Kanye, Bill Cosby, R. Kelly: when it all falls down Celeb culture is and always has been insane, but this week is just surreal
The good ol’ U.S.A. loves itself some celebrity drama because we’re the country that places so much value on it. And now we living in a society that never goes dark. Tweets, updates, IG captions, investigative reports, social videos, headlines, notifications, group chat gifs pop through our screens so relentlessly … very few stories even get shelf lives. Tristan Thompson’s recent cheating fiasco? Already old news and the Cleveland Cavaliers haven’t even made it out the first round. But some weeks? Like this one? You just want to delete every social app from your phone and go back to the days of dial-up internet and printing out MapQuest directions. It’s truly confounding.
Bill Cosby — He was found guilty today on all three counts of aggravated indecent assault against Andrea Constand, a former Temple University employee whom he’d mentored. When I asked my grandma how she felt about the allegations against Cosby over a year ago and her logic was simple, “Ain’t nobody gonna say the same thing about you 50 times over multiple decades and it not be some element of truth behind it.” With each count carrying up to 10 years in prison, the likelihood is that Cosby—an American icon via his transcendent The Cosby Show, and later A Different World—will spend his remaining days behind bars. There’s a possibility the sentences could be served concurrently, but regardless the sentence is the coup de grace in one of the most public downfalls for one of the world’s most well-known entertainers—and more importantly perhaps a moment of closure for the women who accused him of similar acts of nonconsensual aggression. This is a week though, that “Bill Cosby is going to die in jail” might not even be the wildest of the week.
Bill Cosby accuser Lili Bernard reacts to the news that the comedian has been found guilty on all three counts of sexual assault at his retrial: “It is a victory for all sexual assault survivors, female and male.” pic.twitter.com/42Fh6zEJ68
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) April 26, 2018
Nas — The legendary rapper faces accusations from his ex-wife singer, rapper and Cooking Channel host Kelis who said the MC was both physically and emotionally violent during their marriage in an interview with Hollywood Unlocked. The former couple have been engaged in a custody battle for years, but aside from that and Nas’ 2012 Life Is Good, very little has been revealed about their five-year marriage.
The notoriously private Kelis said the leaked pictures of Rihanna (following the 2009 assault by ex-boyfriend Chris Brown) prompted her to end the marriage. This is the second time the Illmatic rapper has been accused of physical abuse in an intimate relationship. Carmen Bryan, most famously remembered as the woman between Jay-Z and Nas during their long ago beef, also alleged the latter was abusive when asked about the affair. Nas has an album set to drop June 15, and it’s unclear how this news will will impact the rollout of his first new project in six years. The project was, of course, recently announced by and is being produced by Kanye West. Which brings us to…
Kanye West — I’m tired of hearing about Kanye West, but here I am writing about him. The thing that irks me about his gluttony of tweets is how they’re manipulated—by him and the powers around him. Chance The Rapper tweeting that black people don’t have to be Democrats in defense of Kanye’s pro-Trump tweets is true.
Talked to him two days ago. He’s in a great space and not affected by folk tryna question his mental or physical health. Same Ye from the Vmas, same Ye from the telethon. https://t.co/2zY3KpllV2
— Chance The Rapper (@chancetherapper) April 25, 2018
Black people don’t have to be democrats.
— Chance The Rapper (@chancetherapper) April 25, 2018
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) April 25, 2018
And Kanye putting a stress on “free thinking” is important, too. Groupthink is an epidemic in our society. But here’s where the tweets become a problem. Kanye rocking a Make America Great Again hat and praising Trump only enables 45 and the energy around him. Look at how quick Trump was to retweet West thanking him for his support (while he remains quiet on an American hero). Or notice how Donald Trump Jr. now retweets Kim Kardashian.
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) April 25, 2018
This isn’t the promotion of free thinking as Kanye says, just cynical manipulation of what he’s saying.
R. Kelly — Where we are: Legendary radio jock Tom Joyner has vowed to never again play R. Kelly’s music on his radio show. Kelley’s publicist, assistant and lawyer all peace’d out on him following new sexual misconduct allegations in BBC Three’s new documentary R. Kelly: Sex, Girls and Videotapes.
There are also allegations that he is the leader of a sex cult in which women are being held against their will. All of these things happened this month. It seems he has used his music and the influence that comes with celebrity to manipulate young women and their families for years. There is no separation between the two. None.
Diamond & Silk — I know very little about Diamond and Silk, real names Lynette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, who fashion themselves President Donald Trump’s most outspoken and loyal supporters. I do know they’re blasphemous for giving a bad name to both Lisa Raye’s character in The Players Club and to the R&B group that gave us “Meeting In My Bedroom.” I also know they’re “famous” (strong emphasis on the quotation marks) because they’re two black women who are strong pro-Trump supporters. Somehow they found their way to Capitol Hill to testify before the House Judiciary Committee with regard to supposed filtering practices by social media platforms. They were, of course, subsequently caught lying under oath.
Please. Put this week in rice.