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Taraji Caught In Media Firestorm for Comparing Weinstein and R. Kelly

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Last night, Taraji P. Henson, posted a questionable video that got fans rethinking attending her next film. Possibly defending R. Kelly, the actress has to clean up her social media mess.

Once Surviving R. Kelly aired, the negative reception came from people who were upset that Black women were demanding justice and were receiving it. Detractors took issue with Black men being easily written off in the media. When compared to what was happening for White sexual abusers in Hollywood, they assumed because they heard no further developments #TimesUp was at a standstill. This became the #FirstThem movement, which asserts White abusers are not met with justice in the same way. Taraji seems to share the same sentiment as Tariq.

Equal Justice

Taraji posted a video of herself searching #MuteRKelly which had thousands of posts and #MuteWeinstein, which had none. While she didn’t say anything, her video implied she could possibly be defending R. Kelly.

Attracting the fire of her fans before the release of What Men Want, Taraji has been called out for not understanding the #MuteRKelly movement. The organization and following hashtag were created to bring awareness to the crimes of sexual abuser R. Kelly and end his career as an R&B singer.

Fans wondered how someone in the film industry could conflate #MuteRKelly with #TimesUp and #MeToo. Involving Harvey Weinstein in the matter just made it even worse. He is facing already facing multiple charges while R. Kelly prosecutors are still building their case. When detractors of R. Kelly’s victims bring their gnarled fingers to the keyboard to say “Where is Harvey’s documentary?”, it becomes clear they haven’t done the research. There are currently two documentaries in progress.

Et tu, Taraji?

It is difficult to see how Taraji could just conjure up reason for her video, especially with the backlash Erykah Badu just received. The topic is just too sensitive for many, particularly those who once supported R. Kelly and are finding their silence was complicity.

Along with attempting to equate one man’s crimes to another, Taraji showed she still has some internalized misogynoir to work out. A large portion of R. Kelly’s supporters are Black women who believe that, above all, it is their place to defend Black men from public persecution. They accept the notion that Black women are to work as a shield or sponge to absorb negativity because it is hard to be Black and male in this world. Then what is it like to be Black and female?

Taraji left fans with a brief clarification after hours of educational reads. While fans begrudgingly admitted they suffered through Acrinomy, they hoped Taraji would see the error of her ways. With her film What Men Want set for release Feb 6th and her star on the walk of fame to be revealed Jan 28th, she better start her apology press tour a la Kevin Hart or that film will flop.

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R. Kelly Charged AGAIN

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Thursday prosecutors in New York charged embattled singer-songwriter R. Kelly with bribery, alleging the artist and his crew bribed a government official over 20 years ago. 

On August 30, 1994, the day before Kelly married the late Aaliyah, he bribed a public servant to doctor an ID in an effort to obtain a marriage license to the underage girl. That’s one day before the two got married. 

via GIPHY

Reminder: Kelly has always maintained he did not know Aaliyah’s true age at the time, but this new allegation could make him rethink his statement. So far, his attorneys have brushed off the charge calling it “still the same nonsense.”

The charge is being added to an ongoing racketeering case against Kelly which includes child pornography, sexual exploitation of a minor, and kidnapping indictments. 

Expect to see this all play out in federal court in 2020. Grab your popcorn.

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R. Kelly Girlfriend Denies Creating Patreon Account, Parents Respond

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In a video statement given to TMZ on Wednesday, Joycelyn Savage, 23, fiercely denied setting up a Patreon account in her name or posting a cryptic message to an Instagram account previously linked to her. 

“It has been said that I have left him and he has abused me and all kinds of nonsense. I have said before none of it is true… I also want to say please do not believe what you see and hear on social media. That is not my Instagram. Someone is impersonating me.”

Last week, Patreon, a website that helps creators earn money, shut down an account claiming to be Savage citing an inability to “verify the identity of the account holder.” Many donated to the campaign with the expectation of getting more details of the abuses alleged in the anonymous posts. According to the unauthenticated posts, R. Kelly tormented Savage with everything from physical abuse to frequent golden showers.

In response to their daughter’s scripted video, the parents spoke through their attorney. We’re saddened and disappointed to learn that Joycelyn Savage has said that she was not the person operating the Patreon account… we deeply desired to hear her story and in her own voice…”

Read the full statement below:

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A Complete Timeline of the Gabrielle Union-America’s Got Talent Saga

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In late November it was revealed that actress Gabrielle Union had been fired from her spot as a judge on the NBC show America’s Got Talent, but troubling reports of her exit have caused everyone from Janelle Monae to Howard Stern to weigh in on the controversy. Here’s a complete timeline of everything we know.

November 22, 2019 – Variety Magazine announces NBC will not renew Union’s contract

In addition to Union’s exit, it is revealed fellow judge Julianne Hough will also not be returning to the popular television show. Male judges Simon Cowell, Howie Mandel, and Terry Crews all expected to remain on the roster.

AMERICA’S GOT TALENT — “Quarter Finals 1” Episode 1412 — Pictured: (l-r) Gabrielle Union, Julianne Hough — (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

November 24, 2019 – News of ‘toxic culture’ at AGT hits the internet

Sources with direct knowledge of the culture at AGT describe the now-infamous joke that put Union at odds with show producers. During a guest appearance, comedian Jay Leno joked that a picture of Simon Cowell with his dogs reminded him of something “on the menu at a Korean restaurant.” The actress learned of the joke and explained to producers this joke would not be well-received particularly by Asian crewmembers and viewers. She reportedly urged producers and an unnamed NBC executive to scrap the offensive joke and report it to the network’s human resources department. The line was ultimately thrown out, but a formal report or complaint was never filed with HR.

SANTA MONICA, CA – JULY 11: Gabrielle Union attends Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Sports 2019 at Barker Hangar on July 11, 2019 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/WireImage)

Further reports emerged describing Union and Hough receiving “excessive notes” on their appearance, with Union in particular getting regularly coached on her hairstyles being “too black.”

November 26, 2019 – Julianne Hough and NBC deny allegations

Julianne Hough released a statement claiming she “loved working with the cast, crew, and producers and the claims are not “accurate to her experience.” She goes on to say “I am happy continuing my working relationship with NBC.”

The network echoed her statement with a vehement denial of all allegations. 

November 28, 2019 – Celebrities show support for Union

As the news of NBC’s culture made its waves, celebrities voiced their support for Union. Stars like Janelle Monae, Ellen Pompeo, and democratic presidential hopeful Julián Castro, among many, voiced their opinions on the matter in favor of the ousted actress.

December 1, 2019 – Jay Leno speaks out, NBC releases new statement 

The comedian at the center of the alleged racist joke spoke of nothing but his fondness of Union. “I love Gabrielle Union, she’s a great girl. I really enjoyed working with her.” When asked whether he uttered the joke on the NBC show, he refused to answer. 

For its part, NBC released a new statement vowing commitment to “ensuring a respectful workplace for all employees.” The network also stated it is working with the actress’ representatives to hear her concerns and address them as necessary.

Credit: Courtesy of NBC

December 2, 2019 – Howard Stern gives his two cents

To add fuel to Union’s fire, Stern made very choice comments on his show seemingly backing up Gabrielle Union and Julianne Hough and trashing Simon Cowell. “He sets it up so that the men stay. No matter how ugly they are, no matter how old they are, no matter how fat they are, no matter how talentless they are… He constantly replaces the hot chicks with hotter chicks and younger chicks.”

Phew! That was a lot to keep up with and somehow we have a feeling this drama isn’t over yet. Only time will tell how steep the fallout will be. What do you think about all this? Give us your thoughts below.

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