The story of Robert Kelly is heartbreaking and tragic. If you haven’t spent the last month under a rock, you probably know the singer’s ceiling caved in when Lifetime released a documentary called "Surviving R. Kelly."
The allegations Kelly faces are the acts of a monster. If Kelly committed these crimes, there is no jail worthy of delivering the punishment he deserves. However, the overwhelming criticism Kelly faces will come to an end. When it’s over, our society needs to look at Kelly from a different perspective.
When Kelly sang the words, "If I can see it, I can do it," I felt uplifted. Kelly’s song, “The World’s Greatest” helped me to see the potential I had. The news about R. Kelly left me conflicted because I quested how a man who once sang songs about hope could destroy young children’s hope.
Although it’s funny to crack jokes about Kelly’s predicament, it will not get his victims justice. Repeatedly describing how horrible Kelly is won’t bring justice to anyone. The judicial system will get justice for the all the victims, but the public needs to desire an answer for what changed Kelly.
Pedophiles are not born pedophiles. Just like any other behavior, it’s learned. Kelly was not always the man we know today. Somewhere in his past, a moment sent Kelly down a dark and twisted road. We need to put forth more effort to figure out what this moment was.
Kelly’s life, for all intensive purposes, is over. The damage is already complete. Kelly left a lot of pain behind him, but the only thing that could make this pain worse is not learning from it. Figuring out why Kelly did what he did doesn’t seem to be a priority.
The good version of Kelly died a long time ago. This man lost his battle between being a pedophile and a good man. Pedophiles are a plague on this society and we have allowed them to exist for too long.
There are other people who are not as famous as Kelly but are facing the same battle every day. Those people don’t make headlines today, but if we don’t learn from Kelly, they may be tomorrow.
Donald Fountain is a 21-year-old mass communication sophomore from Saint Francisville, Louisiana.