The city of Chicago has been in the news cycle a lot lately. Not to be outdone, R&B singer/song writer/producer/ Grammy Award winner R. Kelly while speaking at the Midwest Music Festival in Chicago recently came out of a trapped closet and shared with the world that he is illiterate.

Yes, not only does R. Kelly believe he can fly; he’s also unable to read:

“When I was trying to make it out here, I already knew, and I was stubborn about it,” he said. “I don’t even read really and I’m not afraid to say that. My cousins and brothers used to tease me ‘you can’t even read right. How you think you’re going to come up?’ The only reason I graduated from grammar school is because I had a great jump shot. I went to high school and [my teacher] told me ‘you will one of the greatest writers of all time.’ I believed. You [have to] believe it. You can’t believe [anything] if you’re hating. You can’t achieve [anything] if you’re hating.” [Source]Wow, so that explains why he never checked the ID of the then 14yr old with whom he had sex on tape. Oops, my bad, that wasn’t him; I forgot. Dammit R. Kelly! It’s bad enough that you’re forty something years old wearing a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle mask and cornrows, and now you tell us you can’t read?!! Now I don’t know if what was said above was the centerpiece of the message to the kids. But I’m kinda concerned that he chose to tell them to stop “hating” or else they won’t get anywhere in life. I’m surprised he never gave them the “stay in school,” or “learn to read,” message? Nope, none of that; just believe you can fly and you will only if you don’t hate on anybody. Oh yeah, and it also helps if you have a good jump shot; can’t forget that one. It’s a wonder he didn’t tell them to learn how to rap.

Somebody keep this fool away from kids.

Literacy in America is an often overlooked issue, and it is a major problem. Somehow, as damaged as R. Kelly’s image has become. As much as I hate to say it, nobody sees his deficiency as a tragedy; he peed on a 14yr old for crying out loud! From this day forth, nobody will ever remember that he’s unable to read. Instead, all we’ll remember is that he should be in prison for statutory rape. Which is really sad when you think about it, because there are a lot of kids in Chicago and across the country unable to read, and who never will be; children who will never be as financially successful as the Pied Piper of R&B.

QUESTION: Is illiteracy and incurable disease or educational malpractice?