MESSAGE!

I waited a long time to post up anything about this Chris Brown/Rihanna (Robyn Fenty) situation. I was pretty sure that I wouldn’t post anything about it at all on my blog but you know, hard to get away from.

I’ve tried to stay out of conversations because people talking about shit they don’t know about infuriates me to no end. There are so many commonly held misconceptions about the realities of domestic violence that it not only makes me angry, it makes me sad and a little afraid. Therefore I have spoken very little about CB/RF. I’m still not going to go into it because I feel like there’s too much to say as the problem is bigger than those two individuals. Plus I don’t want to make myself upset. So I’m just going to post this recent press release from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Let them make it clear and succinct for you:

The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence Stands With Rihanna:

“She is not responsible for the violence perpetrated against her.”

Washington, DC — When singer Chris Brown reportedly assaulted his girlfriend, fellow singer Rihanna, following an argument on Sunday, February 8th, there was an immediate public outcry of support for Rihanna.

Visibly battered and bruised, Rihanna has joined the ranks of millions of women, becoming part of a horrifying statistic of 1 in 4 women who will be beaten by their intimate partners during their lifetimes.[1]

By Wednesday, February 11th, however, the tune had changed. With new information alleging that Rihanna had begun the argument herself, public support began to waver. Some implied, and others firmly stated, that because Rihanna may have started the argument, she deserved the subsequent abuse she suffered. Now as stories circulate about the couple’s reunion, support for Rihanna seems to be waning even more.

This is unacceptable.

The idea that someone “deserves” to be beaten is intolerable and appalling. Choosing to use violence in response to conflict—and we emphasize that violence is a choice—is the sole responsibility of the abuser. Regardless of the circumstances or other factors of the situation, violence and abuse is never an acceptable response. Rihanna, or any other victim of violence, is not responsible for the violence perpetrated against them, plain and simple.

Rihanna’s rumored reunion with Chris Brown does not in any way mean she “wants to be abused.” Reasons for staying in or returning to an abusive relationship are more complex than a statement about the victim’s strength of character. For most of us, the decision to end a relationship is one of the most difficult we will ever make. A battered woman’s emotional ties to her partner may still be strong, supporting her hope that the violence will end.[2] Also, it is extremely common for battered women to return to their abuser multiple times before she leaves for good. Gaining strength, relinquishing hope, or letting go of someone we love is very hard and takes time even when violence is not present. Supporting victims of domestic violence in their process and understanding the dynamics of domestic violence is vital to their success and survival. To learn more about domestic violence, please visit these links:

Domestic Violence Facts
Why Doesn’t She Just Leave?
Men and Domestic Violence

We hope that Rihanna finds the resources she needs to heal and regain her sense of security and self and encourage everyone to support her in her process. We also hope that Chris Brown is held accountable for his actions and receives support to learn alternatives to violence as a way to deal with conflict in his life.

[...]

[1] Tjaden, Patricia & Thoennes, Nancy. National Institute of Justice and the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, Extent, Nature and Consequences of Intimate Partner Violence: Findings from the National Violence Against Women Survey, (2000).

[2] What You Should Know About Domestic Violence. Retrieved March 4, 2009, from http://www.caring-unlimited.org/what-you-should-know.html

Oh, and please quit using “Chris Brown” or any derivative of his name as a euphemism for beating anyone up or the like. It’s stupid and diminishes the gravity of the situation. kthxbye.

  • http://ihsanamin.wordpress.com ihsanamin

    It’s a sad story, but I’m tired of reading about it/seeing it everywhere.

    It does bring DV issues to attention on a nationwide scale, and say think that’s probably the only benefit out of all this.

    Brown was wrong in what he did, but he went from good guy to villain overnight, and I don’t think it’s entirely fair.

    Also, making light of it is not funny at all. (Chris Brown-ing someone, etc…)

    That’s just my take on it all.