Caleb Johnson: ‘Retards’ Controversy Won’t Tarnish American Idol Win [VIDEO]

'Idol' Winner Caleb Johnson Says His Scandal Won't Tarnish Victory

Several weeks before the American Idol 2014 finale, future winner Caleb Johnson found himself in hot water with many fans after using the word “retards” to describe his online critics. He then went on to diss his fans by saying that didn’t “need 10,000 people telling me you should sing this, you should sing that, listen to me, listen to me. Fortunately guys, I’m going to listen to myself, whether you like it or not.”

Caleb went on to issue several apologies, including one on camera, pretty much saying that he had made a stupid mistake and he was sorry. He also clarified that he never meant to insult his fans, but was frustrated with the haters harassing him via social media.

Caleb Johnson Retards

In an interview right before the final American Idol results were announced, Caleb Johnson told Hollyscoop the scandal over calling his online critics “retards” would not tarnish his American Idol win if he came out on top.

“No, you know, this whole experience is about… you’re learning and you’re growing. And it’s just such a humbling and amazing experience.”

Caleb’s hardcore fans have defended their choice for American Idol winner by saying that everyone makes mistakes. We certainly don’t think Caleb meant to offend with his controversial remarks about his critics or his fans. If anything, we think Caleb has certainly learned from this experience that some things are just not okay to say, no matter who you are. He’s just very lucky that he didn’t end up sinking his own ship and losing American Idol over his thoughtless words.





  1. caleb shouldnt thats one thing he calls his fans retarts even thow he was great beast but acting like he did he didnt deserve to win. i wish it was jena or if jessica was in it i wanted her to win it. she has the best voice cant wait till next season . kick out jeniifer lop shes no good for the show she just like to dress up like oh look at me its not about her its about the singers

    • Zebra, you might invest in a writing comprehension course. That was hard to read. Just saying.

    • This season was who got off out of the starting blocks and Caleb did. He had Number 13 (easy to remember for 13th AI) and kept it as all others did, but AI didn’t do much elaborating of the Call numbers after first presentation-in which jena was expected “THEN” as a “WILDCARD” to take an early exit. Thus, Jena had to accrue fans latter to try and catch up with Caleb and people at that time had Caleb alrerady “locked in to 13”. Jena was Number 08 call in. People say Caleb is a great guy but (lol) (runs his tongue too much before he stops and thinks) much like Steven Tyler. Non-fans gave Caleb (as well as jena) some un-called for remarks-in which Caleb stated he was too sensitive of and lashed out before he thought.

  2. Caleb made a unfortunate comment that based on his personality, I think was taken out of context. Considering he is supposed to be so “arrogant”, I have not seen a more friendly, outgoing guy in all the top ten this year. That includes Humble Alex. Caleb is always the first to congratulate other performs after a good performance. He was always the most outgoing and friendly during group interviews. And he apologized several times for his comment. Based on that, I think at this point, it is only angry, biter people that have a need to continue seeing fault in him.

    • sometimes this show brings out the worst in people. he apologized. what more do people want?? let it go, already!

    • The use of the word “r*tard” was not ok and is hurtful to members of the
      special needs community. He used the word in a negative way indicating
      that people with cognitive and developmental disabilities are bad people
      with no common sense who are harassing him. There are a number of
      words that, as society in general, we no longer view as appropriate to
      use in referring to groups of people …this is one of them…I can see why
      people would be offended.

      • No one ever said the words Caleb used was OK. That is not the issue. But, words such as r*tard and gaaye are words to are tossed around everyday by a large number of the youth today, without a hurtful intent implied. Not saying it is right … But that is the way it is. So because of that and based on the fact that not only is Caleb one of the friendly and outgoing of all the top ten contestants I saw this season. But he also apologized numerous times. … I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt. If you choose not to, that is your .

      • That’s why Carrie and David Cook are my top 2 favorite winners from this show. They know better than to bite the hands that fed them.

      • Carrie is one of my favorites. She is always being attacked on the video comments. She is a lovely person so I don’t get it.

      • He also was nice to take Jena to her prom . He had said he would and followed through..

      • Agreed. If Caleb had used the “N” word the shock and condemnation would’ve been heard
        all over the media. Use of R word should be condemned just as equally.

      • I really don’t think he had someone’s disabled child in mind when he said that. He was using it as a slang expression and not thinking about how someone else might be hurt by it..

    • He directed his anger at the wrong people. It’s the producers who have the ultimate say-so over what a contestant sings. They are the ones who came up with the fan request theme and they are the ones who narrowed the requests down to the Aerosmith song, I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing, which has become rather over-done on these shows.

      And if he thinks that he’s going to have full control over his album, then he needs to watch the video of Bo trying to submit songs to the label.

    • Lets face it, some people just live for this stuff…hoping someone will say something that can be used against them

  3. For me, this is not a PC issue. It is an issue of respect, and human
    decency. Something that is instilled in us long before we are 23.
    What’s in our hearts, and head is generally what comes out of our mouths.
    If you aren’t a person who refers to people as the r*tards, then that word doesn’t even come to mind.

  4. It may not have tarnished his win, but if he keeps that attitude and he keeps commenting on it the way he does, it’s going to tarnish his future. A mistake is one thing, but to keep going with it is entirely different.

  5. When you are saying things into a microphone and in front of a camera –
    when you are trying to increase a following – if your mind doesn’t edit
    your mouth – you are not ready to be a celebrity or an artist.

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