R. Kelly’s Coming Back (…And We Can’t Let This Happen) » VSB

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R. Kelly’s Coming Back (…And We Can’t Let This Happen)


Full disclosure: It has never been hard for me.

Often, when people write and/or talk about why they don’t/can’t support R. Kelly anymore, it’s prefaced with a sentence or a paragraph or an entire constitution about their ambivalence. Basically, despite their knowledge of his sordid (and criminal) sexual history, it’s difficult for them to completely stop listening to him because they enjoyed (or still currently enjoy) the R-uh’s music so much.

They eventually do it. But, as Akiba Soloman acknowledged in her piece at Colorlines, it can be a struggle.

For me, though, there has been no struggle. Not because I’m any more moral than any old R. Kelly fans. But because I’ve never been a fan.

I recognize his place in R&B, his importance, and even his musical genius. And I’ve enjoyed some of his songs. But he’s never been an artist that was necessary to me. At least to my enjoyment of music. I grew up such a hip-hop head that the only contemporary R&B that resonated with me was somewhat rap-ish. If you asked a 20 year old me to name his favorite slow jams, instead of “Your Body’s Callin” or “Till The Cops Come Knockin” I would have named “You Got Me” or “Sweet Love.” (Or maybe “Renee” if I was in a bad mood.)

So, after watching the tape—which, all things considered, is up there with The Passion of the Christ and “2 Girls, 1 Cup” on the list of “Things You Only Watch One Time“—and combining that visual confirmation of his thing for underage girls with the already prevalent rumors of his thing for underage girls and his “marriage” to Aaliyah, deciding not to fuck with R. Kelly anymore was an easy decision to make. It was like me deciding not to eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches anymore. Sure, I’ve eaten them before. And sure, they can taste good. But, if someone told me peanut butter and jelly sandwiches caused herpes or mouth gout or something, I’d have no problem completely removing them from my life.

Anyway, I’m bringing this all up because, although he’s been off-the-radar for some time, R. Kelly seems poised to return to pop culture relevancy as a Mike Tyson-esque, “he’s so weird and absurd that he’s…cool” type of character. Two weeks ago, he performed with Lady Gaga at the AMA’s. In the last week, I’ve read two separate fawning reviews of his new album, Black Panties. One surfaced on Jezebel, made no mention of his past, and was roundly criticized in their comments. (The Colorlines’ piece reference earlier was also a response to the Jezebel piece.)

Another came from one of my favorite writers, Grantland’s Wesley Morris. Like most of Morris’s work, the review was an enjoyable read. And, to his credit, he did mention Kelly’s history. But while I understand a critic’s need to recognize a work on its artistic merit instead of the artist’s actions, when it comes to R. Kelly, it just doesn’t feel…right.

With other artists guilty of criminal behavior, there can be a certain cognitive dissonance that can happen when the art and the unseemly acts by the artist have no connection. R. Kelly’s music doesn’t allow for that. His art and his actions are irrevocably linked. They can not be unlinked. It’s like shoes and soles. Or Knick fans and disappointment. He makes crazy, nasty, deviant sex music because he’s a crazy, nasty sex deviant. These are not two separate parts of him. Songs like “Marry The Pussy” and “Age Aint Nothing But a Number”—which he wrote and produced—and thoughts like “Hmm. I’m bored. Maybe I’ll go to an 8th grade step practice today and find a new 13 year old to drink my pee.” come from the exact same place. You just can’t listen to him croon about pussy and panties and not wonder if a 14 year old’s vagina was his muse.

Or maybe you can. Maybe he’s been culturally irrelevant for so long that those connections are no longer natural for some people. I suspect this is what’s happening now. Enough time has passed since the last serious allegations against him, so now it’s safe and ironic and even kind of subversively cool to publicly recognize and praise his genius.

You know, I do wonder if I’d feel differently about all of this if I loved his music in the first place. Would I be more ambivalent? Would I’d be less prone to connect his acts with his art? I honestly don’t know how I’d answer any of these questions. I do know one thing, though. I’m glad I don’t have to.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

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Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for GQ.com And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com. Or don't. Whatever.

