On 8th February 2009 at around 12.30am an argument between a couple; rapper Chris Brown and R&B star Rihanna, escalated into Brown lashing out at Rihanna, leaving her with visible facial injuries, for which she required hospitalisation.
The now 23 year old Chris Brown, was just 19 at the time of the incident, and has since been sentenced to five years of probation, one year of domestic violence counselling, 180 hours of community services and a restraining order to stay away from Rihanna. Apart from this punishment, he has been denied a visa to the UK to tour on the grounds of “being guilty of a serious criminal offence” and a recent promotional campaign for his 5th studio album Fortune which has been released this week, has been hijacked, and an image of this later went viral (below). In every article concerning Chris Brown, this sad event in his life is always brought up, and three years later it is still something which is in the news often, with just last week, the police officers who released the photo of Rihanna’s injuries being cleared of any wrong-doing.
Rihanna seems to have forgiven Brown as she appeared on a remix of ‘Birthday Cake’ with him, a track from her latest album Talk That Talk, which later reached 24 on the US Billboard 200 despite no official release. She also collaborated with him on a remix of his recent hit ‘Turn Up The Music’. In May, Cheryl Cole came out in support of Brown, stating that the public should “move on” from what happened, saying “I think because he’s in the limelight… he hasn’t had the chance to be forgiven or to forgive himself because we haven’t let him.” This week, even Rihanna’s own father said that he believes the pair “make the perfect couple“. So should we forgive him?
To make it clear, I do not support any type of domestic violence. What Chris Brown did is wrong, but as he has been punished, shouldn’t he be allowed to carry on with his life? In a world of intense personal intrusion for celebrities with more paparazzi and journalists than ever before, it seems to be difficult for Brown to shake this event away, however, in the past the music industry and the public have been quick to forgive artists who have been physically violent. Perhaps it is the world that we live in now where everyone knows everything about celebrities, but in the past, Keith Moon of The Who, and even John Lennon have committed domestic violence against their partners. In an interview in 1980, Lennon admitted “I used to be cruel to my woman, and physically—any woman. I was a hitter. I couldn’t express myself and I hit. I fought men and I hit women.” Despite the fact that the incident between Rihanna and Chris Brown was much more recent, it seems unfair to forgive certain artists, and not others.
So what do you think? Do you forgive him? Is it something that doesn’t concern you as it’s in his private life? Or do you just hate his music? Leave your opinion in the comments section below.