Tyrese Gibson sparked outrage on social media by defending R. Kelly in a social media chat with rapper Fat Joe.
The singer and actor joined Joe for a chat on his The Joprah Show on Instagram TV on Friday (August 7, 2020), during which he spoke about whether Kelly can still be praised as an artist despite being in jail awaiting trial on multiple sex crime charges.
During the chat, Tyrese praised Kelly’s music and for figuring, “out a way to change and evolve and stay relevant over all of those years,” before adding that he knew the Ignition hitmaker, “has a lot of controversy and heat on him.”
Joe then appeared to be confused and question whether it was a good idea to praise the shamed star, to which Tyrese bizarrely replied by saying that all stars have elements of their private lives they’d rather fans didn’t know about.
“What I’ve learned over the years, there is a lot of people in our industry …. Everybody is involved in something that they don’t ever want people to know about publicly. I would say you know what let God do his job.
“If I were to find out, what everyone is into, we probably wouldn’t be a fan of anybody. There is some people who do what they do, they know how to keep their s**t completely in the closet.”
“When you have drug problems, you are alcoholic or you got vices that may be inappropriate or whatever the case may be, you’re just trying your best to do whatever it is that you’re doing hoping people don’t find out about it.”
Kelly currently in prison awaiting two separate federal trials and is accused of abusing underage girls for years – many of whom spoke out in last year’s Surviving R. Kelly documentary.
Tyrese’s comments sparked a huge backlash after they were highlighted on the Jasmine BRAND Instagram page, with one follower writing, “Drinking is a vice. Drugs are a vice. Rape is not a vice. Pedophilia is not a vice.”
Another added: “Say that when he snatch up your daughter. We don’t want to see you on here crying again. Pitiful.”
In a comment under the original video, Tyrese appeared to address the controversial nature of the chat, writing: “This interview ain’t for kids and childish folk with short attention spans….. We went all the way tonight…..”