  • Cheekie Mae

    “Full disclosure: It has never been hard for me.”

    This is prolly the saddest TWSS ever…

    • The Champ

      LOL, I was wondering who’d be the first to point that out. Good job.

      • Cheekie Mae

        LOL knowing me…

    • Sahel

      Honesty is the best policy

    • shatani

      dammit! we can’t “like” posts?? this was amazing.

    • Asiyah

      yeah. he should have used another adjective lol

  • iamnotakata

    Yeah R.Kelly is a definite creep…and a f boy. I have liked a few of his songs in the past, but he really could have stayed on hiatus and I literally would have not even noticed. I have barely notice his so called come back now…So I kind of feel the same way you do about him shrugs…

    • He never went anywhere just making songs to get back on 106 #hideyokids

  • Sahel

    Am still not happy that he got to Alliyah. Completely ruined my fantasy

    • But you’ll give Damon Dash a pass huh? LMAO!!!!

      • Sahel

        I didnt even know that he plumbed those depths. That’s it am replacing Alliyah in my pantheon of what if i

        • You should aim a little higher…you know, like, Alicia Keys?

          • Sahel

            My girl Val claimed that constituency.

      • Funny how everyone assumed that was all Jay n dame swooped in

        • He was with her while she was underage too- and if you watched the Behind The Music episode on Aaliyah, Damon didn’t exactly try to hide it. I’m wondering if Roc-A-Fella had a thing for young girls, because Jay was with Rosario Dawson around the same time- and she wasn’t exactly mature either.

          • Foxy tried to hip us

          • Asiyah

            the majority of them are into underage girls and boys.

  • skinnynow

    I’m one of the people who has to preface my appreciation for R. with a caveat: I’m a big fan of everything pre-tape. But I can’t support him now. I haven’t bought, downloaded or streamed anything of his in years. But if a song of his is playing somewhere, I will find myself humming along. There are some people who’s actions I can separate from their art, but he isn’t one of them.

    • Sahel

      Your name interests me. Why are you skinny now,what happened before

      • Hush Sahel!

      • iamnotakata

        Childish lol

      • skinnynow

        It’s from my blog skinnynowwhat.com. It’s about what happens after you lose the weight.

        • in my experience gfs suddenly get insecure n white women start heybooing

          • skinnynow

            That’s interesting. I’m still trying to think about it from a man’s perspective.

  • Vanity in Peril

    He makes my stranger danger radar go off. I think he’s gross.

    • MsSvelteNY

      HA! I always felt that way about him. Before the accusation even started. He always reminded me of that creepy uncle.

      • Sahel

        And for gender parity,let me add. That creepy Aunt

        • Creepy aunts fly under the radar, that “little boyfriend” sh t only cute for so long…

          • keisha brown

            that’s why it disturbs when people sexualize little babies.
            when people call the offspring future husband – i know they don’t actually mean harm.. but i dont like it. he’s NOT EVEN TWO!!! let him be a baby!!
            ok bai.

            • Ive had said creepy aunts step to me as an adult…who knows how long they were perving…gotta let them know early u’ll cut a b tch

              • LMNOP


      • afronica

        Yeah. He was always too juicy of lip. And the cornrows…smh.

  • Msdebbs

    I used to be a R. Kelly fan because his music was decent and entertaining pre TP2. I’m not a fan anymore because his music really sucks. I love RNB but when you start putting “in my white tee” beats in what’s supposed to be RNB song I lose all interest.

    • Not helping his case is that he’s a nearly 50 year old man that’s has made it a point to appeal to a slightly younger demographic. This something he has been doing for fifteen years of his career.

    • thats what irks me now, i wish artists stop crooning on rap beats or Edm tracks…makes me wanna throw instruments at them

    • keith cooper

      tp2 did suck. Oh also the best of both worlds was a piece of shit too. especially part 2. I see Jay z was able to escape that tradegy

  • h.h.h.

