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Watch: John Legend Explains Why He Spoke About R. Kelly

By Akinwale Akinyoade 17 February 2019   |   10:00 am

During a recent appearance on “Real Time With Bill Maher”, Grammy award-winning singer, John Legend has disclosed that he spoke out about R. Kelly to give a voice to the “powerless” victims.

Legend who also revealed he never plays Kelly’s music at parties went further to discuss the #MeToo movement.

Speaking about the #MeToo movement in the music industry, Maher said,

“I think a lot of people have asked in the last few years, like, ‘When is the #MeToo movement going to come to the music industry?I think what a lot of people are thinking is ‘God that’s so ubiquitous in the music industry, where would you even start?'”

Yeah, I don’t know,” Legend replied. “I mean I think clearly we’re having this conversation about R.Kelly, there’s another article this week in The New York Times about another musician and so I think there’s a conversation being had. I just think music is probably a bit more decentralised.”

It would be recalled that Legend was one of the biggest stars to appear on “Surviving R. Kelly”, a Lifetime’s docuseries about victims of alleged sexual abuse of multiple women and underage girls speaking out against Kelly.

Legend said the allegations against Kelly were “ignored” for so long because the victims were “pretty powerless” and didn’t have people to speak up for them.

“That’s really why I spoke up,” Legend said. “I have friends who are activists that were speaking up for those victims and a lot of people were ignoring them. The guy who wrote about it in Chicago was saying, ‘I learned as a white guy writing…I learned that black women are the least valued women in society because when I was writing about this no one cared, no one paid attention.’ So these victims didn’t have the power, didn’t have the standing to get attention paid to what happened to them. And so it was good that this documentary paid proper attention to them.”

When asked if it is allowed to still play Kelly’s music at a party. Legend calmly replied,

“I actually, I don’t play it.”

Watch the interview below:

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