R Kelly fires back at Lady Gaga after she apologized for working with him
After the docu-series Surviving R. Kelly aired on Lifetime back in January, a spotlight was once again placed upon the R&B musician's alleged abuse. Kelly has been accused of sexually abusing women, often as young as 16, since the 1990s, but this release brought the topic to the forefront once again.
Despite these allegations being circulated for years, there have been many musicians who have collaborated with R. Kelly since, and now many fans aren't happy that this was over-looked by some of their favourite artists in the music industry. Lady Gaga was one such artist, after making the song 'Do What U Want (With My Body)' with him in 2013.
In January, many of her fans called on her to apologise for collaborating with Kelly, and she followed suit. Referring to the alleged actions as “horrifying and indefensible," Gaga made it clear that she stands "behind these women 1000%, believe them, know they are suffering and in pain, and feel strongly that their voices should be heard and taken seriously," writing a full statement on Twitter.
"As a victim of sexual assault myself, I made both the song and the video at a dark time in my life," she wrote.
"My intention was to create something extremely defiant and provocative because I was angry and still hadn't processed the trauma that had occurred in my own life. The song is called Do What U Want (With My Body), I think it's clear how explicitly twisted my thinking was at the time.
"If I could go back and have a talk with my younger self I'd tell her to go through the therapy I have since then, so that I could understand the confused post-traumatic state that I was in - or if therapy was not available to me or anyone in my situation - to seek help, and speak as openly and honestly as possible about what we've been through."
Gaga wasn't the only musician to come out against Kelly after the docu-series aired. John Legend appeared in the program to denounce Kelly, while Ne-Yo wrote: "Music is important. It really is. But it’s not more important than protecting our children, protecting our little girls".
Chance the Rapper, who collaborated with Kelly in 2015, also appeared in the docu-series, and has publicly owned up to his own failings for not believing the stories of the women who accused him.
Kelly recently made news again recently, after he sat down for an extensive interview with CBS This Morning's Gayle King. During the interview, he fervently denied the decades of allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct, but also directed some ire towards those in the entertainment industry who had criticised him, including Gaga.
“[Gaga’s] a very great talent and all and it’s unfortunate that her intelligence go to such a short level when it comes to that,” he said.
“You know, I have nothing against none of these artists. But I think it’s not professional for them to do that, because something like this can happen to any artist, anybody famous. Anybody famous can get accused of so many different things.”
The full interview aired on CBS on Wednesday.