    I think r Kelly, music wise is probably the best r&b artist since Luther vandross died…I’d venture to say since Marvin Gaye died (babyface is 2nd).

    I think his latest album is something trey songz would make..and he really should have stuck to the old school sound.

    I think there was enough evidence to convict and he should have been jailed…and his illness will follow him around until he admits to his transgressions and works on bettering himself.

    I think that listening to another pedofile (Michael Jackson), drug abuser/potential batterer(Eminem) a couple of weedheads (nas and redman) and a small time drug dealer (Shawn carter), having them as favorite artists, and not taking on their habits..has allowed me to develop the cognitive dissonance needed to listen to r Kelly. Or maybe its a mutant ability I’ve always had.

    But in short. I understand the revulsion and I don’t belittle it…I listen to my Tp2.com silently.

    • Sahel

      So in conclusion,all your favourite artists have a criminal element in them. This PSA has been brought to you by triple H

      • esa

        “The criminal, like the artist, is a social explorer.” ~Marshall McLuhan

        • “The future masters of technology will have to be lighthearted and intelligent.

          The machine easily masters the grim and the dumb.”

          • esa

            “I don’t necessarily agree with everything that I say.”

            i could hang with McLuhan all day ~*~

            • Well, the quote I put up, I learned during my hacker days. It’s very popular in those circles. Also, I wrote for a paper named after the Marshall McLuhan quote “The Medium is the Message”, and I have visual evidence of me writing for them. LOL

        • SuperStrings

          Both being social explorers doesn’t necessarily put them on the same level or even in the same realm. What exactly are they exploring?

          • The boundaries of what people are willing to accept as proper social behavior. Otherwise, there would be no crime, as the boundaries of society would control crime from ever happening.

            • SuperStrings

              I’m not convinced that all artists and criminals explore the boundaries. Seems as though many artists and criminals operate pretty comfortably within the boundaries. What boundary is Waka Flaka Flame exploring as an artist? A person lying to get food stamps is pushing what envelope?

              • esa

                ~ I’m not convinced that all artists and criminals explore the boundaries.

                i would agree that this is not all inclusive and that we need to look at individuals and evaluate them on a case by case basis. but as a general rule of thumb, my experience with artists and criminals leads me to believe there is some truth to McLuhan’s words ..

          • esa

            i do not believe that McLuhan is saying they are one and the same. i believe he is asking us to consider that the artist and the criminal are able, by their nature, to transgress the boundaries proscribed by the status quo that orders groupthink by which most folks abide.

            what are they exploring ? that is a personal question. we would need to deal with this on an individual level. is there someone in particular you would like to discuss ?

            • SuperStrings

              I think McLuhan’s quote leaves itself open for interpretation. To say otherwise would be to put boundaries on it, which would seem to contradict the nature of the quote. Of course, I’m taking the quote at face value since I don’t know the context in which it was written or said. Also, I think that the ability to transcend boundaries is inherent in all manner of people who may not be criminals or artists. Do you believe that being a criminal is in a person’s “nature”? I think “criminal” is merely symptomatic of other natural tendencies. A person may be rebellious by nature, and that quality may manifest itself as behaviors that are considered criminal, however that is defined at the time. A person may be selfish by nature, resulting in them committing offenses that ignore the well-being and safety of others. While it may be the case, I don’t believe that a criminal (or an artist) is necessarily exploring anything. Exploring implies a sense of consciousness and purpose. Transcending boundaries is not the same as exploring. Do you believe that any human is exempt from groupthink?

              • esa

                ~ I think McLuhan’s quote leaves itself open for interpretation. To say otherwise would be to put boundaries on it, which would seem to contradict the nature of the quote.

                touche !

                ~ Do you believe that being a criminal is in a person’s “nature”?

                criminal, being a construct of society, is a challenging word. that said, yes i believe that being a sociopath or a psychopath is biologically determined, and also, not “curable.” but there are countless other “crimes” that are committed by neither type, and are often a matter of a number of pathologies that come into play, based on a number of circumstances.

