A quartet of former finalists have come out and vehemently denies charges that American Idol is racist.
Melinda Doolittle (Season 6), Vonzell Solomon (Season 4), Taylor Hicks (Season 5) and Casey Abrams (Season 10) all spoke to TMZ this week and defended the program against charges from nine other finalists that claim Idol shows a racial bias in disqualifying contestants.
Here is what each ex-Idol hopeful had to say:
Doolittle: "It is shocking to see such allegations. In my experience on the show, the 'Idol' team strives to champion everyone, regardless of race. However, each contestant is explicitly told that the withholding of information that may compromise the show or artist, can and will result in immediate disqualification."
Solomon: "I didn’t experience any of that [racial discrimination] ... all of our contracts were clear about how the background checks worked and that we could be disqualified if we lied about our past.
Hicks: "American Idol is for everyone. All walks of life go through the show. Not once did I see the show discriminate towards anyone. It’s all about the votes."
Abrams: I don't know why they are biting the hand that fed them. Those guys beat thousands of people who wanted to be on TV. Idol is picky, but I'm not sure about racist.