Actress Francia Raisa felt that fellow organ donors could be"offended" after negative references to Selena Gomez's kidney transplant in the "Saved By the Bell" reboot drew attention, so she decided to respond.
The reboot made references to Selena Gomez's kidney transplant in two separate episodes of the television show, and it didn't sit well with Francia Raisa, the singer's friend who donated the organ that saved her life.
In response, Raisa took to social media on Saturday to address the situation, concerned that other organ donors took offense to the comments made about the transplant Gomez received in 2017.
Two separate episodes mocked the lupus diagnosed pop singer. In the 6th episode of the reboot, two of the characters disagreed over Gomez's donor. While one argued that Justin Bieber's mom donated the kidney, the other said that it came from Demi Lovato.
A later episode of the reboot featured two of the main characters looking at a wall where someone asked with big painted words if the pop singer even had a kidney left.
Backlash over the references followed from fans, and NBCUniversal and the reboot's executive producers issued a statement of apology. Obtained by PEOPLE, their joint apology read:
"It was never our intention to make light of Selena’s health. We have been in touch with her team and will be making a donation to her charity."
HOW RAISA RESPONDED
Following the apology over the transplant comments, Raisa shared on social media that she does "appreciate" the apology before she voiced her concerns over the matter and wrote:
"But let’s not forget about the donors that potentially felt offended and dismissed from the spray paint written on the wall."
PRIDE AND GRATITUDE
After Gomez received Raisa's kidney in September 2017, the pop singer shared that she had no adequate words to express her gratitude for the "ultimate gift" of life she received from her dear friend.
Even so, Selena Gomez felt self-conscious about the scar left by the transplant. But with time her confidence levels rose as her perspective about the scar changed.
In September, Gomez shared her confidence on social media by posting a swimsuit picture showing the scar left on her thigh. Feeling proud of who she is and what she experienced, the singer felt no need to hide it anymore.