Stop Comparing Cardi B to R. Kelly and Bill Cosby

cardi b stripper
credit: JStone/

An old Instagram live video of Cardi B saying she used to drug and rob men when she was a stripper has resurfaced.

In the video, she said,

“I had to go strip, I had to. ‘Oh yeah, you wanna f**k me? Yeah, yeah, yeah, let’s go back to this hotel.’ And I drugged n****s and robbed them. That’s what I used to do.”

When the video came back into public purview, Cardi took to her social media and confirmed that the old video (which you can watch below) was in fact real. She took the time to speak to her fans and publicly apologize for her actions.

“I never glorified the things I brought up in that [Instagram] live, I never even put those things in my music because I’m not proud of it and feel a responsibility not to glorify it. I made the choices that I did at the time because I had very limited options… The men I spoke about in my [Instagram] live were men that I dated. That I was involved with men that were conscious, willing, and aware.”

cardi b drugging men
Cardi’s full statement

Even with the apology, the story caused an uproar on social media.

As I watched reactions roll in, I noticed something very interesting. Most, if not all of the men who were outraged, were comparing the stories of Cardi B to those of Bill Cosby and R. Kelly. The irony of it all? That they expressed absolutely no outrage at the stories of Cosby and Kelly.

Specifically, these men only seemed concerned with Cosby and Kelly’s legacies and reputations — how they grew up on R. Kelly’s music, how the media was going after Cosby and trying to kill the positive image of a black man.

And I kept hearing the old argument that the women who accused them waited too long to come forward. As if that somehow invalidated their truth. Some even took up the hashtag #survivingCardiB, a mockery of the Lifetime documentary Surviving R. Kelly.

Let me get this out of the way now: I, in no way, shape or form, think what Cardi did was okay. But you’re reaching way too hard if you think you can sit there and compare Cardi to Bill Cosby or R. Kelly.

Cosby was accused of drugging and raping at least sixty women over the decades. And of course, we all know R. Kelly’s sexual abuse of underage girls, videos of child pornography, grooming, and the emotional trauma he caused young girls and women. These men also used their influence and fame to commit these crimes.

Cardi, on the other hand, did what she had to do to survive.

Again, I don’t agree with what she did, but I understand the struggle. And most importantly, unlike Cosby and Kelly, she owned up to what she did. She didn’t deflect, she didn’t stay silent. She took accountability for her past actions.

The reaction that men are currently having towards Cardi B and their lack of reaction towards Cosby and Kelly show that they don’t give a shit about women. If they did, they would have had the same energy with Kelly and Cosby.

I wish they can just admit their hypocrisy instead of getting so damn defensive when they get called out about it. But I think we all know that will never happen.


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Alysia Stevenson
Alysia Stevenson is a twenty-seven New York City transplant currently living in Florida with her boyfriend and three furbabies. When she's not writing, you can find her watching beauty tutorials on Youtube or Parks and Rec for the millionth time.