With age comes wisdom, or so it is said. Perhaps someone should impart this little axiom to R&B singer Chris Brown, who just went on a expletive-filled, sexist, sexually explicit campaign against a Twitter antagonist that labeled him “worthless.” And while they’re at it, maybe they should add a little flavoring of (paraphrased): When a child, I acted as a child, but when I became a man, I put behind me childish things. Because in all of Brown’s worldly travels and 23 years of experience, he still hasn’t gained enough wisdom to not engage in childish dialogue in public, perhaps due to hanging around clever lyric writers and becoming the victim of thinking himself a master of incisive repartee. But a war of words on Twitter with comedian Jenny Johnson? Hardly the arena for elevated discourse. Not that Brown seemed to even attempt elevating his level of discourse above pre-adolescence…
It began with Johnson, an Emmy-nominated producer and comic writer, making a comment about Brown after he posted a photo of himself and noted that he looked old. Johnson, who, according to Huffington Post, has been targeting Brown since the 2009 incident where he assaulted his former girlfriend Rihanna, retweeted his post and added that “Being a worthless piece of s*** can age a person.”
The “Don’t Judge Me” singer followed that with a sexually explicit suggestion of what Johnson could do to him orally, calling her a “HOE.”
To which she responded by calling him an “ignorant f***” and correcting his spelling.
And if you don’t believe it could get worse, believe it. The full Twitter feud was captured by BuzzFeed, a heated trail of back-and-forth tweets indicating unveiled animosity on both sides.
Oddly, Brown seems to find a solution to ending the battle of tweets by projecting that society is “immature” and that “b****** is crazy.” And apparently in answer to Johnson’s last statement that she had “zero respect” for someone that was remorseless and averse to changing his behavior, he wrote: “Just ask Rihanna if she mad??????”
Brown then deactivated his Twitter account, the online equivalent of taking his ball and going home.
But Brown’s remark that insinuates that his one-time (and perhaps current) girlfriend Rihanna isn’t mad at him any longer for the 2009 assault only adds fuel to a growing fire. Anti-domestic violence organizations and advocates will be quick to note that the abused have a high likelihood of returning to a relationship with their abuser. Simply because it has been a few years since the incident will not matter. That Brown and Rihanna both might claim to be older, wiser, different people than they were in 2009 won’t matter, either. Re-entering a relationship with a person with which one has had an abusive relationship often leads to more abuse, a settling into old familiar patterns, a psychological and emotional acceptance that there is (and was) nothing wrong with the relationship to begin with. It is a pattern of behavior that usually degenerates into mutually self-destructive behaviors and cyclical incidents of abuses, often of the physically and psychologically damaging varieties.
But whether or not Rihanna is wont to forgive Brown for his past actions, many others are not. Even though Brown was convicted of assault in 2009, he never served time in jail and was handed a suspended sentence and punished with mandatory community service and compulsory domestic violence education classes. And many, like Johnson, feel that Brown should have gone to prison, especially since he appears to shown no remorse for his actions.
In fact, according to the Associated Press, such was the ire of women’s rights groups and local politicians in Guyana that Brown canceled a scheduled stadium concert for December 26. Concert promoter Hits & Jams Entertainment stated Thursday (Nov. 22) that Brown was backing out of the concert over discomfort with the protests.
Chris Brown rose to fame in 2005 with a series of hits beginning with “Run It!,” an R&B chart-topper from his debut album. He was 16.
He and R&B singer Rihanna began dating in 2008, ending abruptly with his arrest in February 2009. Although rumors abound that the two have been surreptitiously meeting and/or dating, there has been no official corroboration that the singers have revived a relationship closer than one of renewed friendship. However, they have revived their professional relationship. Brown appears in a duet on Rihanna’s recently released album, ironically entitled Unapologetic.