Disclaimer: There’s a certain level of respect needed when a discussion of this nature is taking place. There’s a certain level of maturity needed as well. In any case where you are involved in a conversation like such, keep in mind that the survivor (I don’t like the word victim) could be your sister, brother, mother, or anyone in your circle. Even YOU.
R.Kelly has been in the music industry for a long time. I vividly remember my mom would play “Step In The Name of Love” at parties and gatherings we would have. Every adult present would immediately get excited. I remember the times he would come on in the car and she would automatically turn him up. R.Kelly gave us feel good music. Feel good music last forever, which is why our generation knows of R.Kelly and his music. While listening, we do not think much of the person behind the music. The real person. How could R.Kelly turn to be this monster we know today?
Earlier this week, my mom came home and we both decided to join in on the conversation and watch “Surviving R.Kelly.” Personally, I am always hesitant to watch stuff surrounding that issue because it’s sickening to think that it goes on everyday around us and nothing is being done. Every single day in our own communities. Molestation, rape, pedophilia, human trafficking, abuse, and assault all of which take place right before us. What grinds my gears the most is that the conversations shifts into two directions usually. Either victim blaming or we don’t mention the victims at all and only focus on the prey. In this case, R.Kelly is getting all the attention he lacked growing up. Let that sink in. His streaming revenue has increased in high numbers which is very normal whenever a biopic or documentary is released. It is a really unfortunate situation, and most have responded with #MuteRKelly in effort to put a stop to all things R.Kelly. I, too, really agree for such actions to be put into place but that’s not my biggest concern. Little do we know, we have been muting bigger issues for years.
I was in complete disgust as I watched LifeTime this week, but I was not “surprised” at all. There’s been a lot of “surprised” industry people all over my timeline, and it confuses me. People who encountered with this man musically and on a personal level actually want me to believe they saw no signs? R.Kelly was a cry for help that happened. Now, everyone is responsible! R.Kelly is not a survivor because look at what he’s done to innocent people. Yes, he’s rapist and there’s no excuse for that; However, is a victim as well who needed to seek help before it became too late. At a tender age, he was assaulted by a female relative. Being an African American male comes with a lot, just as being an African American female comes with a lot. R.Kelly was expected to have tough skin. Instead of seeking help or just finding someone to talk to, he became what he knew and that’s the problem right there. With a little bit of money, he became an enabler to these females. I will never blame survivors! Never. I will say that the parents, bodyguards, assistants, teachers who saw him picking up girls, industry people who came into the studio and witnessed firsthand, and even Robert’s own family ALL need to admit to their wrongdoing. Money should never shift your common sense. Wrong is wrong. People want to act surprised when they seen all of these signs prior, but never said anything to help those little girls. He’s a pedophile and has been for years. I cannot fathom why people would let money overpower them like that. Fame and money aside, these are problems that have been muted for years. It is absolutely sickening because it is hurting people. Your people. My people. Our people.
Keeping silent or “acting like it didn’t happen” can no longer be a coping mechanism. Period.
Can we all agree that Huey been told us?!
I really pray the survivors obtain the healing they need. Real mental, spiritual, and emotional healing. The aftermath of sexual misconduct of any kind is another level of trauma. They’ll never forget what happened to them. Never. Proper healing can definitely help them move forward; However, proper healing rarely occurs because survivors have to endure the trauma alone due to the fear of being blamed and made to be looked at as a liar. Childhood trauma occurs at a very early stage in one’s life which makes it hard for them to deal with it, but what makes it even harder is when they are not allowed to speak on their pain. Imagine what it does to survivors mentally. Studies show that even at a young age, the feeling of not being able to defend yourself during a traumatic experience sone that scars the child forever. They live in fear and terror, sometimes feeling helpless and worthless (The National Child Traumatic Stress Network), 2001. Nobody deserves to a live their life scared, especially when they are at places where they should find comfort. All of this is not new. Your sister should not have to worry about running into the man who’s sexually demonized her at a FAMILY event every single year. That’s sick! Your mother, brother, cousin, YOU or anyone for that matter should not have to either. The community we dwell in will forever play a role in this if we do not speak out and most importantly open the room for THIS conversation. Speak with family members about the history of sexual assault. This is specifically for my African/African Americans because we are centuries in. Seek the needed help now. Living in fear will only continue to destroy us.
Ignorance will forever be present in this world we live in, but when it comes to sexual assault I rather not entertain ignorance. To be very honest, it’s not even worth my time. Also, let’s acknowledge that yes, black men are usually sought out to be the bad guy; However, R.Kelly is the bad guy here.
SO YALL CAN PARK THAT.
Let’s spend less time tweeting and liking post on the issue, and more time sitting with those we love to elaborate on this issue at hand. Educate your people about sexual assault and how it affects families all over this world. That can and will be step one towards community healing.