Kanye’s latest loose cannon musings began on his new Sunday Service event which livestreams uplifting takes on his anthology of hits with a choir in tow. During the event, he took a moment to mention Michael Jackson and the documentary that’ll hit Sundance on January 25. He makes no mention of R. Kelly, but his words seems to refer to the R&B singer who is at the center of Lifetime’s six-part documentary featuring interviews of his victims, staff, and parents of missing girls.
In a video released by TMZ, West says “They want art from the artist. But, anytime they do anything erratic, they just gonna pull up the full documentaries on him.”
“And then, they gonna come with the Michael documentary. We can enjoy all their music all we want,” West finishes.
Kardashian-West took to Twitter Monday morning to refute any claims that Ye is encouraging fans to listen to music made by R.Kelly, rather pushing the pretense that Ye is talking about himself.
Kardashian-West wrote, “I’m going to nip this in the bud right now. Kanye was speaking about his own experience of everyone quick to say they are cancelling him because of differences in opinion & not being perfect. The analogies were in context to his own experiences, not defending anyone else.” *Insert any of Rihanna’s side eye gifs here*
West didn’t explicitly name R. Kelly, but all signs allude to the singer. Regardless, saying “we can enjoy all their music all we want” is a statement that should not be encouraged in this context.
In the wake of the “Surviving R. Kelly” backlash, many of Kelly’s supporters, say they “are only here for the music” insinuating they can separate art from music. But, they are overlooking the fact that purchasing his music and attending his shows literally finance his disgusting lifestyle and predatory behavior. More so, according to victims and crew members, Kelly’s studio is built with a bed in the middle of the room in which to perform sexual acts as he records his music. Oh, and his lyrics are the detailed accounts of those acts he commits on underage and barely legal girls. There is no separation of art and crime here.
Devout fans, have you all forgotten that one of the victims (we know of) was reportedly 14 at the time she encountered Kelly?! He urinated on her and recorded it. What if that was your sister, niece, cousin, or daughter? Kanye, what if that was North?! Ugh, my skin is crawling.
Kelly has gotten away with increasingly grotesque act after act because time and time again we as a society turned away from those suffering black and brown girls and rather turned our ears to his next album. We need to do better because if we don’t care about OUR girls why should anyone else? We need to do right by our girls. Musicians needs to do right by our girls. Society as a whole needs to do right by our girls.
Lady Gaga and Chance The Rapper, who are both culturally sound when it comes to human rights, admitted to their oversight when it came to working with R. Kelly and are now stripping his collaborations from their works.
I understand the music this man made is tied to good times and joyous memories for fans, but it’s also oppressive, demeaning, and belittling to the victims who are forever changed from the abuse they endured at the hands of their assailant. If you don’t have a problem with that you are part of the problem. Don’t @ me.
It’s not too late to delete the Spotify playlist, throw out his CDs, and #MuteRKelly for good. If you’d like to learn more or join the movement visit muterkelly.org.
If you or someone you knows is being abused or needs someone to talk to call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), available 24/7.