Domestic Violence Is Never OK

Chris Brown won a Grammy this weekend. This is the man, who only 3 years ago, violently attacked his then-girlfriend Rihanna in a sustained ordeal that could have ended much worse had she not been able to remove and hide the keys from the ignition while he was trying to strangle her. How can an industry celebrate a man who is still serving probation for the violent assault right before the eyes of the victim? How can an industry that has far-reaching influence all over the world, to millions of people, forget the brutal and long-lasting damage this horrendous individual has bore to his victim? How can those awarding individuals sleep at night, knowing that they are condoning the actions of a convicted violent man in front of millions of impressionable people? How can a society ever rid itself of domestic violence when it is ignored by the people in the public eye?

Last week the police report detailing the events of the night Chris Brown violently attacked his girlfriend of a year and a half, Rihanna. The prolonged and sustained attack in which he repeatedly punched her, bit her, strangled her and threatened to kill her. The reading of the police report is harrowing and sickening.

In the resulting prosecution Chris Brown received just 5 years probation. Barely a slap on the wrist.

This is not an isolated case, albeit a rather high profile case of domestic violence. Every day, all over the world similar attacks on women by their partners go unreported, go unpunished, and sometimes the result is fatal. In the UK, at least 2 women die every week at the hands of their partner.

Domestic violence is very real, it is very dangerous and the effects last a lifetime. Domestic violence is all too common, and when we live in a society that fails to protect the victims and allows the perpetrators to live freeĀ  from guilt or consequence, we are unlikely to be free from it anytime soon. Nor are we likely to see any kind of decline in this crime.

Violence is never ok. I don’t care how sorry Chris Brown is, he should never have carried out such a vicious attack on a women he supposedly loved. A man like Chris Brown does not deserve success or fame. He does not deserve second chances, because no matter how sorry he tells the world, his victim will have to live the scars of his attack for the rest of her life. There is no 5 years probabtion on the emotional and mental damage she has suffered.

There are mistakes and then there is violence. We all know right from wrong, and as an adult you are ultimately responsible for your actions.

As a society we need to collectively stand up and say no to domestic violence. We need to speak out against it. We need to support the victims. We need domestic violence to become an unthinkable crime.

Domestic violence should never be the norm.

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Red magazine have a Speak Up, Save a Life petition. They need 100,000 signatures, and they have just over 5000 so far.

  1. One of the most disturbing things I have seen recently is a website which covered some of the tweeting during his performance of women saying that they would love to be beaten up by him. It made me feel completely sick. I don’t understand how the music industry can just pretend that it never happened – there was such a brief pause while people considered whether they should support him or not, and it seems they decided that what he did was okay. It really does make me very angry!

  2. Well put, Elizabeth. What I find the most sickening is the way in which there has been a collusion to forget what Chris Brown did. The organisers of the Grammies should not have invited him back – he is still on probation, for one thing – having him at the event is basically celebrating the three year anniversary of him hospitalising his girlfriend. The Grammy organiser, Ken Ehrlich, claims that they, the Grammies were “the victim of what happened”! As Sasha Paluska pointed out in her recent post on Hello Giggles, when Usher criticised Brown’s lack of remorse mere weeks after the attack, he was forced to publically apologise! This tells me something about how far we have still to come as a society – that women are still deemed so worthless that a man can beat his girlfriend half to death and then be feted and lauded a mere three years later. It is sickening.

  3. I agree, it is NEVER okay. That police report made me feel sick to the core. My mother suffered domestic violence for almost ten years at the hands of my father. Despite them parting ways 20 years ago she is still deeply traumatised by what happened to her and it has really knocked the way she values herself. I could go on and on…

    I’m disgusted by the acceptance of Chris Brown back into the entertainment industry to parade around as though nothing happened.

    1. I’m so sorry to hear your Mother went through that. It’s not the first time I have heard how profound and long-lasting the effects of such violence are.

  4. He is a most unpleasant seeming individual, but not the first in the public eye to get away with this kind of thing. So many Hollywood types have been reported for domestic violence issues, usually just leads to another divorce, a few lines in the papers and continuing to get big roles and bigger pay checks. A bit like the refusal of so many in the industry to condemn the disgusting behaviour of Roman Polanski, just because he’s an acclaimed director. Great post.

    1. I keep thinking that about Roman Polanski – why is there not more outrage that he had sex with an underage girl?! Even if it was years ago, it is abhorrent.

  5. Horrid. It makes me cold to think of Chris Brown pleased as punch with himself, sitting in his hotel after the awards believing that he’s paid his debt.

    Have signed the Red petition too.

    Claire

  6. I am sorry to say I feel like this, but every time I see that man on the tv screen I feel disgust. Every time I hear one of his songs played on the radio, I feel such disappointment. However, I also felt the same way when I heard that S&M song by Rihanna, she was sending out such a wrong message, and a sad one at that. I really don’t get how anyone can admire a guy that will beat a woman, I don’t get how anyone can be a fan of his music… I really don’t get it. The fact that he was even given an award makes it all a big bad joke.

    1. I turn the tv or radio off if he comes on. But saying that, I turn Rihanna’s music off too. I’m really sad to see the direction she has taken artistically – there seems to be a lot of play on sex and violence in her work. It’s so sad.

    1. I think there are many who haven’t forgotten. But it doesn’t help if the music and media industry do little to hold people like this to account.

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