Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Chris Brown's side of the story doesn't matter. Here's why.

Sometimes I feel like I'm living in a bazaaro version of reality when I listen to the news. I felt that way when President Bush would talk about WMDs in Iraq or how stem cell transplants were immoral.

This alternative universe seems to continue as the Chris Brown and Rihanna saga continues with the couple reportedly spotted together.

Who knows what's true in these reports? They could be halfway around the world from each other. However, what's most disturbing is the lack of absolute condemnation of the violence.

It is appropriate, usually, to look at situations analytically. To understand both sides. To see different points of views.

However, this methodology does not work universally and can lead to moral and ethical paralysis as it has in the response to Chris Brown alleged violence against Rihanna.

The music community and the entertainment industry must emphatically condemn domestic violence, and condemn it now.

"Everyone makes mistakes" just doesn't cut it in this situation. His act was intolerable and although every effort should be made to get him psychological help and keep her safe from him (and herself), excuses are meaningless. They are basically two young people barely in their 20s (with a lot of money) enmeshed in a dysfunctional relationship. There are people in the music community who have much power and resources to help motivate these two to move forward with their lives without each other and without the abuse while inspiring others in their situation to do the same.

How can this situation and the lack of outrage (think about it has there been outrage or curiosity) not affect young people and their views on violence in relationships?

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, "Females ages 20 to 24 were at the greatest risk of nonfatal intimate partner violence."

Instead of focusing on learning Chris Brown's side of the story, why not use this as a chance to empower young men and women to understand that violence in relationships is never an answer and offer them resources to prevent attacks.

Such resources can be found at http://www.ndvh.org/


Norman said...

Totally on-target!

If you're in an abusive relationship, get help and get out.

And, we can all help support people who are trying to get that help.

One organization that has made a strong impact is A Window Between Worlds (http://awbw.org/)--they use art to help empower those who have suffered.

dirk said...

I think part of what's going on is White Guilt. If a celebrity Black male is violent, they don't want to condemn him or make a big to do about it since readers might get the idea that Black men are violent. It just happens that Black men do commit murders, rapes, robberies, muggings and burglaries all grossly out of proportion to their numbers, and I think the mainstream press is doing us all a dangerous disservice, again. And in a preemptive note: 1) I am not the problem, nor do I commit or cause violent crime 2) The facts may make you uncomfortable but they are stubborn things, and 3) Don't shooot the messenger, etc.

dirk said...

I withdraw the above comment.

Anonymous said...

It is difficult, if not impossible, for Chris Brown to explain Rihanna's injuries without admitting guilt.

But please don't assume every domestic violence arrestee is guilty. In almost every state, a woman can have her partner/spouse arrested simply by calling police and saying, "He hit me." She needs no evidence. Responding officers are not permitted to take their own discretion into account regarding whether to make the arrest. They must arrest and book the man. So I would agree that Brown has nothing to say. But in light of the way the law is set up in favor of the woman--even a liar with a motive--please don't make assumptions in every case. This happened to me.