Clay Aiken is taking a strong stand against Confederate monuments.
The American Idol star and former North Carolina congressional candidate spoke exclusively to Mediaite Wednesday and said the time was long overdue for the statues to be relocated off public lands and into museums.
“I think we can’t forget history, but I think they belong in a museum,” said Aiken. “Germany doesn’t put up statues to its Nazi dead.”
Ouch — but true.
As a son of the South, Aiken said the issue never registered with him growing up, but that visitors from out of state were almost universally alarmed by the presence of the Confederate monument in his hometown.
“I never thought about it because it was just always there, but everybody who comes into town looks at it and is very uncomfortable, whether they are white or black or purple, they are always bothered by that statue.”
After being robbed from a first place finish in Idol, Aiken delved into politics. In addition to his congressional run in 2014, he has appeared on television as a Democratic surrogate and currently serves as a co-host of BoldTV.
Over the last 24 hours, Aiken received renewed notoriety for a viral tweet in which he recalled his past defenses of Trump.
“Remember all those times I defended @realDonaldTrump and believed he was not actually racist? Well… I am a f*****g dumbass. #imsorry,” Aiken tweeted yesterday.
— Clay Aiken (@clayaiken) August 15, 2017
The message has so far received more than 31,000 retweets — and more than a few people left with the wrong impression that Aiken supported Trump in the general election. He did not.
“The number of people who think I voted for that dumbass and now have changed my mind is just baffling,” said Aiken in annoyance. “People are lazy and complacent with information.”
As a contestant on Celebrity Apprentice, Aiken has had more one-on-one time with Trump than most.
“I know him. I’ve been around him quite a bit. I’ve always thought he’s been a disaster,” he said. “He has a 1960s view of gender and race … He likes black people if they stay in their neighborhood.”
[image via screengrab]
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