Why Is R. Kelly facing the Law?
Start writing a post
Arts Entertainment

Why We Hate R. Kelly But Not Chris Brown

The problematic way we view celebrities and their crimes.

Why We Hate R. Kelly But Not Chris Brown

R. Kelly

June 14, 2008: an article in the New York Times was published, R. Kelly Is Acquitted in Child Pornography Case. The starting paragraph is powerful, "It took more than six years for prosecutors to get the R&B star R. Kelly into court on charges of child pornography. It only took a few hours for a jury to declare him not guilty on all 14 counts." The evidence against him was almost insurmountable, with over 14 witnesses being able to identify the girl in the video and R. Kelly. However, all but one could not identify them together. Kelly's defense team called the woman a liar and an extortionist and compared her to "literally Satan"- saying that because she had stolen his watch she was clearly trying to pursue his money.

Although she is not entirely blameless, as theft is a crime, by dismissing the overwhelming evidence that this girl had been groomed by R. Kelly since she was 12, and the video evidence that their relationship was sexual in nature by the time she was 17, R. Kelly was given the O.J Simpson treatment: give him the benefit of the doubt because of who he is.

In the late 1990s and mid-2000s, during Kelly's peak in his career, multiple other allegations would surface with the most famous being his marriage to the then 15-year-old singer Aaliyah. Although we will never know if the marriage and relationship were consensual, and if he truly did not know about her age because "she had lied to him about being older", what we do know is that many industry professionals and former flings have talked about his interest in under-aged girls.

Fast forward 10 years, and we see R. Kelly struggling to maintain relevancy. His shield from the allegations and abuse was weakened by time, and finally, it is the right time to hear about his crimes.

1. Crisis and PR Experts Are In Agreement About R. Kelly's Future (Vulture)

2. R. Kelly scandal: A timeline (CNN)

3. R.Kelly denies sexual assault allegations while daughter breaks her silence and calls him a 'monster' (Independent)

Chris Brown

"Is Chris Brown Single Again?", "Chris Brown Takes Daughter on Movie Date", "Chris Brown Wows in New Photoshoot Pictures". In the light of the R. Kelly allegations, Chris Brown has been cruising through the underbelly of the news. The singer who is no stranger to scandals, especially those regarding assault against women, has seemingly taken the decision to lay low, and when you search his name on the news, you'll get mainly fluff pieces about him and his recent activity.

We all have heard of the 2009 brutal assault against Rihanna, with the singer later recounting the incident on a CNN article, saying, "I was battered, I was bleeding, I was swollen in my face." A police report was later leaked [warning: graphic material] depicting the full account of Brown's assault on Rihanna, with descriptions from witnesses and the singer herself. It made news headlines, and he was eventually served 5 years on probation. 10 years have passed, and often times, if you were to bring up this incident, you may be faced with an angry Brown fan saying, "Oh, it was such a long time ago. He's changed," or even better yet, an attack on Rihanna with racism thrown in. If you're like me and haven't paid much attention to him, then you've probably only heard of how fans are so excited for his next album to drop.

However, what if I told you that Chris Brown hasn't stopped assaulting women since his altercation with Rihanna? An article posted by the Rolling Stones in 2016 provides a full timeline of Brown's past and recent history with assault and battery: Timeline of Chris Brown's History of Violence Towards Women. Incredibly, if you search his name with the key term 'assault' you'll see a plethora of disturbing articles that aren't reaching the front pages of the news. Why is this happening? How is it that people are on a warpath for one individual, but completely ignoring another, equally troubling figure?

The F*cking Problem

Fame comes in many different ways, whether you've inherited money from a rich family lineage and decide to make a sex tape, or reach this elusive platform through talent or luck, fame, especially celebrity fame, means money, decreased privacy, the envy, and attention of the people, and the shield from accusations by avid fans. Fame is what helped the court decision for the O.J. Simpson case to turn a blind eye, fame is what lets celebrities escape time and time again from DUIs, drug busts, and other despicable behavior that a regular person would be charged 10x over for. I realize I sound bitter, and it's honestly not the celebrity's fault either- what would you do if you essentially had the power of invincibility in the eye of the law?

