"Studies have shown that even though we try to act without prejudice, sometimes it's just hidden inside us due to our past or surroundings," she wrote on Wednesday. "That hidden prejudice is often influential in our actions. It's our job to spot these issues within others and ourselves and destroy them before they become hurtful."
On Monday's "Police," Rancic speculated that the locs Z debuted on the Oscar red carpet probably smelled like "patchouli oil and weed." Those words drew sharp criticism from Zendaya, 18, as well as Rancic's "Fashion" co-host Kelly Osbourne, who threatened to quit the show over the incident.
Rancic issued an on-air apology on "E! News" on Tuesday, in which she said she didn't intend to hurt anyone with her words. "But I have learned it is not my intent that matters — it’s the result," Rancic said. "And the result is that people are offended, including Zendaya, and that is not OK. Therefore, I want to say to Zendaya and anyone else out that I have hurt that I am so, so sincerely sorry."
The E! host said she learned a harsh lesson about perpetuating damaging clichés and stereotypes and Zendaya appreciated the words, especially since there are so many people who take inspiration from her.
"I appreciate your apology and I'm glad that it was a learning experience for you and for the network," Z said. "I hope that others negatively affected by her words can also find it in their hearts to accept her apology as well."
And while it was hard to stop herself from "being ignorant" and posting the first mean thing that came to mind about Rancic, Zendaya said she thought about the bigger picture and spent several hours on her phone doing research to formulate an educated, measured response.
"I have so many people looking up to me, that I couldn't be scared, wait it out, nor could I just stand up for me; I had to do it for WE," she said. "It is important in this journey to remember that just because someone has inflicted hurt upon us, it does not give us the right to do the same. Body shaming and other hurtful tactics will never get the job done."
She ended her note by quoting Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s words about not succumbing to our darker impulses in trying times. "Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that."