This story might be triggering for some so continue reading at your own risk. This phenomenon called cancel culture is a very slippery slope. With internet gangsters and gossip blogs hungry for clicks it’s easy to get sucked into demonizing artists for not only valid reasons, but for them simply not sharing your views on any particular subject. We were guilty as sin when it came to the Kanye/MAGA debacle. Though when it comes to celebrities and the industry as a whole we don’t know the character of any of these individuals. For all we know our favorite morning news anchor who smiles on queue could be the devil incarnate.
Regarding R. Kelly we believe he has victimized a countless number of individuals and he should probably be locked in a closet for the rest of his life. However, many of the people that will scream to #muterkelly have predators in their inner circle that they would never in a million years believe was an abuser. Unfortunately it is those very people that we would least expect preying on the vulnerable because they are master manipulators.
Regarding Harvey Weinstein so many actresses came forward, some to the detriment of their own careers, to tell humiliating stories you wouldn’t want your best friend to know, let alone the whole world. Weinstein will have his day in court, though we are not entirely confident that his punishment will fit his crimes.
So fast forward to Taraji trending on Twitter for an instastory comparison of #muterkelly vs #muteharveyweinstein. In the comparison #muterkelly was massive and #muteharveyweinstein had just 29 posts. This came on the heels of Erykah Badu giving an unpopular opinion on stage during her concert in Chicago viewing R. Kelly as someone who was abused himself and needs help. Now the two are being dragged through Twitter like Linuses blanket and folks wanna cancel them like black bananas.
Recently Detroit’s own Michael Eric Dyson put out an IG video calling for an end to cancel culture, breaking it down quite nicely, it’s worth a view. It made us think a little differently about our calamity with Kanye and gave us a clearer perspective. We say all of that to say this, it is tremendously important to separate the art from the artist and if you cannot, it is your prerogative to mute whoever you want. The issue comes when we try to cancel folks who have endured over 20 years in the industry, not because of their own transgressions, but because their views don’t align with ours.
You might wonder why Jay-Z is on this cover photo. Well simply put, no one is calling to mute the person who has collaborated with both R. Kelly and Harvey Weinstein on multiple projects and that is Jay-Z. Do you remove the song “The World’s Greatest” from the Ali movie? Do you pull “The Kalief Browder Story”? We can condemn and convict the abuser without desecrating the art. Movies, television and music are collaborative efforts. When you cancel the work of the monsters you see, you are trashing hours of work from people who only live in credits and liner notes.
For all things ragpapermedia scroll down and enter your email to have posts delivered straight to your inbox or sign up for our newsletter through our pop up form. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!