Yesterday, I read a passage from Sista Souljah‘s Midnight: A Gangster Love Story. Midnight, the protagonist, is doing a favor for his friend Bangs and begins a conversation with her grandmother about the father of Bangs’ child. Bangs told Midnight that the father of her child was killed in an accident. However, the grandmother, in defense, slipped and mentioned that the father is actually her son. Bangs, barely a teenager, had a child by her alcoholic uncle. The grandmother deflected the situation, “And we don’t talk about that in here.” A notion to leave the past in the past and to never bring it back up again.
I had this eerie feeling after reading this passage. Even though the characters are fake, it still is very real. Today, it became even more real. R. Kelly was questioned about his sexual lyrics and how his inappropriate relationships with minors calls us to question his plea to support his latest effort, The Buffet.
I am not that concerned with R. Kelly’s reaction. He has dipped and dogged these type of questions before. (Remember the interview he had with Ed Gordon, a BLACK man.) But it’s some of the public responses to this interview by his fans that disturbs me. Just like the grandmother in Sista Souljah’s Midnight, people are spending more time defending the sexual abuser, R. Kelly, than they are the sexually abused. AND IT’S DISTURBING!
This is not an attack on R. Kelly. He obviously needs help. He too was a victim of sexual abuse. He himself may have been told to ignore it or that boys are suppose to like the sexual advances of older women. However, it’s sickening to hear his fans, especially black women, defend him. You’ll hear sick comparisons to Woody Allen. To which I respond, name a Woody Allen movie? Besides, both men are free and still have large monetary access despite their sexual allegations. You’ll hear others say, “Why bring up the past? He was acquitted.” To which I respond, has the justice system always got it right? Have you paid attention to his lyrics (“Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number”) and self-proclamations (The Pied Piper of R&B)? All this proves that R. Kelly has some sexually deviant behavior. If that’s not enough, here’s more concrete evidence.
Victims of sexual assault are barely defended or protected by those who obviously should protect them. From Bill Cosby to Eddie Long to R. Kelly, people quickly defend those accused of committing sexual abuse before defending and protecting the sexually abused. Which begs the question, how often are sexual predators defended at the expense of the victim in every day life?
P.S. R. Kelly is not Nelson Mandela!
Huey Freeman said a lot about R. Kelly here. It's more than music. pic.twitter.com/TysfVsWmGM
— KD the Great™ (@_iSPEAKtheTRUTH) December 21, 2015