Pop singer Kelly Clarkson, 29, says her "eyes have been opened" by the "hate" she received after tweeting that she was a fan of fellow Texan Ron Paul. She initially posted to Twitter on December 29 a comment from her WhoSay account:
"I love Ron Paul. I liked him a lot during the last republican nomination an no one gave him a chance. If he wins the nomination for the Republican party in 2012 he's got my vote. Too bad he probably won't."
She clarified her statement through a series of Tweets, adding that she is a Republican who believes "Ron Paul is about letting people decide, not the government." When challenged by some followers about Ron Paul's mixed history on gay issues, Kelly wrote:
"I love all people and could care less if you like men or women. I have never heard that Ron Paul is a racist or homophobe?"
"I have never seen or heard Ron Paul say anything against gay people?"
After receiving numerous responses -- some supportive, some angry -- Kelly again posted to WhoSay:
''I am really sorry if I have offended anyone. Obviously that was not my intent. I do not support racism. I support gay rights, straight rights, women's rights, men's rights, white/black/purple/orange rights. I like Ron Paul because he believes in less government and letting the people (all of us) make the decisions and mold our country....''
She then defended her right to speak her mind, asking people not to be hateful or to attack her:
''If you don't agree with me simply unfollow me.... I hope you don't because I would love the chance to hear what you have to say but if you're so blinded by hate you can't seek peace and progress then that is your unfortunate prerogative.''
Clarkson was the first winner of American Idol, and gained a following among some in the gay community for songs like, "My Life Would Suck Without You," "Walk Away," "Because of You," "Miss Independent," and "Since you Been Gone." Clarkson has said that she has been accused of being gay herself because she can't find a man who will date her. She quashed the lesbian crushes in 2009 and gay rumors in 2011, saying both times that she doesn't care if her fans are gay or straight.
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