Monday, December 03, 2007

The R. Kelly Trial (Boondocks)

6 Comments:

Blogger Common said...

R. Kelly doesn't deserve our time
By Wendi C. Thomas (Contact)
Sunday, December 2, 2007

About 100 children in America are abused every hour.

So in the time it takes the perverted Pied Piper of R&B to seduce crowds at FedEx Forum next Sunday, a few hundred more kids will be taken advantage of by adults.

Surely the hundreds of people who have tickets to R.Kelly's concert are repulsed by child sexual abuse, but their presence at the show suggests otherwise.

Five years and many chart-topping albums ago, Robert Kelly was charged with 21 counts of child pornography. The prosecution's evidence is a videotape that appears to show Kells having sex with, and urinating on, a 13-year-old girl. His trial has been delayed repeatedly, and as of now, no date has been set.

Kelly, now 40, settled two cases brought by women who say they were underage when R. Kelly was doing much more than "Feelin' on Yo' Booty," as one of his hits goes.

In 2002, he dodged a bullet when a judge ruled that digital photos that purportedly showed him having sex with an underage girl were illegally seized from his Florida house.

In 1995, he married the late songstress Aaliyah when she was just 15. Another woman has accused him of impregnating her when she was underage and forcing her to have an abortion.

To say that smoke surrounds R. Kelly, whose songs range from ironically uplifting to sexually graphic, would be to suggest that fat meat is greasy. And to his diehard fans, the ones who manage to dismiss all his sexual shenanigans, I just want to know -- what exactly would Kelly have to do for you to shun him? Would he have to urinate on your daughter? In front of you?

Pardon me for going here, but I must: If there was a videotape of a white man -- pick any white man -- that appeared to show him relieving himself on 13-year-old black girl, what sort of career might he enjoy?

Last year, "Seinfeld" star Michael Richards, who is white, erupted with all manner of racial obscenities during a comedy routine gone very bad. He made the contrite apology rounds, but you haven't heard much from him since, have you?

Even shock jock Don Imus, another white man, had to endure a cooling-off period after his unwarranted attack against the Rutgers women's basketball team.

But R. Kelly? The Teflon brother? He goes on tour.

We black folks are a forgiving people. Everyone deserves the benefit of the doubt, you're presumed innocent until proven guilty and all that.

But at this point, I would urge just a bit of caution. Couldn't we say this to ourselves: Until I can figure out whether he's truly a pervert or not, just to be on the safe side, and just to be consistent with my anti-abuse attitudes, I'm going to take a Kelly break?

We should continue to pray for Kelly, as he begged in a recent televised appearance at a gospel concert, as it's clear he has issues.

But until the charges are resolved, just don't give Kelly any money. Don't buy his albums, don't pay to see his concerts, don't join his fan club. Just let him be until he's cleared his name, if he can do so.

And do so because you take the sexual abuse of girls seriously.

Men who show a pattern of being attracted to and sexually involved with young girls are not heroes, no matter how much Kelly believes he can fly. Predators should be social pariahs.

We need to love our young girls enough to show them that people who abuse them will suffer our wrath.

So instead of swaying to Kells' hit, "Step In The Name Of Love," our instinct should be to step away from Kelly and step toward our children, in defense of their right to grow up unmolested by anyone, no matter how musically talented he may be

11:19 PM  
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