The jury has declared R. Kelly is not guilty on all 14 counts in his child-pornography trial.
No big surprise there. Although given the make-up of the jury, my hopes were raised, I can’t lie.
TMZ reported that nearly half of the R. Kelly trial jurors said that the ultimate deciding factor in their not-guilty verdict was the absence of the alleged victim from the trial. Even though they “absolutely believed” it was him on the tape.
“Five of the twelve jurors met with reporters immediately after handing down the acquittal,” TMZ reports. “They said they just couldn’t reach a verdict even though they voted on the hour, every hour because the alleged victim hadn’t testified and refused to cooperate.
Repeat after me: Paid off.
Had Kells been accused of sleeping with a 15 year-old white woman, I don’t think Kells fans would be celebrating today. And even if jurors couldn’t make out whether or not the woman was of age or not, just sitting there in court and having to watch a Black man urinate on a white woman would have been enough to put him under the jail. And I can almost guarantee you that the Black women on the jury would’ve led the charge for the guilty verdict.
But he wasn’t. He was accused of sleeping with an underage Black girl, and well—we know what the worth of a Black girl is these days.
So what went wrong? I’ve been trying to figure it out and after re-examining my original notes from the make-up of the jury, I’ve come up with the following.
The pastor’s wife. A Black Baptist, she and Kelly both live in Olympia Fields, but she claims that she hasn’t heard much about him.
I said it then, and I am going to say it now, she was lying. An undercover R. Kelly fan from the start. Black, female, Baptist church! Please.
The Christian. A Black man who appears to be in his 50s. Only knows Kelly for the song “I Believe I Can Fly,” though he suspects his kids may know more about him. Does not like to see pornographic material on public display.
I seriously doubt this one too. “I Believe I Can Fly?” C’mon now, he knew more than he alluded too.
The teacher’s aide. A Black woman who works at a Catholic school. Says her friends have discussed the videotape at the center of the trial and are split about Kelly’s innocence. Some say he’s the man in the video, others insist it’s not him. Appears to be in her early 30s.
She knew the truth and didn’t want to send her beloved Kells to the slammer.
The Bush-hater. A white man who appears to be in his late 30s or early 40s. Carries a backpack with an “Impeach Bush” button. Said he would hold his jury service to the highest standards.
He probably voted not guilty as his way to offer reparations to Blacks for what whites did to them.
Between these four, I suspect they were able to strong arm the jury into a not guilty verdict.
But what do you expect from a jury in a city where Kells is seen as a king and can’t do any wrong?
Tape or no tape, Black people refused to believe this man was guilty of anything other than making good music. 14 counts didn’t stop us from flocking to his concerts, knowing all along that was him on the tape. We didn’t care. All we cared about was getting our groove on.
As I have said before, denial is a defense mechanism in which a person is faced with a fact that is too painful to accept and rejects it instead, insisting that it is not true despite what may be overwhelming evidence. The subject may deny the reality of the unpleasant fact altogether, admit the fact but deny its seriousness, or admit both the fact and seriousness but deny responsibility.
I guess if there’s anything left to say about R. Kelly, it’s that I am more disappointed in Black America’s refusal to even acknowledge the 14 counts lodged against him. We never wavered in our support for him and all the while most of us saw that tape. His innocence was just the icing on the cake and the validation that Kelly fans needed to continue in their support of him.