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| By Wellvyl Media Editorial

Recently, music streaming giants such as Apple Music and Spotify have removed R. Kelly’s music from their featured playlist, but his music has still seen an increase in plays. This is the result of recent allegations and new lawsuits of sexual battery, knowingly spreading STDs, and sexual imprisonment according to Consequence of Sound. Two years ago in 2016, GQ Magazine’s Chris Heath wrote a story about the entertainer’s life of sexual abuse growing up, being illiterate, amongst other obstacles the Chicago native has overcome throughout this life and career. The accusations then are similar to the accusations now. Sure. But let me ask a simple question: Is that you in that video? [pause] Because of my lawyers, to this day I cannot have tthose kindsof conversations. Being advised by my lawyers in this.” I understand why you wouldn't during the trial period, but… “Because they could come back to haunt me. Things could come back and they can just restart all over again. And I have to protect myself.”


And just like clockwork, these things are coming back to haunt R. Kelly. Whether he is guilty or not, to me, is not the important factors at play. Our reactions to the situation as a culture is what disturbs me. Many people have been calling for a mute of the singer’s music and asking that streaming sites remove it altogether, but why now? Most times, corporate companies will take a politically correct stance to protect their business models, in order to appease the general public. Removing his music from featured playlist is one of those moves; however, the artist’s music is still continuing to soar.


One of the questions that continue to plague us as a culture is: should we separate the art from the person creating the art? Would your life be the same if you never experience R. Kelly’s greatest hits? More importantly, would your life be the same now if you never listened to R. Kelly again? We as a society cannot hold other people to higher standards because they are artists, rich, or not genuinely good people overall. If you don’t want to listen to Kelly’s music, then don’t. If you want to listen to Kelly’s music that is your choice.


To this point, most of Kelly’s accusers have been people of color. This raises the question, has the #MeToo movement benefitted women of color and in lower class communities? If Kelly’s accusers were white women, would he have already been put away altogether? According to BBC, on May 17, R. Kelly responded to the #MuteRKelly campaign with the following: "I'm handcuffed by my destiny," he says, clutching a cigar. "They should've did this [expletive] 30 years ago. "It's too late. The music has been injected into the world." Is it too late to mute R. Kelly? Send us an email or DM us at @wellvyl_mag on Instagram and let us know your thoughts. Is there anyway for R. Kelly to live better and be better?