Don’t be fooled by the baby blue v-neck sweater, baby blue bow tie with the white polka dots and the baby face that looks as smooth as a baby’s bottom. No, this is not some contemporary Buster Brown, or some variation on a harmless Steve Urkel. What you see before you is a serial domestic abuser who is in denial. Flanked by his mama on one side and a high priced criminal attorney on the other side as he tries to spin the facts after being found guilty of felony assault in a plea bargain agreement reached last month.
As reported by Victoria Kim in the Los Angeles Times, Christopher Maurice Brown has established a pattern of serial abuse:
Chris Brown was involved in two unreported incidents “related to domestic violence” before the February encounter that left his pop-star girlfriend Rihanna bruised and bleeding, according to a probation officer’s report filed with the court for the singer’s sentencing.
The first of those incidents occurred in Europe about three months earlier, when Brown and Rihanna were in a “verbal dispute,” the report said. She slapped him, and Brown responded by shoving her into a wall, the report stated.
Just three weeks before the February incident, Brown and Rihanna were in Barbados, driving a Range Rover lent them by a local dealership, when they had an argument in the car. Brown got out and broke both the driver’s and front passenger side windows, according to the report. No one was injured. The vehicle was repaired, and the incident went unreported to authorities.
Brown was sentenced to five years of probation, one year of domestic violence counseling and 180 days of community labor, in addition to being subject to an order of protection, to keep him away from his victim.
While Brown would have the public believe that he is contrite and sorry about what happened to his victim he is only going through the motions, the only thing that he is sorry about, is the damage to his entertainment career that has been engendered by his behavior, by the potential loss in revenue to him, his handlers, his employers, his sponsors. In an interview on Larry King Live, one of the statements Brown made to Larry King when asked what he thought when he was seeing the (infamous) police evidence photos months after the incident was:
Wow, I can’t believe it actually happened, it really like took a toll on me.
This statement is a real clue in to the character of Chris Brown and his honesty with himself. He can’t believe it happened, when it was all but inevitable to happen based upon his unaccounted past behavior. It took a toll on him, as if it has not taken a toll on his victim and her family, or on his own family? He is not the victim here and it is galling that he would even imply that he has been harmed in some way.
View the video of his Larry King Live appearance, after first reading the article titled “The Dynamics of Domestic Abuse” by Douglas R. Marvin in the FBI’s July 1997 edition of Law Enforcement Bulletin and see what parallels you find with Brown, Rihanna and the long established academic and practical knowledge of domestic abusers and their victims.
What is the best thing that can happen to Chris Brown? The answer is easy, he and his family should seek real and continuing counsel for his aberrant behavior, he should forget his entertainment career, go to college and get an education, and then do something that gives back to the community that provided him with opportunity and fortune. He could give back by becoming a teacher or maybe a health or social service professional or producing or delivering a service that is beneficial to the daily lives of other members of the community. Instead of giving lip service on Larry King Live about wanting to do something more significant than street sweeping during his community labor, he can do something that indicates that he really has changed his behavior, something that he can be proud instead of ashamed of, as a real inspiration and role model for young people, and a real contributor to society, instead of just another over exposed, over paid entertainer.
As it stands, I don’t buy the contrite baby blue bow tied boy I saw in the video. That is just smoke and mirrors, I want to see solid, long term evidence that he has rehabilitated his character.