June 9th, 2009
06:24 PM ET

Adam Lambert: New civil rights leader?

“I think I reserve the right to talk about my own sexuality.”

Today, Adam Lambert exercised that right, in his own way. In the cover story of the new Rolling Stone magazine, Adam opens up about his sexuality and the impact it has had on his rise to fame.  He wanted to make one thing very clear: “I’m proud of my sexuality, I embrace it. It’s just another part of me.”

Adam has been living as an openly gay man in Los Angeles for 8 years so he expected that there would be rumors about his sexuality as he progressed on American Idol.  He had taken down his MySpace and Facebook pages before he went on Idol but had forgotten about another site.  Risqué pictures from that website quickly made the rounds and Adam says he “didn’t count on that. Wasn’t ready for that.”

He chose to wait to speak out until now and to do it in his own way. He now finds himself in a similar situation to another Idol runner-up, Clay Aiken who famously revealed his own sexuality after the show ended.  Adam is quick to point out the differences though: “Clay Aiken’s gay, and I’m gay, and we couldn’t be more different. The only thing that’s the same about everyone in the gay community is that we’re gay…. Why can’t we just talk about a human community?”

Adam does recognize though that in today’s society things are not that quite that simple.  When talking about his support of same-sex marriage he says, “I’m not asking to get married in your church, but you don’t have any right to tell me I can’t do it.” Yet he is just as quick to say that, “I’m trying to be a singer, not a civil rights leader.”  

Whether or not Adam Lambert is trying to be a civil rights leader, he is certainly putting a new face to the hot button issue of same-sex marriage.  We will be talking about that with our fired up panel tonight on Showbiz Tonight, 11pm Eastern and Pacific on HLN!

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soundoff (30 Responses)


    June 12, 2009 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jk

    Don't care if he is gay. I have known that through the season and voted each week for him. Can't wait for his album. He is so talented. I'm a 62 year old grandma and love Adam!!!

    June 12, 2009 at 6:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Joe Canadian

    Who cares? I liked the guy that won better – he was multi talented and not to take away from Adam who is a helluva singer but the variety of skills the winner had made him a better choice.

    That being said, who gives a rat's butt if Adam is gay? It isn't my thing but as long as he doesn't tell me I have to be gay, I won't tell him he has to be straight.

    June 12, 2009 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
  4. James

    I get soooooo tired of people commenting, remarking on some one's intimate preferences/lifestyle, who gives a DAMN!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Adam Lambert is a remarkable singer, great range and has tons of talent. This is what people should be making reference to along with what great class this man showed the world when he came in second in the American Idol contest. The world would be a much better place if some one makes a comment about some one else that the comments are of some other reasons rather than some body's color, sexual preference, religious taste or where they come from!!! People should shut the pie hole if nothing good comes out!!!

    June 12, 2009 at 6:05 pm | Report abuse |
  5. dsgsm

    Sad. And by the way, a church does have a right to deny same sex marriage. If you do not agree with God's design of marriage as being between a man and a women, don't get married in a church. Go to the beach or somewhere else. I don't tell you to stay out of a gay bar. Take away theology for a minute, nature and the physical body say that only a man and a women's body belong together, no two men, not two women. If everyone was gay, none of us would be here. Do you think God's design for intercourse was anal sex or sucking your boy's face as you state it. Love the voice but not his choice.

    June 12, 2009 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Dino DiPerna

    The real winners this year were us viewers who were priveleged to watch and listen to you for so many weeks. For selfish reasons, I wanted you to keep going through. Your charisma and kindness shown through and equaled your exciting and surprising performances. We really couldn't take our eyes off of you. My wife and I can't wait to see your next act. It's truly a "Mad Mad World" and were elated you're a part of it.

    June 12, 2009 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
  7. quarterback716


    what a funny remark–I am with you.

    June 12, 2009 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Rolling Bone

    how courageous of him to state the obvious in order to get an extra week of press

    June 12, 2009 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Marianne

    In answer to ""me""
    I'm sorry, but your comment to me is not an answer to anything I said.
    "It's not in his past, it's happening right now. His fans talk about him like he's the second coming. He's not" Why do you tell me that? Did I say anything that hinted I thought he was the second coming? No, I didn't. So, your comment to me is totally irrelevant. Unless another Marianne posted something I didn't see. I just don't see what I said that could make you answer what you did. But anyway!

