No, I am not betraying sisterhood when I say I am excited about the prospect of Rihanna reuniting with her ex-boyfriend Chris Brown. When news broke this week that RiRi had made two new songs with Brown,
who was charged with assaulting Rihanna in 2009, people went crazy in the media and on Twitter, denouncing her as a poor role model and a pathetic example of womanhood.
Rihanna's edgy videos and songs clearly reveal she likes to live on the wild side where there are few rules and she can do whatever she wants. One only has to follow her Twitter, which is frequently updated with seemingly drunken tweets filled with expletives, to see that she is a raw , irreverant soul. She doesn't care about being society's precious proper Barbie. She has the guts to follow her instincts even if it infuriates everyone else. I don't want her to be harmed, but to me she is NOT dealing with a serial criminal here.
I recall when Chris Brown came on the music scene when he was just 16 years old, singing "Run it." He was a smiley, clean-cut kid who loved to talk about his mama. He was nobody's threat. He wasn't some street thug. He wasn't a criminal. He hadn't sold drugs. He was a just a good kid with a good voice and crazy dance moves.
In a music industry where former drug dealers and gangsters get forgiven and invited to the White House and on Oprah, I find it nauseating that there is no forgiveness for Chris, who committed a horrible abuse of power while a teen healing from days of seeing his own mother beaten by her husband. Should he be labeled and shunned for life or should we see if his counseling and anger management reformed him? The latter would be a better example to show the world.
The reality is there are some love bonds that are explosive and heady, filled with too much adrenaline, jealousy and obsession. Sometimes, that love can be the greatest and the most reckless. So, Rihanna, I understand the attraction.
To me, Rihanna set the greatest example by following through with prosecution and by giving Chris a chance to prove he's a new man, after three years of exemplary behavior. She didn't let him off the hook. She took the matter through the justic system and even got a restraining order against him. Give her some credit. Maybe, just maybe, she believes people can overcome their demons.
I believe in reform. That's a good message to send. I believe people are not just their bad moments. I'm glad Rihanna is showing the world she's willing to grant second chances to someone who has earned it.
Until he's a serial abuser (which I hope is never), I'm not ready to write Chris Brown off as a lost cause. He's too young and he has too much potential. Be honest. We all have had Jekyll and Hyde moments, but most of us haven't had TV cameras and media to sensationalize them for life.