the couple pled guilty to conspiracy charges after they were accused of paying $500,000 in bribes to Singer's purported charity and university officials to ensure that their daughters — Olivia Jade, 22, and Isabella Rose, 23 — were accepted into USC.

Gabriel Olsen / Getty Images for Sephora Collection

Singer, with the help of the Giannulli family, composed false student-athlete profiles to help the girls get accepted into USC as rowing recruits despite neither of them having ever taken part in the sport.

Gregg Deguire / WireImage

Last year, Loughlin was sentenced to a two-month prison sentence, a $150,000 fine, and 150 hours of community service. Meanwhile, her husband agreed to a five-month sentence in prison, a $250,000 fine, and two years of supervised release with 250 hours of community service.

Joseph Prezioso / AFP via Getty Images

The Full House actor began her sentence in October last year and ultimately served nearly two months before being released in December. She is currently on a two-year supervised release.

Rodin Eckenroth / Getty Images

Rumors of Loughlin’s return to acting first surfaced last week after reports claimed that she had been granted permission by a Boston federal judge to travel to Canada for “a filming production project.”

Axelle / FilmMagic

So, in light of her involvement in the scandal, many have been quick to express their disappointment that Loughlin will be returning to screens after her ~brief~ prison sentence.

C Flanigan / WireImage

“It's effing disgusting they're putting this woman back on TV after screwing more deserving students out of a lifetime opportunity to attend a prestigious school,” one person wrote in response to the news. “It's a hard no for me…”

@NBCNews It's effing disgusting they're putting this woman back on TV after screwing more deserving students out of a lifetime opportunity to attend a prestigious school. It's a hard no for me...

Twitter: @NorrinR06303580

Additionally, many viewers pointed out that a lot of individuals struggle to find work after being incarcerated, with one writing that “the elite don't live by the same rules.”

@NBCNews ah the elite don't live by the same rules...any other normal person would struggle after doing prison time.

Twitter: @didihtown

“I have some things on my driving record from over 7 years ago now that are still stopping me from getting work licenses. Cool,” someone else wrote of their own experience trying to find work.

I have some things on my driving record from over 7 years ago now that are still stopping me from getting work licenses. Cool. https://t.co/kKulwA4QpP

Twitter: @Omega_Rex

Loughlin’s return to acting was declared by many as a clear example of how white people, particularly those in positions of power, are afforded far more leniency and privilege than their non-white peers, with one person calling the news “white privileged at it finest.”

White privileged at it finest https://t.co/2TsafxFPxX

Twitter: @kilisarthur

“As usual, no consequences for the rich and white,” added another.

As usual, no consequences for the rich and white https://t.co/EsbvKr8BXH

Twitter: @Tchalla_Fett

The apparent lack of consequences being faced by Loughlin and her daughters became a prominent talking point as fans responded to the news of her new acting job. One user went on to suggest that the issue doesn’t lie with her return to acting, but rather the fact that “she faced no real repercussions.”

The issue isn’t her going back to work, because who wouldn’t. The issue is that she faced no real repercussions and her privilege had her job waiting for her with a bow on it https://t.co/jvXR3zjDcY

Twitter: @justtrawstTrent

“White privilege a Mf…and her daughter on DWTS….they stole scholarships from other people, and they get to live their same life like it never happened….,” someone agreed.

White privilege a Mf…and her daughter on DWTS….🤦🏾‍♂️ they stole scholarships from other people, and they get to live there same life like it never happened…. https://t.co/roGfXMPo2P

Twitter: @bgwill4222

However, others argued that Loughlin had in fact paid the price for her mistakes — particularly in light of the fact that a lot of bribery surrounding college admissions goes largely unnoticed.

Kevin Mazur / Getty Images

“She just got caught doing when many do across many different avenues. She can move on,” someone wrote in support.

@nypost She just got caught doing when many do across many different avenues. She can move on

Twitter: @herefor26202461

Echoing this, another tweeted: “Good for her. Paid debt (more than most) now get back to work.”