                Transcending boundaries is not the same as exploring.

                Transgressing, not transcending. i do believe, knowing both artists and criminals, that they both are open to exploration, but i prefer to deal with people as individuals.

                ~ Do you believe that any human is exempt from groupthink?

                to being conditioned, no. to overcoming conditioning, YES ~*~

                • SuperStrings

                  I think we may be saying the same thing about criminality…that there are genuinely natural qualities that may lend themselves to the social construct of criminality. But criminality itself is not inherent from birth. Is socio-pathology really biologically determined? If you put a sociopath in an environment where their pathology is accepted by the society, then are they still a sociopath? I also believe that people can overcome groupthink conditioning, but those people often gravitate toward others who have done so, creating an environment of groupthink for those who have overcome groupthink. Did that make sense? lol

                  • esa

                    i’m with you on all things except the part about sociopaths. these people are predators and i believe that they are determined at birth; for whatever reason Nature has decided it necessary to ensure that we are the ones who finish ourselves off. Wall Street is filled with them, as are the governments, police forces, correctional institutions, hospitals, etc etc.

                    however “accepted” they may be, they still hide their criminality in order to avoid having to take responsibility in any form. i also believe this is part of their nature. however, Nature is amoral, but we are not. so we are in a position of having to really examine the nature of sociopathy in order to protect ourselves from folks like rapists, child molesters, human traffikers, etc etc.

        • afronica

          *adds McLuhan to reading shortlist* Thank you (as usual), esa.

      • h.h.h.

        So in conclusion,all your favourite artists have a criminal element in them.

        some are, some aren’t, Joe and Tamia (R Kelly produced a song on “More”) are my favourites as well, pretty sure they’re (relative) goody-two-shoes

    • “I think r Kelly, music wise is probably the best r&b artist since Luther vandross died…I’d venture to say since Marvin Gaye died (babyface is 2nd).”

      *cues “I Can’t Go For That” by Hall & Oates*

      • G-Lo

        I was waiting for the punchline after that statement, but it never came.

        I’m with you, Hall and Oates. I can’t go for that either…

    • I liked the old scool route he was taking, wasn’t for me but it was an album a 40+ man would make

    • Sigma_Since 93

      “he really should have stuck to the old school sound.”

      Too many people hating on Neo Soul artists to make any long money.

      • h.h.h.

        but what’s neo soul now? are the artists that we consider ‘neo soul’ that popular?

        i feel like a lot of the (male) r&b artists are either trying to rap or get in on the EDM movement, so if Kellz had stayed with the Love Letter/Write Me Back sound, he’d definitely have an audience for it

  • ItsMrLittle

    I find it interesting that everyone’s calling it a comeback when before this, he’d released two albums since 2010. I guess since those were more “soul” and for the grown folks it’s not as attention-worthy. For better or worse, the masses want the raunchy “R”…despite that raunchiness likely being inspired by a desire for 8th grade girls. *That sounded even sicker while typing it* I will say that I don’t really mess with his music anymore. As much as I’d like to say it’s entirely because of his proclivities for underage girls, I suspect it has just as much to do with the fact that I haven’t felt his music like THAT since Chocolate Factory in 2003.

    I do agree that it’s definitely fascinating to see what ppl allow through cognitive dissonance. We all know that many of our musical giants were repeated domestic abusers, alleged pedophiles, etc but we’ll happily jam to some of their tunes without pause.

    • “We all know that many of our musical giants were repeated domestic abusers, alleged pedophiles, etc but we’ll happily jam to some of their tunes without pause.”

      Or they were just downright lowdown- see: The Womack Brothers (Cecil AND Bobby).

      • the original mr steal yo girl Bobby womack

        • Dude was bold with it too, LOL! He married Sam Cooke’s widow shortly after his death (For protection purposes…yeah right, LMAO!!!!), and then turned around and wore Sam’s clothes to the wedding!!!!

