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This permissiveness, along with the disinvestments in Black women and girls within the wider society, has created fertile hunting grounds for predators like Kelly. So long as they confined their activities to intra-racial predation, prevailing sensibilities among wide swaths of the public—both Black and non-Black—have been content to let it be. And many Black women themselves have provided defensive cover, an entirely unsurprising fact given the saturated dimensions of rape culture and the glaring asymmetries of racial solidarity.

The well-documented history of sexualized racism that white Americans have used to victimize Black men can no longer serve as an alibi for anyone to excuse or downplay the disparities in power that permit influential Black men to abuse and sexually victimize vulnerable Black women and girls. He had averaged about 4. And at least initial reports indicate that Kelly may indeed profit from the Lifetime documentary: a spike in his streamed and downloaded music immediately after the airing this month indicated that at least some people were more intrigued than repelled by the specter of enjoying a soundtrack seasoned with the alleged abuse of women and girls.

Here anti-racism marshals support for Black men accused of abuse, but it is absent in the defense of the women and girls who have come forward to hold them accountable. It also paved the way for the most conservative appointee to the Supreme Court in a generation to utterly reshape the constitutional landscape.

Unlike Kelly, Thomas is not alleged to have preyed on women under the age of consent. Their alleged misdeeds are, obviously, not comparable. Both cases involved the deployment of higher social power and status to extort sexual favors from female victims with incommensurate resources to resist. Confessing to being an equal opportunity lover to a sultry beat, Kelly recasts over a dozen sexually abused Black women and girls into his backup performers, posing to punctuate his prowess, his vulnerability—and importantly, his innocence.

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If he is able to survive the current scrutiny, his SOB performance could catapult him to the head of the class. But there are risks as well: the blatantly manipulative use of his talents in the face of the now well-known allegations could also prove his undoing. His marriage to the fifteen-year-old singer Aaliyah—the niece of his manager—was annulled.

Their marriage certificate had been falsified to state that she was eighteen. Yes, a fifteen-year-old in a sexual relationship with a twenty-seven-year-old is a number alright—an illegal one. But the fact remains that by current legal rules, it simply is.

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Age is a number. For this reason alone the MuteRKelly campaign remains an imperative. Their alleged tactic was to dredge up anyone willing to point a lethal finger at an innocent man, and Anita Hill was cast for the job. You will be lynched, destroyed, caricatured by a committee of the U. Senate, rather than hung from a tree. Now here comes this big ass conspiracy. Still wanna hate me Still wanna stone me Still wanna chain me I think they wanna kill me.

With Thomas, the claimed conspiracy was all about political power.

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The stakes there were certainly high: poised to replace the liberal, pro-civil rights vote of Thurgood Marshall on the Supreme Court, Thomas stood on the brink of exercising significant power to control the fate of civil rights for the foreseeable future. Once Thomas was confirmed, he indeed went on to wreak havoc on civil rights, providing a fifth and decisive vote to undermine the Voting Rights Act , to erode affirmative action , to turn a contested election over to George W.

Bush , and to curb campaign finance reform. Yet, the plausibility of a conspiracy against Thomas strained credulity, given evidence that Hill had divulged this information to confidants several years before Thomas was even nominated. What about R. What pressing issues are at stake that might feed a far-reaching conspiracy to bring him down?

Not having one makes the conspiracy defense appear to be the desperate grab that it is. We will vigorously resist this attempted public lynching of a black man who has made extraordinary contributions to our culture. So bottom line, Kelly is being lynched for having sex—and by extension, so are the women and girls he had sex with. Caught up in this swoony bait-and-switch refrain, Kelly hopes to convince the public that the sex police are trying to shut Black pleasure down. It is his abusive conduct—including pedophilia, child pornography, domestic violence, and coercion—that is at issue here, not a collective policing of Black desire.

What some of these girls want is too much for the radio station. They wanted it. They got it. And the parents implicitly approved of it. The strategy is so well-worn that a wide and diverse group can be recruited to play along. Participating in the attempted defamation of Anita Hill were senators, operatives, and lay people alike who were mobilized to spin a tale of Hill as an attention-starved, sex-crazed, disgruntled, and vengeful Black woman.

According to this narrative, behind the facade of the accomplished and reserved law professor who had worked at an evangelical Christian university for several years was an angry freak who dreamt up Long Dong Silver to star in her own pornographic story. And for a while the deployment of these worn stereotypes worked, even among the population that stood to be most harmed by them: Black women.

The crux that makes this move work decade after decade is the asymmetric solidarity within Black politics on matters of sexual racism. Thomas and Kelly can mobilize Black sympathy by shrouding themselves in the bloody history of sexual racism against Black men. But their own use of racist stereotypes against Black women that emerged from this same history barely warrants comment, let alone censure. In the absence of a sustained commitment to repudiate racist stereotypes against Black women, efforts to portray Black women as Jezebels who lie and cheat to feed their insatiable appetites is perfectly consistent with the male-centric demands of racial solidarity.

I Believe I Can Lie

To make this defense work even against juveniles, Kelly doubles down on the adultification of Black girls, particularly the widespread stereotypes in our culture that depict Black girls as less innocent and more adult-like than their white peers. This culture-wide adultification of Black girls may help explain why criminal charges against Kelly have been elusive. I know it sounds ridiculous.

I voted against. I disregarded all of what they had to say. Although attitudes have started to shift around the issue of domestic child sex trafficking, Black girls continue to be disproportionately punished for the acts of violence done to them. Even though they are under the age of consent in most states, and federal law clearly defines them as victims, Black children comprise more than 60 percent of all prostitution arrests under the age of eighteen —the highest of any racial group.

A study found that 92 percent of trafficking victims in the Los Angeles County juvenile justice system were Black. Nonetheless, parental negligence, even in the made-up world that Kelly sings about, is not a defense either to credible charges of pedophilia or for any other kind of abuse.

Now, I admit a family member touched me From a child to the age 14 While I laid asleep, took my virginity So scared to say something, so I just put the blame on me.

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This table-turning strategy helped SOB graduate Clarence Thomas, barely qualified by the American Bar Association , to win confirmation to the Supreme Court, and Kelly has banked on the hope that his own history of abuse will absolve him of lingering doubts about his culpability. This was evidence, wrote Danforth, of the gross unfairness to which Thomas was being subjected—a man who overcame adversity only to face it again just as he reached the pinnacle of success. Of course not one bit of this public or private performance—however moving it may have been to sympathizers—had any bearing on whether Thomas harassed Hill.

Kelly seeks sympathy in a similar fashion, citing abuse in his childhood as well as in his professional life to stretch his vulnerabilities into a defense against his accusers. Just as Thomas had before him, he evokes the narrative of his own pain in order to dramatize his plea for sympathy and public understanding in the face of damning accusations against him. Condition: Good. Seller Inventory SA05D Satisfaction Guaranteed!

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