Zeke Smith has Caitlyn Jenner in his corner.
Jenner -- who revealed in an interview with Diane Sawyer in 2015 that she identifies as a woman and would be transitioning from male to female -- also linked to Smith's op-ed with The Hollywood Reporter
, where he admitted that he was "not wild" about people knowing
that he was trans.
"A person’s gender history is private information and it is up to them, and only them, when, how, and to whom they choose to disclose that information," he wrote. "The only people who need to know are medical professionals and naked fun time friends."
While Smith says he's forgiven Varner
, he still feels that the statements at the tribal council "invoked one of the most odious stereotypes of transgender people, a stereotype that is often used as an excuse for violence and even murder."
"In proclaiming, 'Zeke is not the guy you think he is' and that 'there is deception on levels y’all don’t understand,' Varner is saying that I’m not really a man and that simply living as my authentic self is a nefarious trick," he writes. "In reality, by being Zeke the dude, I am being my most honest self -- as is every other transgender person going about their daily lives."
ET spoke to Varner following the airing of the episode
and he was overwhelmingly apologetic about outing Smith on the show. "I make zero excuses and I defend myself none," he said. "It was horrible. It was reprehensible, and I can only say it was a mistake and I am profoundly sorry and I will move forward. I have changed so much."