Dr. Dre recently revisited his heinous past as a woman beater; the best way you’d expect a man of his stature and profile to respond.
Through a statement funneled through The New York Times, the 50-year-old Hip-Hop legend “apologized” specifically to “the women” he had hurt, albeit not by name. The documented stories of the victims: journalist Dee Barnes; a former friend of the N.W.A leading up to Ice Cube’s departure from the group and ex-girlfriend and labelmate Michel’le, have since risen to the top of the news pile since the hit movie, Straight Outta Compton, erased them from coverage in an apparent bout of convenient amnesia.
Barnes, who has maintained she was “blackballed” from the industry since settling with Dre out of court in the early 90s, recently penned her second column with Gawker regarding the incident where she addresses his most recent apology.
“I have been routinely accused of ‘living in the past’ and of not letting this go, but it was Dr. Dre himself who was living in the past and couldn’t let it go so he created a permanent reminder of the ‘Dee Barnes incident,’ Barnes writes in reference to her name being mentioned in Eminem’s 1999 single, ‘Guilty Conscience,’ the first digital age allusion to the incident. “And Eminem is not the only one; there are numerous songs that mention the incident, enough that essentially turned me into a, uh, punchline. Of the women assaulted by Dre, I was the only one to press criminal charges against him. I’m also the only one whose name later came up in one of his songs. ‘Guilty Conscience’ and the other songs containing the reference are products of clear and obvious misogyny on a cultural level and for what? Jokes?”
While Barnes is sincere that she hopes Dre’s apology is as genuine as her forgiveness, she still plans on clearing the air in her developing memoir, Music, Myth, and Misogyny: Memoirs of a Female MC. Michel’le, on the other hand, wasn’t as accommodating with her response. In fact, she feels it was some sort of marketing ploy to get theaters packed and headphones sold.
“I didn’t ask for a public apology, and I think if he is going to apologize, he should do it individually,” she tells BBC Radio 5. “To just group us like we are nothing and nobody — I just don’t think it’s sincere. Treat us like we have names. He’s selling a movie. I just think it’s good PR at the moment.”
Which, opens up the floor to any solutions to the current situation that could be rooted in absolute. Does Dre need to become the face of domestic violence, where as he, a married man for going on 19 years, hasn’t shied away from such behavior. Even his latest release–the 16-year-album-drought-breaker Compton–doesn’t celebrate the misogyny and women swapping ethos that helped amass his fortune.
It’s a question only all parties involved in a private setting can sum up an answer.
Photos: La Niece, Rachel Worth/WENN, DJ Vlad