Ever since David Archuleta appeared on our radar screens, he’s been a lightning rod for controversy and drama. What he does and how he does it has been debated, dissected and discussed ad infinitum. The lively and often acrimonious exchanges has engaged fans and non-fans in an endless cycle of verbal swordplay and his polarizing effect on the people who follow him is well documented. Not David’s fault of course but there’s something about that cherubic demeanor that invites overwhelming parental protective instincts coming into direct confrontation with those who are equally determined that he should break free from all that mollycoddling and just grow up and be a man!
From that immortal moment when he sang ‘Imagine’ on Idol – where he was chastised for, apparently, choosing not to sing the first 2 verses which included the lines “Imagine there’s no heaven/and no religion too”, to ‘Daddygate’ where supposedly David was terrified of his father’s verbal abuse, to that controversy of ‘Stand By Me’ which included a sampling of Sean Kingston’s ‘Beautiful Girls’ where again supposedly David’s father insisted that American Idol had to pay extra royalties in order for David to sing that line during Top 4 night, he has attracted a litany of views both sobering and vitriolic. Let’s not forget about the speculations on his sexuality then and still ongoing. And what about David’s apparent inability to hold a decent interview? Well we all know the answer to that by now.
In short David Archuleta has had to wade through a minefield of public perception both positive and negative, very often not of his choosing. The latest brouhaha occurred recently when David innocently accepted an invitation from Charice to attend her show which was held in a gay club in New York- which David had no idea that it was such a place. Of course the minute people saw him there, tongues started wagging and fingers started tapping on handphones. Tweeter did more than just tweet and soon the internet was ablaze with the news that David Archuleta was spotted at a “gasp!” gay club. Many of those who tweeted the ‘news’ did clarify that David was really there to support Charice. The situation would have calmed down quickly if not for the fact that David decided that he had to clear the air on why he was there by tweeting that he was there to support Charice and that he “would never intentionally go to such a place“. The result was a firestorm of condemnation and accusation from the gay community that he was homophobic. Poor David had to scramble and try to mend fences and soothe ruffled feathers by tweeting that he was not homophobic and the club was just not his scene but the ‘damage’ had apparently been done and he was vilified.
For me I truly believe that David meant it, without any malice, when he said that he would never frequent a gay club on purpose, not because he’s anti-gay but simply that it was not his thing, pure and simple. Just like many heterosexuals would not frequent strip joints simply because they had no taste for it. It’s not a judgment but a preference. The only ‘crime’ that I would find David guilty of is that he didn’t leave well enough alone. In his eagerness to NOT offend anybody he felt he had to explain the situation which made it even worse for him. There’s a saying “Let sleeping dogs lie” which in this case he would have been well advised to do just that. Instead the beast woke up and gave him a not too subtle bite! There’s a valuable lesson from this. Sometimes it’s much better to just keep silent until and unless one becomes much savvier in handling such sticky situations.
It’s very interesting that David would immediately choose Marina and the Diamonds “I’m Not A Robot” as his song of the week:
You’ve been acting awful tough lately
Smoking a lot of cigarettes lately
But inside, you’re just a little baby
It’s okay to say you’ve got a weak spot
You don’t always have to be on top
Better to be hated than love, love, loved for what you’re not
Guess what? I’m not a robot, a robot
Guess what? I’m not a robot, a robot