Doing It With R. Kelly

Stripping the sexiness right out of sex

How can a guy with such a puerile view of love and sex become the bard of his generation? Well, it helps that Kelly isn't the only one dumbing us down and fixing on the lowest common denominator. The Farrelly Brothers, ODB, Paris Hilton, and John Ashcroft have all made their contributions in the war against privacy. Inference is dead. Speak to us like 10-year-olds, or we will not understand. This is a world that R. Kelly was made to serenade, one perfectly designed for his callow approach to the lyrical.

Kelly: a preference for the pornographic over the erotic
photo: Reisig & Taylor
Kelly: a preference for the pornographic over the erotic

Of course, that leaves us old fogies and hopeless romantics out of the loop. I like to think that I'm a freak. But a cantillating R. Kelly consistently leaves me determined to redouble my efforts at Bible study, even his recent innocuous incarnation would sully the listener. "Step In the Name of Love" is masterful bit of whitewashing, but makes me itch—and not in a good way. I know which way Kelly is stepping. I'm doing my best to walk the other way.

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