Clay Aiken is ready to set the record straight on Sunday night’s episode of American Idol, in which drag queen Ada Vox got sent home. In his guest article to The Huffington Post, he plays devil’s advocate by arguing that her elimination wasn’t because she (or her gay alter ego Adam Sanders) is part of the LGBTQ community, but simply because she wasn’t the strongest contestant.
Aiken himself was the runner-up on the second season of the show, even though he wasn’t openly gay at the time. In the article, he questioned the countless tweets that made the assumption that America was not ready for a drag queen on Idol, and noted that the hit series is first and foremost a singing competition.
“Let me be clear: Vox is a star. And Vox can sing. Her performances of ‘And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going’ and ‘Circle of Life’ were rousing spectacles ? but they were not master classes in singing,” he wrote. That outraged Twitter user was correct: This is a competition about singing. And Ada Vox, entertaining performer though she doubtless is, was not the best singer. No, ma’am.”
Aiken did, however, praise the accomplishment of Vox being a competitor on the show in the first place: “Most of us were thrilled to see a contestant breaking down another barrier. We were excited to see an out and proud contestant doing well and living their truth on an American institution. I certainly was. And when we are proud of someone and rooting for them as fiercely as so many of us were, it’s easy to ignore their shortcomings.”
He ended his article on a hopeful note, predicting “that Ada Vox will be one of the first ABC ‘Idol’ alums to achieve that stardom.” The stardom he is referring to is that of Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood in the show’s prime.
Aiken posted his article on Twitter, nodding at its potential controversy by writing, “Bring on tomatoes.”
— Clay Aiken (@clayaiken) April 30, 2018
Read the full article here.