          His brother isn’t any better, either. He married Sam Cooke’s daughter and they became a group. Think about that the next time you play Womack & Womack’s “Baby I’m Scared Of You”, LMAO!!!

          • Michelle

            (stares down at iPod as “Baby, I’m Scared of You” plays… grimaces)

            • Or…”I Wish He Didn’t Trust Me So Much”, since we’re gonna go there, LOL!
              To be fair, he didn’t write that song, but he still told on himself…

          • StillSuga

            “Think about that the next time you play Womack & Womack’s “Baby I’m Scared Of You”, LMAO!!!”

            Now what now?? Learn something new every day…

            • Straight from the world of Wikipedia!

              In the 1960s, Cecil Womack worked primarily as a songwriter and producer. He first met Linda, who is Sam Cooke’s daughter, born in 1953, when he was thirteen and she was eight.[4] Although Linda and Cecil were close, particularly after her father’s death in 1964, he married singer Mary Wells in the 1967 and wrote material for her, including the hit “The Doctor”, released on Jubilee Records. They had three children, and he managed her career until their break-up in 1977.[4] Linda Cooke also worked as a songwriter, co-writing Bobby Womack’s “Woman’s Gotta Have It.”[5] Bobby Womack was her stepfather, having married Sam Cooke’s widow, Barbara. Cecil Womack and Mary Wells divorced in 1977, and he and Linda married shortly afterwards.[6]

              Yeah, that family reunion had to be…interesting… *Muttley snicker*

          • Vanity in Peril

            Da fuh?

          • Epsilonicus

            This sounds all kinds of messy

            • It was. That was the incident that got Bobby and Cecil blacklisted and/or run out of the music industry for a good number of years.

          • Amber

            Bobby got beat up by Sam’s brothers for that too.They would have killed him if the wife didn’t intervene.

          • Grade A dirty macking. Bobby Wo(dirty)mack

    • Word. People are acting way brand new about this ish. Also, considering we know that 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 6 boys go through what those girls went through what happened on that tape, we know 2 things. One, a lot of people can relate to what happened and don’t actively think of it as a bad part of their lives. Also, it’s safe to say that R. Kelly and Jerry Sandusky haven’t molested every kid in America over the past 25 years. Birds of a feather flock together perhaps…

      • Michelle

        IMO, I think that if R. Kelly was doing the same sh*t to 14 year-old BOYS instead of girls, his career would’ve died Scorpion-Mortal Kombat-style.

        • Epsilonicus

          Because then he would have been accused of being gay and thats a big no-no for Black folks.

          • afronica

            Disagree. See Michael Jackson.

            • Epsilonicus

              The issue with MJ is the proof was not as clear as R Kelly. There were no tapes that flat out shows MJ with kids. Plus once it came out later that the parents were shady, it made MJ situation change a bit.

              • afronica

                Others on here have compared the MJ and OJ situations and I agree. Yeah, he got off (or was never tried for those specific charges). But c’mon, son. Really? If so, just put those blinders shades back on.

                • Epsilonicus

                  No blinders. I am not a huge MJ fan since I have only grown up knowing MJ as a weirdo. But the cases are very much different. I would think OJ and R Kelly is a more apt comparison

        • With all the same details, I’m not too sure sadly. Homophobia ain’t a game, and I’m afraid of the slurs that would have been hurled their ways and the potential $exual assaults they’d get on the street.

    • I think the difference in people’s minds regarding R Kelly is that people either consider it not that serious or the fact that he revels in it so (remember for a good minute after the piss tape with the mask he starter wearing the mask ALL THE TIME). That’s not to say he’s a worse man than other singers who are/have been pedophiles it’s just that he represents something greater and people make so many excuses loudly and proudly for R Kelly.

      • that zorro phase was 3rd world trolling…it’d be like if chris brown tatted rihannas face…oh wait .

        • I never saw the tape, so I had no idea that’s where that awful thing came from. He’s been off for a while now, really.

      • And then he kept referring to himself as The Pied Piper. Now, if you know the fairy tale and his sordid history with prepubescent girls, that probably wasn’t a good idea on his behalf, LOL!

