Gayle King impressively kept her cool during her sit-down with the disgraced R. Kelly to address the allegations of sexual relationships with underage girls over the past two decades. In order for the two to have the interview, King had to agree to not bring up Kelly’s marriage to singer Aaliyah when she was 15-years-old and she was 27-years-old.
“They didn’t want any questions about Aaliyah, which I was fine with. I feel we have heard the Aaliyah story,” King told The New York Times. “Really, this interview was about R. Kelly’s reaction to the Surviving R. Kelly documentary and the latest charges, and they said he cannot discuss the latest charges because those are still in court. O.K., fine. I still feel we had a lot of information to get from R. Kelly.”
Even without discussing what we already know about Aaliyah, Kelly still had a lot to address. In between his tears and outbursts, he continued to maintain his innocence despite the fact that women and girls that do not know each other have similar stories that span over more than 20 years.
King also sat down with his two live-in girlfriends, Azriel Clary and Joycelyn Savage, who also continued to deny that they are being held against their will, which both of their families have been telling the media. King said she feels that the two women, who are both under 25, will realize the error of their ways in the future.
“I just thought, you girls have no idea. I think one day they’re going to look back on this and go, what the hell was I thinking? At the end of the day, you’re going to need your family. I believe your family is going to be there long after R. Kelly is not. Because we don’t know how the R. Kelly story is going to end.”
The CBS anchor also addressed Clary’s hostile delivery during the interview and said what helped her keep her cool was that she didn’t want to reciprocate that same harsh delivery.
“What I wanted to say — but I didn’t want to get snippy with her the way that she got snippy with me— was, “Listen, listen, little girl, you don’t even know what you’re saying right now,” she told TIME. “And one of these days you’re going to regret this moment. You’re going to regret this moment, you’re going to regret this time in your life.” But I saw no point in chastising her or, as the young children say, breaking bad with her the way she did with me. I also wanted to say, “Yes, but I am not dating R. Kelly, who is perceived to be a child predator. That’s the difference, and that’s why this is a valid question. Because you’re sitting here at the age of 21 with this guy who is older than your father.” But I decided there’s no point in doing that.
As for R. Kelly and his 10 charges of criminal sexual abuse against four women, he is due back in court March 22nd.