R. Kelly‘s upcoming performance in Detroit on Wednesday will be met with protests over allegations of sexual misconduct leveled against him.
“Our city is still healing from thousands of untested rape kits. We’re No. 2 in human trafficking. How can we let someone who has sexual misconduct allegations … with young children, with young, black girls perform here?” said Nicole Denson, who is the lead organizer of the protest and associate director of Wayne County SAFE.
“How can we let this happen in the #MeToo movement, when there are so many people being held accountable? How can we sit here and let R. Kelly perform here in our city? What does this say about how we value little black girls?” she asked.
–READ: R. Kelly evicted from ‘abandoned’ Georgia home–
The organization that Denson represents works with survivors of sexual assault to provide not only rape kits but also counseling and legal help.
Denson and Kalimah Johnson, the founder and executive director of Detroit’s SASHA Center, have also turned to the Detroit City Council to ask them to come out in opposition against the show, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Kenyette Barnes of Atlanta, who co-created the #MuteRKelly social media campaign, said that it’s important to hold venues accountable for choosing to host Kelly. Last year, she became involved when she heard that Kelly would be performing at a Georgia venue. And she isn’t going to stop her activism, either.
“My view was that he’s playing in a taxpayer-funded venue. I’m going to lobby them to cancel the concert,” she said.
R. Kelly’s alleged sex cult
Kelly has been dogged by sexual misconduct allegations for years, but perhaps the most infamous stories are those dredged up by a recent BuzzFeed report detailing a so-called sex cult in which Kelly reportedly kept young women against their will, brainwashing them and telling them when they could eat, sleep, and even use the bathroom.
Kelly has denied the accusations, but in the era of the #MeToo movement, that isn’t going to save him from public outcry and scrutiny.