Two reality singing shows — NBC’s The Voice and Fox’s The X Factor — turned the competition over to America this week, with viewer votes determining which contestants would be safe and which ones would have to sing to stay on the show.
On The X Factor, the singer who eventually got sent home was Jason Brock, an openly gay performer (he never said so explicitly, but made a show of pinching host Mario Lopez‘s rear end during the first live show and dedicated his final performance to “the gays and Japan”) whose repertoire on the show included Jennifer Lopez’s “Dance Again” and Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” The Voice sent home three contestants, including De’Borah Garner — a lesbian who reveled in her androgyny. (In this case, it was De’Borah’s coach, Christina Aguilera, who gave her the ax — but it was the audience vote that put her on the chopping block.)
De’Borah was, hands down, one of the best competitors on The Voice, consistently winning over the coaches and the crowd with her soulful takes on snogs like Train’s “Hey, Soul Sister” and The Fray’s “You Found Me.” And while Brock certainly wasn’t the best contestant on The X Factor, he was far from the worst. In the same week when three states — Maine, Maryland and Washington — approved same-sex marriage by popular vote, we have to ask: Why were Brock and De’Borah among the first to go?
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