        • R. Kelly’s whole discography tells on himself. Remember when he put the phrase “grown and sexy” into the lexicon after the tape broke? He gives zero f*cks about what people think…and his BDS checks allow him to do so. :)

          • When you write songs called “It Seems Like You’re Ready” and “Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number”, you are setting yourself up for criticism. That is all…

            • And yet nobody calls out Keith Sweat for his magnum opus of perv:

              “You may be young/ but you’re ready/ ready to learn
              You’re not a little girl/ you’re a woman/ take my hand”

              -_- that’s as bad as anything Kelz ever made.

              • The reason being was Keith Sweat wasn’t going offstage to get the teenage girls. He was too busy hitting off their moms, LMAO!!!

                • Word! Tell me that someone underaged got molested by Keith Sweat, and I am immediately tracking down their mother and throwing her in jail for conspiracy, no other evidence needed. I could see some warped mama throwing their little girl at Keith Sweat as a gift to appease him. LOL

                • LMNOP

                  Those lyrics are concerning though. If someone else writes/ helps write those it might be worth keeping an eye on them.

              • WIP

                lol, yes its so bad :)

        • SuperStrings

          Just noticed this comment after I posted mine. lol

        • Yoles

          lets be clear… he has NEVER been associated with Prepubescent girls… i feel that people calling him a pedophile is a disservice to true victims of that crime…

          Pedophilia is a psychiatric disorder in persons 16 years of age or older typically characterized by a primary or exclusive chexual interest toward prepubescent children generally age 11 years or younger, though specific diagnostic criteria for the disorder extends the cut-off point for prepubescence to age 13.

          Hebephilia is one of several types of chronophilia (sexual preference for a specific physiological appearance related to age), a primary or exclusive chexual interest in pubescent individuals

          On average, girls begin the process of puberty at age 10 or 11; boys at age 11 or 12,[8] and it is argued that separating chexual attraction to prepubescent children (pedophilia) from early-to-mid pubescent children (hebephilia) is clinically relevant.

          all that to say… i do not advocate for the recording of coitus acts nor do i think he was correct in his actions but as someone that has realized that those above mentioned categories are not the same and i also realize that just 75 years ago was very common, i don’t have room in my arsenal for being mad at a man that wants to screw 14 yr old girls just like most of the men on the planet… more countries and more people recognize 14 yr old girls as chexually viable partners than not, now whether so or so not is another issue that we need to take up with the entire globe not just R & B music…

          i do not like his new music, i still listen to the old…

          i also find it funny that marvin gaye is given a pass on teen fvcking…

          • First, Michelle used the term hebephile correctly. Two, unless you want to give 14 year olds the right to contract, vote, drink and have driver’s licenses, you can’t co-sign any adult humping a 14 year old period. Yes, I understand any age of consent is somewhat arbitrary, but at least it is consistent and allows for the vast majority of people above that age to have reasonably reached maturity.

            • Yoles

              since 17 is legal in ny but they can’t sign a contract, join the military, vote or drink should that change things… when has coitus ever correlated to the above mentioned things half of which are 100 yrs old or less…

              all i am saying is so up in arms over a biologically viable human female… psychologists Robert Prentky and Howard Barbaree pointed out that examples of highly sexualized young girls appear frequently in advertising, fashion shows, television programs, and films, making it questionable whether sexual attraction to pubescents is abnormal… that is all i am saying… i have a lot of hot button issues and banners to wave, letters to write to law makers etc this such happens to not be one of my issues…

              • *sips tea*

              • LMNOP

                The important point about children here (which in my view, and from a legal perspective young teens still are) is not whether it is “abnormal” to have a chexual attraction to them, but that it is WRONG morally, ethically, and legally to act on that attraction, and can be very damaging to children at that developmental stage to be chexually exploited/ abused/ taken advantage of by grown men (or women).

                • Exactly. Male or female, children need legal protections, and they aren’t in a position to be able to either evaluate or reasonably reject approaches from adults.

