Would you compare the life Jesus led to the lives of R. Kelly and Chris Brown?
R. Kelly would.
In a new interview with The Guardian to promote his new album, Black Panties, R. Kelly shares his view on media scrutiny and ‘weak’ haters.
When he watched Chris Brown become the centre of his own scandals – which began with his assault on then-girlfriend Rihanna in 2009 – Kelly says he could empathise but that he never felt sorry for him. “I only feel sorry for weak people,” he says. “And mostly what I’ve come to find is that the weak people are the ones that are the haters. The ones that’s talking about Chris Brown, or R Kelly, or anybody that’s successful? I feel sorry for them, not Chris Brown, because he’s obviously one strong individual to be able to do what he’s done. He got knocked down a little bit and he climbed up. You know, that sounds like Ali to me. That sounds like Martin Luther King to me. That sounds like a lot of the greats that have walked this earth. It even sounds a little bit like Jesus to me.”
He catches my eyes widening and clarifies: “I’m not saying that Chris Brown is Jesus or R Kelly is Jesus. But Jesus is the No 1 inspirer of someone being knocked down and rising again.”
Despite being found not guilty, Kelly is often seen as fair game for abuse and throwaway criticism. A recent Macklemore lyric from Thrift Store, for example, ran: “Probably shoulda washed this, smells like R Kelly’s sheets (Piiisssssss).” How does this affect him?
Kelly pauses. “I see them as weak too. But I don’t get into what people think of me, I’ve graduated from that.”