@THR Good for her. Paid debt (more than most) now get back to work.

Twitter: @ALOHA77USA

“She was wrong, she tried to help her daughter get into college and actually went to prison for it, lost a bunch of money. We have politicians that do far worse,” agreed another.

@nypost She was wrong, she tried to help her daughter get into college and actually went to prison for it, lost a bunch of money. We have politicians that do far worse

Twitter: @NewtonOnStuff

Similarly, others came to Loughlin’s defense by suggesting that all people who have served time in prison have a right to return to work, regardless of their public profile.

@DEADLINE People shouldn’t be prevented from returning to their career because of what she did. That’s not how the justice system works. Yea she messed up. She paid a price. Let her return to her life as a C- celebrity.

Twitter: @BrewviesWthMatt

“What are you saying, she should never work again because she made a mistake? Do you feel this way for all felons or just high profile ones? I'd rather someone come out of prison rehabilitated and become a productive member of society,” someone wrote.

@nypost What are you saying, she should never work again because she made a mistake? Do you feel this way for all felons or just high profile ones? I'd rather someone come out of prison rehabilitated and become a productive member of society.

Twitter: @HarringtonRod

“We have discussions about those convicted of crimes and who have completed their sentences being able to return to society and continuing on with their lives, including having their voting rights restored. Yet, we do not practice what we preach. Which is it?” agreed another.

@nypost We have discussions about those convicted of crimes and who have completed their sentences being able to return to society and continuing on with their lives, including having their voting rights restored. Yet, we do not practice what we preach. Which is it?

Twitter: @0_Y_G_Holman

The news of Loughlin’s return to acting comes just weeks after her youngest daughter, Olivia Jade, attracted criticism after she was announced as a contestant on this year’s Dancing With the Stars.

A YouTube personality and former USC student, Olivia Jade was ultimately one of the biggest names involved in the scandal, having forged a lucrative career as an influencer before the bribery and misconduct came to light.

And while it's not clear how much the 22-year-old knew about her parents’ actions, Olivia and her sister, Bella — who both posed on rowing machines to help bolster their false resumés — maintain that they were unaware of what was happening behind closed doors.

Gabriel Olsen / Getty Images for Sephora Collection

When it was announced that Olivia would be competing on DWTS, fans of the show were unsurprisingly angry about the decision, with many calling it a demonstration of white privilege.

Eric Mccandless / ABC via Getty Images

“Olivia Jade being a contestant on Dancing With the Stars is a prime example of white privilege,” one viewer wrote. “I'll tell you this: if a black person's parent scammed an entire university, they wouldn't be on TV. I guess ratings prevail over morals.”

Olivia Jade being a contestant on Dancing With the Stars is a prime example of white privilege. I'll tell you this: if a black person's parent scammed an entire university, they wouldn't be on TV. I guess ratings prevail over morals. 🤷🏿‍♀️#DWTS #OliviaJade

Twitter: @_xmarissabee

And as she progresses on the show, fans have remained unimpressed.

“The fact that dancing with the stars gave Olivia Jade arguably the best dancing partner offered on the show serves as proof that you can lie, cheat and scam your way through life…,” another viewer tweeted. “Not cool for young generations watching. What a shame.”

The fact that dancing with the stars gave Olivia Jade arguably the best dancing partner offered on the show serves as proof that you can lie, cheat and scam your way through life... not cool for young generations watching. What a shame #DWTS #DancingWithTheStars

Twitter: @reallyneatnate

In a bid to move on from the scandal, Olivia appeared on an episode of Red Table Talk in December last year and revealed that she hadn’t originally understood why people were angry about the situation, explaining that in her social circles, it was relatively “normal” for families to pay their children’s way into a college of their choice.

Facebook Watch / Red Table Talk

“It’s not fair and it’s not right, but it was happening,” she said. “This was normal. But I didn’t realize at the time that was privilege.”

Facebook Watch / Red Table Talk

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.