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May 7, 2009 at 1:05 PM

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Lambert on Entertainment Weekly cover; thoughts on the gay issue

Posted by Bob Payne

lambert0507.jpgTake a look at the new cover of Entertainment Weekly with the "Loving Adam Lambert" centerpiece.

EW is the latest publication to speculate about a the possibility of having Adam as the first openly gay winner of "American Idol."

Nevermind the fact that EW may be jumping the gun a bit about the winner -- Let's get to the issue, or non-issue, of Lambert's sexuality. There are lots of points of view out there, and I'm going to list a few of them:

1. As far as I know, Lambert has not spoken about his sexuality since Idol began. So despite all the speculation and photos (see below), until he discusses it, no one can say for sure. He could be bisexual, right?
2. Yes, photos did surface showing him kiss another man. But these were staged shots, as you can tell by the makeup.
3. And yes he has performed in West Hollywood cabarets and had the lead role in "Wicked," both of which, for many people, mean he "might as well be wearing a dress" (from "Heathers," look it up).

But come on people. What century is this? Does any of the above matter?

1. Plenty of gay and bisexual singers and other performers have done just fine commercially, so don't worry about Adam's chances of attracting an audience if he does say he's gay. Examples: Michael Stipe of R.E.M., Freddie Mercury of Queen (though both never really talked about their sexuality) and Ellen Degeneres.
2. Lots of people are making a big deal about the chance that Idol could end up with a gay winner, saying that that is somehow noteworthy. But how is that noteworthy? Is it because you think American voters are not accepting enough of homosexuality to support such a singer? Is that really the case anymore?
3. When you find an entertainer who fulfills some kind of need for you, be it visceral, cerebral or whatever, would the single element of the nature of that person's sexuality somehow deaden the entertainment you receive from the person if that sexuality is not the same as you?

It's all interesting stuff to ponder. And for me, I don't want it to become a distraction if Lambert continues his march towards a possible Idol crown. Adam's not a successful entertainer because he might be gay. He moves us because he's a talented artist, a creative human being.

What do you guys think?

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