It may feel like I'm flogging a deceased equine with a two by four, but there seems to be a little meat left on this Antonella Barba
story. I've already written more words on Barba than should be necessary
, but judging by our readers' reactions and the media hoopla surrounding Barba, there are still some matters to discuss.
Last night's American Idol
came and went with nary a mention of Antonella's internet “scandal”, the show deciding to go the “pretend nothing happened” route. This is probably the correct decision by FOX, given that a majority of viewers likely know nothing about these illicit pictures. The matter should sort itself out tonight, when, in all likelihood, Antonella will be eliminated from American Idol
But, it's not a certainty that she'll be voted out. She definitely deserves to get the boot after her performances the last two weeks, but America tends to love the heavily scrutinized and the publicity that Antonella is receiving for her photos may get her enough votes to stay in the competition. Of course, if American Idol had their way (and they usually do) Antonella would remain on the show and continue to generate publicity. I guess we'll see tonight.
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Another issue that came up over and over with our readers was the relative offensiveness of the pictures Antonella posed for, taken in the Washington DC WWII War Memorial. If you have basic googling skills, you can find these pictures in a jiff. People are arguing that these pictures show a lack of respect for our troops and those that have given their lives for their country. I know I'm going to be treading on some pretty delicate ground here, but I think everyone needs to relax.
Are the pictures offensive? I guess to some they are, but, in reality, they're fairly tame. You can find far more risque photos in any issue of Maxim. Does it show a lack of respect? Maybe, but I'd chalk it more up to a lack of foresight by Barba. Do you think Antonella Barba, 20-year old American Idol contestant, was trying to deliberately offend and show her lack of respect for our armed forces? No, absolutely not.
In issues like this, you really have to look at intent. Unless Barba is a closet Anarchist, using that particular location was simply a stupid decision made by a young girl, for probably innocent reasons. Give her a break. There's no need to get high and mighty about disrespecting our troops. Furthermore, I'd be willing to bet that if you showed those pictures to all of our military personnel, most would respond “Those are some pretty hot pics,” rather than “I'm deeply offended.”
Regardless, it seems American Idol has decided how they're going to react to the situation: do nothing. Randy Jackson, Simon Cowell, and Ryan Seacrest have all lent their support to Antonella; now it's up to the voters. We'll find out tonight if Antonella will continue on in the competition.
What do you think? Will Antonella be eliminated tonight? Should she?
-Oscar Dahl, BuddyTV Senior Writer