Lisa VanAllen On R. Kelly's New Charges: "May Our Daughters Never Know Men Like Him"

"More than 10 years after I nervously faced Rob in court, I know one thing: This will not end the way it did before. It cannot."

Lisa VanAllen, who testified against R. Kelly in his 2008 child pornography case, has penned a thoughtful New York Times op-ed that highlights her battle of alleged sexual and emotional abuse by Kelly and how she's harnessed the abuse from past relationships into lessons.

VanAllen played an important role in the acquitted case as she was the only other person who appeared in the alleged sex tape involving a 14-year-old girl. VanAllen was just 17 when she met Kelly, and 20 years old when she realized how young the other girl on the tape was. In the years since coming forward, VanAllen was ostracized for speaking out, a moment she hasn't forgotten.

“I was belittled and embarrassed,” she writes. “I was dragged for bad things I had done in my past. I was called a ‘streetwalker.’ They wanted me to feel like trash.” But with the release of the widely-viewed Lifetime documentary Surviving R. Kelly, VanAllen has been met with support and praise for her bravery.

Marking 11 years since his first child pornography case, VanAllen revealed that she watched the six-part Surviving R. Kelly documentary with her child.

"My 16-year-old daughter and I put on comfortable clothes and curled up on the couch to watch the premiere of the Lifetime documentary Surviving R. Kelly. I appeared in it, along with several of Rob’s victims," she wrote.

As the activist watched the gut-wrenching series alongside her child, she described their differing upbringings. VanAllen had been raised in the foster care systems, first becoming a victim of child sexual abuse before learning the harshness of homelessness and intimate partner violence. Her child, however, appears to have been raised absent the vicious cycles that spun Lisa into the arms of Kelly.

"I’ve protected her from things I wasn’t protected from. My daughter knows to says things like she 'wants her space' from boys who pursue her. And she dates boys her age. When I was 17, Rob was in his 30s. I was always looking for love; my daughter loves herself. This is what time has done. May our daughters never know men like Rob Kelly," VanAllen said.

She went on to list how her daughter was different from herself in their adolescent years. "she doesn’t like confrontation. I was always a fighter. But that’s because I’ve had to survive so much," she continued. "I was always looking for love; my daughter loves herself. This is what time has done. May our daughters never know men like Rob Kelly."

Read VanAllen's op-ed here.

From the Web

More on Vibe

Todd Williamson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Ty Dolla $ign Releases New Album Feat. Nicki Minaj, Roddy Ricch, Kanye West And More

After a three-year album hiatus, Ty Dolla $ign released his latest studio effort, Featuring Ty Dolla $ign, on Friday (Oct. 23).

The 25-track album features appearances from Nicki Minaj, Kid Cudi, FKA Twigs, Roddy Ricch, Jhené Aiko, Kehlani, 6lack, Young Thug, Music Soulchild, Skrillex, Quavo, Anderson Paak, Post Malone, Kanye West, and more.

Powered by previously released singles, “Ego Death,” Expensive” and By Yourself,” the new album flexes a different music muscle for the Grammy-nominated recording artists who steered clear of  making club records.

“I was intentionally trying to not make club songs [talking about] hoes and *itches and all the sh*t I used to talk about,” Ty told Vulture in a recent interview. “I was trying to, like, talk about my life, and what it is now, and really do something different with it. I got a daughter going to high school this year, and she’s paying attention, and all her friends are paying attention, so I can’t talk as crazy or do the crazy sh*t that I used to do.”

Stream Featuring Ty Dolla Sign below.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

Jay Z Launches His Own Cannabis Brand

Jay Z is venturing into the world of cannabis. The  mogul officially announced the launch of his new cannabis brand, Monogram, on Friday (Oct. 23) marking his first product collaboration since becoming chief brand strategists of the Northern California-based dispensary, Caliva, last year.

“Monogram seeks to redefine what cannabis means to consumers today,” the company said in a press release. As many marijuana storefronts have implemented new rules amid the global pandemic, Monogram is also planing to launch an e-commerce sales option, “In an effort to provide a more tailored customer experience.”

Caliva and Hov opened their first Southern California storefront last year. Besides providing quality products, Hov aims to use his position at Caliva to help the formerly incarcerated (many of whom are not reaping the benefits of marijuana legalization) through advocacy, job training, and employee and workforce development.

According to the company website, Monogram uses “expert growers” to ensure that each marijuana flowers receives the “respect it deserves” in every stage of the growth process. Additionally, Monogram flowers are grown in small batches so that every plant gets “personalized attention.”

Continue Reading
Getty Images

Kehlani Plays Bryson Tiller’s Love Interest In “Always Forever” Video

Kehlani stars as Tiller’s love interest in the intimate new music video for “Always Forever,” released on Thursday (Oct. 22).

The stunning visual, directed by Glenn Michael of Toronto’s Kid Studio, is a creative take on how a relationship can become your entire universe. Tyler and Kehlani cuddle up, kiss, and hold hand in the steamy visual, prompting some fans to question the chemistry between the two. They might look pretty cozy, but Kehlani and Tiller are just friends (Tiller welcomed a child with girlfriend Kendra Bailey last year).


View this post on Instagram


🌎🎥💫Thanks Guys. #alwaysforever @kidstudio_ @ichiki @kehlani

A post shared by [ Bryson ] (@brysontiller) on Oct 22, 2020 at 12:35pm PDT

Kehlani shared some close-up stills from the music video on Instagram along with a message thanking Tiller for being a “solid” friend. “To one of my dearest friends…matching tattoos, years worth of stories, nights of dying laughter and holding each other down in the roughest times…I’m so proud of you. Thank you for being solid.”

The post was deleted after fans in the comments continued to speculate if the two were an item. Kehlani shared a follow-up message on her Instagram Story explaining in part, “I post lengthy captions about all my friends. You would have to follow me to know that.”


View this post on Instagram


#Roommates, #Kehlani explains her previous message to #BrysonTiller. (SWIPE for previous post)

A post shared by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on Oct 22, 2020 at 11:53am PDT

“Always Forever” is the latest single from Tiller’s newly released ANNIVERSARY LP.

Watch the video below.

Continue Reading

Top Stories