'American Idol' winner Trent Harmon says 'anyone' can eat at his family's Mississippi restaurant
The enormity of winning the final season of "American Idol" is still sinking in for Armory, Mississippi, native Trent Harmon less than a week after taking the season 15 crown following a battle with R&B powerhouse La'Porsha Renae. "It has and it hasn't," Harmon, 25, told TVGuide.com about whether he's getting used to being the champ. "I think it's going to come in stages. Just the other day, I got to sing the National Anthem at Manny Pacquiao's last fight. That was something I though I'd never get to do... every day I'm doing things I didn't think I'd get to do."
'American Idol' Winner Trent Harmon on His Big Moment & What's Next
One of the ways he's learning to deal with the spotlight is understanding how important it is to give thoughtful answers to questions that fall be outside of the "how would you describe your personal style?" One of those came up in the TVGuide interview, when Harmon was asked to respond to Renae's controversial comments about her (and Trent's) home state's HB1523 "Religious Liberty" legislation, which will allow businesses, individuals, and any religiously affiliated organizations to deny service to LGBT people, single mothers or others who offend someone's "sincerely held religious belief."
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"You know, I was brought up in church," Trent said. "I still go to church... I was brought up to treat everyone equally. I come from a restaurant background, and anyone that walks into our restaurant, they can eat there. And I think that you should treat all people equally and respectfully, and that's what I do, and that's what I'm going to continue to do no matter what law is passed. That's where I stand on it. Love all people. Period."
'American Idol' Runner-Up La'Porsha Renae Says LGBT Comments Got 'Twisted Up' in Interview
Harmon's answer came in the wake of comments made by Renae, which she later claimed were "twisted." In a post-show interview after the finale last week, Renae drew fire for saying, "they are people just like us... They're people with feelings. Although all of us may not agree with that particular lifestyle for religious reasons -- whatever the reason is. You still treat each other with respect... I am one of the people who don't really agree with that lifestyle. I wasn't brought up that way, it wasn't how I was raised."
And while she said she has "a lot of friends and a lot of people I love dearly who are gay and homosexual," the comments drew some serious social media backlash for the 22-year-old singer. She quickly took to Periscope and explained that she meant no offense with her answer. "I tried to be as open and honest and neutral as possible," she said. "But that's the way interviews go. Sometimes when you do interviews, it gets twisted up... I wasn't trying to offend anyone."
Billboard reached out to a rep for Harmon.
Check out more from the Idol finale in the gallery below!
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