Kelly Clarkson Won ‘American Idol’ 10 Years Ago. Shut Up About Her Weight Already.
9:30 am, June 6th | by Laura Donovan
“Kelly Clarkson got so fat,” the people around me said during her 2009 show at the University of Arizona. Meanwhile, I was so pumped to see the very first “American Idol” sing in person (for the third time, as I attended two of her previous San Jose, Calif., performances) that I thought nothing of her frame. Yet no one wanted to remark on her musical talent, bubbly personality, or new tunes. All that mattered was that her looks didn’t meet their standards.
Ever since winning the reality program nearly a decade ago, Clarkson’s weight has been a major talking point. And we need to put a moratorium on this subject matter right now.
The southern girl, whose relationship with Brandon Blackstock has been making lots of headlines lately, addressed the silly weight talk in a new interview with RedBook. Though the 30-year-old says she refrains from indulging in “vacation beer and pizza” during busy spells, she said it saddens her that we live in a culture in which thinness is everything and anything larger than size 2 pants is a source of shame:
“I’m so over it. What really upsets me is when [fans] say, ‘You’re tiny. What would they think of me?’ That’s heartbreaking. I’ve always been that kid who was chunkier than the others. I don’t think it’s fair to put that kind of pressure on girls. I’m a very normal person. I’m someone who’s sick of trying to bend to what society tries to bend you to.”
Of course she’s sick of it. Up until she climbed to the top on “Idol,” she was just a girl from Texas with big musical aspirations. Then she got famous real fast with zero hand holding or guidance. The journey was tough without a mentor, she told the publication:
“I’m going to be completely honest — I had no one looking out for me. They were looking out for the show, and it was horrible. I was 19 years old. I was smart enough to know that it wasn’t about me, but that didn’t make it any easier,” she confesses. “I’m all cried out about it, but my first four years, I hated my life; I almost quit a dozen times.”
It can’t be easy transitioning from private citizen to celebrity over the course of a summer, especially when people quickly begin commenting on your frame and continue to do so for ten years. Last week, Us Weekly wrote that Clarkson has lost 30 pounds, which is awesome if that’s what she wanted, but the report serves as another reminder that the public has fixated on this silly, irrelevant, destructive story for far too long. She was the very first “American Idol,” guys, and in my opinion the best one to date. Can we focus on that for a change?