The Art Does Not Separate Itself from the Artist

Kate Meyers, Opinion Editor

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R. Kelly, Chris Brown, Kevin Spacey, etc., are commonly seen all over the media in this generation. At nearly every party, “Ignition” is played, plenty of people have seen “Casino Jack,” and barely anyone thinks twice about it. People think of them as artists, musicians, and actors, but rarely consider them to be criminals.

Though some may argue that it’s possible to still consistently listen to an artist’s music or watch one’s movies without supporting them, this isn’t true.

Becoming a consumer to an artists gives them fame and publicity, which leads to money, which, eventually, leads to influence and power. This type of privilege should not be given to abusers, or people who have been accused of sexual misconduct, no matter how talented listeners or viewers think they are.

For example, on Spotify, artists are paid $0.0064 per stream, and while it doesn’t sound like a lot, it adds up for the leading artists that are making millions. Not only are they making money from how many people listen to their music on their devices, artists are being paid hundreds of thousands per show. Movie directors are being paid an average salary of $71,620, all based on how successful their movies

When we watch these movies and we listen to this music, we boost success rates for the people who created them, which is rewarding them.”


It’s completely true that many bad people can definitely be artistically talented, however, when we watch these movies and we listen to this music, we boost success rates for the people who created them, which is rewarding them despite of their horrible actions or their sickening character.

This is a toxic ideology that artists should not be held accountable for their actions just because of their fame, and it does not consider the well-being of the people they’ve harmed.

By supporting these artists that have done such terrible things, people are validating their actions. It condones the actions they’ve committed, and invalidates the victims of the crimes. There are survivors who have been raped by celebrities, and have to watch as people idolize them, fully aware of what they’ve done. This is a feeling of being pushed aside in their traumatic experiences, that no one should have to go through.

Victims of celebrities’ crimes deserve acknowledgement and support, because a crime is a crime, no matter how well that person can sing.

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