Chris Brown’s behavior always comes back to bite him, no matter how many steps he takes forward one mistake brings back memories of his assault on Rihanna. The latest outburst came after a comedian taunted him on Twitter. Even though she instigated the situation his inability to keep his emotions at bay resulted in the 23-year-old deleting his page, followed by yet another public backlash.
Brown is far from the only notable to physically assault a woman (Charlie Sheen, Ike Turner, Flavor Flav, Norman Mailer, all come to mind), but his is a story that the public can’t seem to let go of, leading some to believe that race is the elephant in the room. After the assault Brown, who is a singer, was called a rapper—long before he tested his rhyming skills on “Look at Me Now” —making for a thinly veiled comparison between Hip-Hop music and abuse, further embedding the notion that those belonging to the culture support misogyny, violence, and everything in between.
Gawker.com jumped head first into the theory that the Virginia native is being unfairly targeted for his abusive past based on the color of his skin. According to the site, it’s the fact that a photo of Rihanna’s beaten and bruised face is still burned into our memories, and Brown’s unwillingness to shift our assumptions in a more positive direction (by doing things like destroying a dressing room at Good Morning America, and his ill-received Halloween costume choice) that are his biggest obstacles:
“Reporting on Chris Brown’s brutality tour as if he’s the totem for all domestic abusers is hard not to do when, for a variety of reasons, Chris Brown is almost certainly the most famous domestic abuser of all time. It is not insidious or racist to acknowledge his crimes, nor is it racist to talk about Brown’s abuses more often than we talk about those of less famous white men accused of the same thing. But looking at the relish with which some people seem to hurl abuse at Brown, or at his fans’ lack of educations and use of street slang, it’s hard not to see at least some prejudice there. There are a lot of people in this world who deserve to be called dumb assholes; why does everyone get such a kick out of doing it to Brown?”
Surely Brown must take responsibility for bot his actions and public image. But is the Rihanna beating being held over his head because he’s a Black man?
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Photo: The Gaurdian