On a recent episode of State of The Culture, rapper Remy Ma sparked controversy after she made highly irresponsible and damaging comments regarding sexual assault victims receiving financial settlements from their reported abusers.
The group was engulfed in a discussion regarding form NFL player Antonio Brown who in the last few weeks has faced two separate accusations of sexual assault. Brown reportedly rejected a $2 million settlement from his first accuser, Brittney Taylor, who offered the agreement before she filed in court against him.
TNHT Intern: @yesthatsdee _____________________________________________ #Neighbors, in a recent episode of #StateOfTheCulture, #RemyMa shared her thoughts on the recent allegations against former NFL wide receiver #AntonioBrown _____________________________________________ Brown, who has been accused of sexual assault, ironically during the same time of his departure from the Oakland Raiders, has been the subject of many headlines after he was released from the New England Patriots last week. _____________________________________________ While Remy was sure not to discredit the alleged victims, she couldn’t fathom why a woman who is raped would seek monetary compensation. _____________________________________________ “If you rape me I don’t want your money…the things I want done to you are crimes.” #EboniK quickly chimed in, stating that monetary compensation may help some women afford therapy, back-pay in missed days of work, amongst other things. _____________________________________________ While the two agreed to disagree, we have to know, #Neighbors what are your thoughts?
A post shared by The Neighborhood Talk, LLC (@theneighborhoodtalk) on Sep 26, 2019 at 10:20am PDT
Remy’s started off understandably expressing the anger a person would feel if they found out a loved one was sexually assaulted.
“If you raped my sister, my daughter my—I don’t want your money,” she began. “The things that I want done are crimes.”
“Worse case scenario I want something to happen to you where you’re removed to where you’re unable to do this to someone else. Don’t come to me with a number to where…”
Her co-host Eboni K. Williams interrupted Remy to explain that as a result, some victims of sexual violence are unable to seek justice in criminal court because many rape cases are backlogged and the amount of time it takes to go to trial, if it even makes it to that point, can be long withstanding. Also sexual assault survivors are oftentimes unable to work and sustain wellness because of their mental anguish, and a monetary compensation could help offset that.
But still Remy carried on.
“My thing is just this, and it seems like a lot of these alleged sexual assault cases, the women are asking for money, ‘Hey give me some money and I’ll feel better.’ To me in any exchange with sexual acts being compensated with money, like that’s prostitution,” she said.
Remy’s words here are violent in a three-fold manner. One, it seeks to again discount the victim by dismissing their experience and the tools they chose to seek in order to receive some form of justice or retribution. Secondly, it conflates the trauma of sexual violence with sex work, which is a separate and wholly different topic if consent was given. Which means that while sex workers do also experience sexual assault, it becomes a different sermon if someone has given their full consent in return for monetary payment. Thirdly, it polices women in regards to what they do with their bodies, especially after the loss of autonomy due to sexual assault.
The other hosts chimed in to make Remy aware of her faux pas, but it seemed she is well-vested in her statements.
This is the third time Remy has made neglectful comments in regards to victims sexual assault. During the first season of SOTC, she caught hell after claiming sexual assault victims have a responsibility to speak out within a certain time frame after they have been violated. She also made comments which placed the blame on the women who came forward to accuse singer R. Kelly of sexual misconduct and violence.
Too often we see celebrities take a public stance on issues where they are not well-versed. We saw it when Kanye West argued that slavery was a choice. We saw it in April when Jay-Z’s well-meaning Nipsey Hussle freestyle featured a gross misunderstanding of gentrification.
It would really behove Remy to immerse herself in learning about sexual violence, sexual assault or even wholeheartedly listening to victims who have experienced it firsthand. It also shows that she possibly harbors misogny which can only be healed through therapy and self-reflection.
As a lead female authority on a show which seeks to uplift the culture, Remy is failing in her responsibility to do just that.