                • Yoles

                  i do not disagree LMNOP… pls don’t think that… I’m just not riled up enough to boycott his music purposely, i don’t like his new music but if i did, i just would… there are many artists that have done so many things to others that are wrong morally, ethically and legally including raping, killing, other criminal activity etc… maybe I’m just worn out…womp

          • That’s a good point about Marvin Gaye being given a pass…

      • SuperStrings

        And one of his songs at that time even referred to himself as the Pied Piper. In the folk story the Pied Piper used music to get CHILDREN to follow him.

        • Asiyah

          didn’t know that. the more you learn!

  • TheOtherJerome

    I’m a bit conflicted on the R. I love his music because i have some great memories as a youngin with his music in the background. ……
    …He’s also a pet-her-@ss. Sad.
    However, his music has never been about how i felt about HIM. You know. When i listen to R Kelly, and it’s been a minute, i don’t really think about him, so much as i’m just enjoying the song. One of my favorite songs of his is the “Gothem City” Remix. Great song. When it pops up in the rotation though i’m not thinking about him so much as i’m thinking about the ish i used to do when this song was hot.

    Also, it seems people pick and choose who they are offended by.

    Seriously….. and i mean no disrespect…… but it’s highly likely that Michael Jackson had a similar problem. But let “Don’t Stop” or “P.Y.T” come on during a wedding reception and everyone who’s hating on R Kelly in this thread would be right on the dance floor…… little white boy’s be d@mned.

    Lastly on a slightly similar note, i had a “problem/ words” with a well known comedian before. I still think dude is funny, even though i think he’s an @sshole. I wouldn’t pay to see him, but i wouldn’t change the channel if his stand up was on either. Not sure what that means, or if it’s totally appropriate for this conversation.

    • “Also, it seems people pick and choose who they are offended by.”

      That’s how it usually works in the world of R&B. Their level of offense is related to how much they don’t listen to an artist even if the artist they do like is doing the exact same thing.

    • Sigma_Since 93

      “But let “Don’t Stop” or “P.Y.T” come on during a wedding reception and
      everyone who’s hating on R Kelly in this thread would be right on the
      dance floor…… little white boy’s be d@mned.”

      This issue plays out with misogyny in rap lyrics. For the life of me I can’t see how women complain about being called Santa’s little helper on one hand and be droppin’ it like it hot sweating out that weave on the other hand.

    • SuperStrings

      I think there’s a (subtle or not so subtle) difference between Mike and R. Mike’s supposed offenses are still a question mark for most because none of those things ever went to trial. It doesn’t mean he was innocent, but it leaves enough room for doubt for people to write them off as parents of children just wanting money. R., on the other hand, has several video tapes of him with underage age girls, including the one that probably everyone in the country has seen. There is no question mark, except for people who just refuse to believe anything bad about R. Kelly.

    • Epsilonicus

      Which comedian?

  • Aprille1

    Let me just say, I never comment – but I have too with this!!!!!!!!!! I WAS a fan, and because of everything you mentioned above is exactly why I do not support R Kelly since all of that came out. Not his music, videos…nothing. Yes, he is musically genius – like most sick ass individuals he has talent. I just can’t support a man who’d have sex with my daughter, my niece…their friends etc. The black community is too forgiving to the wrong ish. Also speaking as a survivor of this exact type of “accused” pedophilia, I can’t. God, thank you for writing this!

    • ” Not his music, videos…nothing. Yes, he is musically genius – like most sick a$$ individuals he has talent.”

      Yeah, I can’t go along with this right here. I have seen most of R. Kelly’s fans call him a musical genius, but that term doesn’t resonate with me in reference to his music. Singing and writing about s*x all the time does not equal genius.

      That term is used to describe musically forward thinking, pushing creative boundaries and not being confined to genre restrictions. In other words, Prince is a musical genius. Miles Davis is a musical genius. R. Kelly is not a musical genius. Prolific? Yes. Musical genius? Not so much…

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