It is us, the consumer's fault, in the end. For making these people famous and for continuing to support them blindly and stupidly through all of their different scandals and racy headlines. But, assault, you say, is vastly different than getting a slap on the wrist for doing coke in a public place. Not to avid fans, it isn't. Even now, decades after R. Kelly was relevant, and after his own daughter spoke out against him, it is still questionable if he will ever face the consequences for his actions. The twitter page, "R. Kelly Fans" still has over 11 thousand followers and averages from 100-1000 likes and retweets on posts. Just like when the scandals first started in the '90s, these are packs of women who still continue to support him and "believe him" despite the heaping mountains of evidence piled up against him.

So, imagine, Chris Brown. Young, attractive, and still in the prime of his career. Untouchable. After all, what's a little assault when his music is good?

It's especially sad when you hear someone who is an avid feminist and survivor of assault themselves, proclaim that their favorite song was from the latest Chris Brown discography.

I'm not saying I'm perfect, at all. We don't truly know (unless you're like really good friends with them or something) who the singers, rappers, and celebrities we look up to, are. It's possible that someone who is seemingly completely innocent could harbor murder in their past, but I believe that when there is evidence available, and there is a call for legal and lawful action, we have a commitment as consumers to keep those things in mind when we add our support for someone.

If anyone in your life starts spouting racist diatribes, or assaults you or someone close to you or actively engages in underaged sex, chances are you'd do your best to separate from them- for your own good, or the good of someone else around you. Why should it be any different if they happen to be famous?

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

The Boyfriends Of The 2000s

Thank you, J14, for the Posters

J14 magazine

Every girl remembers her first crush. Even if your first crush was the boy in your kindergarten class that ate crayons, your first true love will always be the one that holds the key to your heart. Growing up in the 2000s, everyone knew who your dream guy was. Your family probably still give you grief and your best friends probably still reminisce, so it is impossible to forget your first celebrity crush. You bought a Tiger Beat magazine every chance you could just to read up about what your favorite celebrity was doing. Your room was fully decorated with posters of them, and it wasn't unusual to have fights with your best friends over who was going to marry him. If you were a 90's baby, lucky you because the 2000s were full of boys that were easy to love. I hope you enjoy a walk down memory lane and quickly realize that Bieber was definitely not the first guy with that hair cut. Here are 15 90's baby's first boyfriends.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

20 Things I Learned By The Start of My 20s

No one expects you to have your life together by the time you're 20, because honestly, they didn't either.

Allyson Foutty

We are all often faced with many life challenges throughout the time leading up to our 20s. Before this time, and throughout it, we often look back at the things we've learned and how they've influenced who we are as people today. Some of my biggest influences were some of the challenges I've faced, but they've taught me 20 important things by the start of my 20s.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Boyfriend Recipe

The ingredients to build a relationship are a little more complicated than just a bouquet of flowers and a box of candy.


Relationships. Long distance or not, significant others are much more than just that. I would be lying if I said I did not love the sweet gestures that only a boyfriend can give. The flowers, funny phone calls, hand holding, breakfast dates, and tight hugs are special but my relationship and many others out there exist on much more than just these little gestures. It is a tricky concoction that consists of one part boyfriend and two parts best friend and would not work without one part or the other. While having a relationship may not be quite as easy as baking a batch of cookies, it has its own recipe (with a few variations for flavor) to follow for a good match.

Keep Reading... Show less
google images

Fashion just keeps growing and changing and old trends are made new! Now, I'm no beauty guru, just a beauty guru wannabe, but personally I have compiled some stylish wardrobe must haves! These can be cute assets to go back to school or just to catch up on some of the latest trends...

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

There's More To A Relationship Than Netflix

Summertime is only 93 days of the year, Find something to do!

Tallie Ammar

Summertime is ideal for more than just hanging out and binging your favorite TV series with your friends. Although summer does bring rain and thunderstorms which is perfect for those binging days, take advantage of those nice and sunny days. There is so many opportunities to get out of the house and enjoy the season before the snow starts to come back. Here are 25 interesting dates that are doable almost anywhere for any age.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments