Adam Lambert furor spreads to gay community

Thu Nov 26, 2009 7:46am EST
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By Jill Serjeant

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - "American Idol" runner-up Adam Lambert on Wednesday admitted he got carried away during his racy American Music Awards performance, as furor over his singing and dancing stoked a wider controversy in the U.S. gay community.

More than 14 million people watched the gay, glam rocker close the live AMA telecast on Sunday with a performance that included Lambert kissing a male keyboard player and pushing the head of another performer into his crotch.

Complaints poured in to the ABC TV network that aired the show, and it canceled the Lambert's appearance on its "Good Morning America" news and chat show set for Wednesday.

Yet rival network CBS put him on its "The Early Show" program, where Lambert claimed he had not intended to provoke audiences but declined to apologize, saying: "I'm not a baby-sitter. I'm a performer."

"I admit I did get carried away, but I don't see anything wrong with it. I do see how people got offended, and that was not my intention," he said.

"If it had been a female pop performer doing the moves that were on the stage, I don't think there'd be nearly as much of an outrage at all," Lambert added. "I think it's because I'm a gay male."

The "Early Show" also ran video footage that blurred Lambert's male kiss, and doing so caused the network its own problem. Gay rights groups accused CBS of hypocrisy by also playing unedited video of a kiss between Madonna and Britney Spears at 2003's MTV Video Music Awards.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) said the CBS decision "reinforces an unfortunate double standard that is applied to openly gay performers."   Continued...