    ""He’s just a guy from L.A. who thinks it’s more important to look & act cool to the right people in order to become rich & famous. That’s all he is."" LOL ALL Hollywood stars are! LOLL Do you seriously think that singers, dancers, actors, musicians wanna do this for free? LOL
    Oh man. That's funny! LOL Of course he wants to be rich and famous!
    How many people are lucky enough to be rich and famous doing something they love?? Sure beats going to a job that you hate day after day! If he can become rich and famous by doing what he loves, and that we can enjoy it in the process, GREAT! What he does is no different than Tom Hanks starring in blockbuster movies and getting paid millions to do so! LOL

    June 11, 2009 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  10. me

    Marianne, it's not in his past. It's happening right now. His fans talk about him like he's the second coming. He's not. He's not classy, he's not a rock god & he's not a role model for kids. He's just a guy from L.A. who thinks it's more important to look & act cool to the right people in order to become rich & famous. That's all he is.

    June 11, 2009 at 1:31 am | Report abuse |
  11. crystal

    woooow! Making the COVER of Rolling Stone USED TO MEAN SOMETHING.... for real, the RUNNER-UP on a crappy contest show open to any1 with little or NO talent????... Com'on Rolling Stone, Stop stretching for cover shots...and leave it for the LEGENDS!! If you don't have any LEGENDS at the time, at LEAST get someone who did SOOOMETHING!! Even the winner would have been better.....

    June 10, 2009 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
  12. JRoss

    "Well, he did say just last week that he wanted to be a role model for teens. I don’t see how that jives with his RS interview in which he flaunts having sex in bars with both sexes, over-drinking, taking drugs, & speaks in the most coarse, disrespectful language ever heard from an American Idol alum. Given the family nature of the show, I don’t know how well this will sit with those viewing families who voted for him." & "I don’t know what has happen to the United States in the past 15-20 years. We went from not ever seeing or hearing about a person’s sexuality to making it a main topic. It use to be abnormal and disgrace to be a homosexual and now it is a normal way of life."
    I guess its a good thing you live in America where you don't have to read his interviews, listen to his music or buy his albums. Great thing about America, people have the right to be who they want to be and make their own decisions. Aren't you fortunate? You could live in China where the government tells you what to do... or not do... I for one LOVE Adam Lambert and couldn't care less who he sleeps with. People who do have far too much free time on their hands. Oh and 100 years ago women had no rights in the United States. Funny how things change.

    June 10, 2009 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
  13. NJ

    i love bubba

    oh, and i love adam too!

    June 10, 2009 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Lester

    Welcome to the movement Adam, albeit a bit late. If Adam wants to be an example to LGBT youth, hiding who you are until you think it is safe is not the way to do it. It reinforces the idea that it is shameful to be Gay. Straight participants were no deleting their facebook and myspace pages and they are not going around hinting they are Bi so they can keep more fans. If Adam or anyone else really wants to help restore marriage equality in California, they can go to repealprop8.com.

    June 10, 2009 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Marianne

    To MH. 15-20 years ago no one could ever imagine having a black President. Thank God the world changed! A lot of people still find it abnormal to be gay. I wish people were more tolerant. I am talking about people in general.
    I also wanted to say this... Isn't it funny how you always hear "the gay community"? and never hear "the straight community?" Just a comment I wanted to add in general, not in answer to you. Just making that clear, LOL

    June 10, 2009 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Marianne

    Benjamin, Do you really think that Adam was the only one who ever tried drugs? Who ever got drunk? Who ever made out in bars? Who ever said the F word? Of course not! You never said the F word? I doubt it. My daughter is 13 years old, and she is looking up to Adam, and I am happy she takes him as a role model. She told me that yes, he did those things. But a whole lot of people did too, and no one makes it an issue cos they are not in the public eye. Very true. I tried drugs in the past, I got drunk in the past, I made out in bars in the past.
    But I KNOW I am a darn good example for my kids (I also have an 8 year old girl) because of what I do today, and because of what I teach my kids. I am a darn good mom if I can say so myself. Despite what I did in the past. I teach my children understanding, forgiveness, and tolerance. Adam is not ashamed of who he is, and he's not ashamed of his past experiences, cos it was those experiences that made him who he is today. Anyway! Sorry if I sounded like a preacher. LOL

    June 10, 2009 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Bubba

    Never watch the show, but as long he don't do nothin' out in the street and scare my horse, I don't care.

    June 10, 2009 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
  18. MH

    I don't know what has happen to the United States in the past 15-20 years. We went from not ever seeing or hearing about a person's sexuality to making it a main topic. It use to be abnormal and disgrace to be a homosexual and now it is a normal way of life.

    June 10, 2009 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Wendy

    It's kind of odd to me that so many care about Adam's sexuality. I really think the focus should be on his singing, which is awesome. All this is getting so much attention and I do feel bad for any one who generates so much publicity in what they do. The media will be hounding Adam for a long time. It should not matter what he does behind closed doors. Obviously there's a lot of people who just like Adam and his singing. American Idol was an awesome season with him!!!! This should not be a gay thing and it should be all about his singing!! Love ya Adam!

