Does anyone remember the ’80s Jamaican rapper Shabba Ranks? If you recall, in 1992, during an appearance on a music show, he held a copy of a Bible and stated that the “word of God” advocated the death of homosexuals. He obviously was too stupid to realize that the music business has a number of gay men in key positions of power, and they did what they were supposed to do: made sure his music label dropped him like he was on fire. He’s tried several comebacks but by and large, his efforts at reviving his once meteoric career have failed, spectacularly. Good.
Which brings me to R. Kelly, who is currently being targeted by the Women of Color (WOC) group within the @TimesUp movement “which is calling on the entertainment industry to cut ties with Kelly, who has long been the subject of allegations of sexual abuse and the mistreatment of women and underage girls.” It’s about damn time. In spite of him being acquitted of charges of sexual misconduct a number of years ago, there’s far too much smoke for there not to be some fire.
The only reason he has been able to skate by for so long is that his victims are all young black girls, a demographic society evidently doesn’t give a damn about. I’m not advocating that he be charged once again, instead, I’m joining with the WOC in calling for a boycott by the entertainment industry.
An open letter from the group begins, “To Our Fellow Women of Color: We see you. We hear you. Because we are you.” A boycott of Kelly is in its nascent stages, and just like every other black man accused of wrongdoing he’s claiming that he is being “lynched.” But Kelly has it all wrong. It’s not that he is being lynched, it’s that he NEEDS to be lynched. And black men should buy black women the rope.
And then there’s Kanye West. What can you say about a motherfucker that’s as ignorant as he is? Even his wife says that she is “troubled” by his recent outbursts, but obviously has little influence over his behavior, which increasingly is showing signs of a looming mental breakdown.
West, appearing on TMZ, said, “When you hear about slavery for 400 years… for 400 years? That sounds like a choice.” He then added: “You was there for 400 years and it’s all of y’all? It’s like we’re mentally imprisoned.”
The singer Will. i. am. said that it was “one of the most ignorant statements that anybody who came from the hood could ever say about their ancestors.” He also said the comments “broke my heart” and were “harmful.”
But it was Van Lathan, a black employee of TMZ, who immediately rebutted West’s remarks best by stating, “And while you are making music and being an artist and living the life that you’ve earned by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives. We have to deal with the marginalization that has come from the 400 years of slavery that you said, for our people, was a choice. Frankly, I’m disappointed, I’m appalled and, brother, I am unbelievably hurt by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me, that’s not real.”
After weathering a ton of criticism that even his wealth can’t protect him from, West of course attempted to backtrack — but it was too little, too late. How long are his fans going to continue to support this idiot? Don’t they realize that by continuing to do so only will cause him to become sicker?
As blacks, we need to state loud and clear that we are no longer willing to support monsters simply because they are of the same skin shade as us. We make ourselves look like children and fools when we do so.
From CoolCleveland correspondent Mansfield B. Frazier mansfieldfATgmail.com. Frazier’s From Behind The Wall: Commentary on Crime, Punishment, Race and the Underclass by a Prison Inmate is available in hardback. Snag your copy and have it signed by the author at http://NeighborhoodSolutionsInc.