    June 10, 2009 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
  20. Laura

    Who cares if he's gay...he is still an incredible performer!! Unfortunately, I think that the pictures and rumors about his sexuality hurt him on AI, but I'm kind of glad that he came in 2nd because now he has the freedom to do whatever he wants to do. Adam Lambert is the only reason I watched AI all season. I couldn't get enough of that voice!! I am a 53 yr old mother of 4...and I can't wait until his first CD comes out. Music makes the world go 'round...and Adam will be making the music! Go Adam...we love you!!!

    June 10, 2009 at 2:57 am | Report abuse |
  21. Tina

    I totally agree with Krystal & James. His sexuality is his business. I care not whether he is gay or straight! His voice and talent as an entertainer had me awestruck each week. Even as just a member of the television audience, I feel honored that we have gotten to watch the making of an icon in the music industry. He knows who he is and what he wants to bring to the industry. The man could sing lullabies and make them hit records! Eagerly awaiting the release of his first CD.

    June 10, 2009 at 2:24 am | Report abuse |
  22. Kay

    I don't care about Adam's sexuality. I love him for the person he is and for the talent he has. I feel sorry that he was pushed to address the issue of his sexuality (which is really nobody's business but his) and I appluade that he's handled it with us class. Watching him on AI taught me a thing or two about myself. He's the best kind of role model for young people.

    June 10, 2009 at 2:12 am | Report abuse |
  23. Benjamin

    Well, he did say just last week that he wanted to be a role model for teens. I don't see how that jives with his RS interview in which he flaunts having sex in bars with both sexes, over-drinking, taking drugs, & speaks in the most coarse, disrespectful language ever heard from an American Idol alum. Given the family nature of the show, I don't know how well this will sit with those viewing families who voted for him.

    June 10, 2009 at 1:16 am | Report abuse |
  24. Barbara P.

    Well put, James. I couldn't agree more. The thing that is truly refreshing and remarkable about Adam is that he is who he is. I hope he never lets anyone change that. I doubt that he will as he has not let himself be drawn away from his dream path , singing in many unique and innovative ways, in spite of all the American Idol hype. The fact that he went through all that hell and kept himself focused and true is a testament to his character.
    I think Adam goes with his gut and what works for him, musically and every other way. We could all learn something from him about not putting people in little boxes and labeling them. Nothing else has ever made me wish I was 30 again (I am 60) and Adam is so charismatic and so real. I think he jump-started my heart; I can feel it beating again.

    June 10, 2009 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |


    June 9, 2009 at 11:38 pm | Report abuse |
  26. LJS

    Alternative life style, straight – WHO CARES!!!! I don't want to sleep with him I just want him to sing and I want to watch him perform. He's fantastic – the most exciting entertainer to come along in years. I think it's sad that the question being asked isn't "what songs will you include in your album"? but continuing to ask people who they sleep with. It's no ones business. You don't expect people to ask you your intimate and private business and you would be amazed and insulted if they had the audacity to do so. Don't as him either – do straight people go down the street saying "I'm Heterosexual"? NO. Then don't expect those with alternative lifestyles to shout "I'm homosexual" from the rooftops either. The paparazzo need to start playing by some rules. I think people should start following them around and spying and taking pix and showing their private lives to the public – we may get surprised at what they do behind closed doors. Adam is smart, well informed and well read, a fabulous singer, entertainer, dancer, performer, actor – just enjoy what he has to bring to the industry.

    June 9, 2009 at 11:24 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Denise Aubut

    REALLY?? Who cares, the man can sing! There are soo many more important problems in the world, why does anyone care? Isnt this the 21 st century aren't we past this crap? Talent is Talent, gay, straight, or green! You go Adam!

    June 9, 2009 at 11:13 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Karin

    Adam is such a talent, and I don't think it is anyones business what he does in his private life. Can't wait to see and hear you sing again Adam...Best of luck.

    June 9, 2009 at 10:25 pm | Report abuse |
  29. James

    Well said, Krystal. Adam is clearly not afraid of courting controversy by being who he is, something I admire about him. He's cleared the way, even, for members of the gay community to bash him because he stated he doesn't want to be a civil rights leader. Unfortunately, some gays (not me) automatically assume that you have a responsibility to your "community" to be a good, positive role model, or fight vocally and visibly for your rights. Adam is just going to be Adam, and live by nobody's rules but his own. That's one of the things (aside from that heavenly voice) that makes him so incredible.

    June 9, 2009 at 9:10 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Krystal

    I'm happy for him. Adam Lambert is attractive, innovative and talented, and I'm excited to hear whatever music he makes. I'm not looking forward to seeing all of the er, unenlightened comments that are bound to pop up, talking about him "flaunting his sexuality" or whatever other garbage idiots spout out, but remember one thing: he wouldn't have had to say anything if everyone else hadn't made it an issue.

    June 9, 2009 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |

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