With the recent collaboration of Rihanna and Chris Brown on Rihanna’s new single ‘Birthday,’ and his ‘Turn up the Volume,’ rumors have been rampant that the duo may be doing more than just mixing business interests or so perhaps they might wish the public to believe. After all nothing seems to sell these days than perceived aggrieved behavior in so much that it gets the public talking about you and ultimately buying into the latest offerings. Where one may have once kept such behavior secret it seems flaunting it has become the new clever way to market oneself especially if you already have a flotilla of 24/7 media outlets watching your every move (of course let’s not be stupid and forget that recording studios that produce the music are often owned and run by the same outlets that own the media outlets….hello people!).
Yet despite the two entertainers participating in what may be on the surface a very ingenuous plan the danger now lies that the public may not necessarily buy into the latest hoopla (point in case- Casey Anthony who has not been able to get a book deal) and may begin wondering if their collective sensibilities have been so violated that they can’t get over the shock factor and may instead choose to condemn the entertainers. After all a painting or a film or a record for that matter can never exist if there is no one on the other end there to partake in the creative effort.
To date in fact some fans have even come out supporting the latest efforts of the duo, with some fans having twitted what may be very unbelievable to sane ears the following: “chris brown can punch me whenever he wants!”
For those offended (and rightly so many would argue) that this duo has re united off the back of physical abuse that Rihanna endured at the expense of her once (and maybe once again reunited) lover comes the following concern:
“The message that they are sending is that abusive men have changed when they say they are better,” says Norman Quantz, an Alberta therapist and author of It’s All About Power and Control. “And that’s a lie believed by many women.”
It seems if one is to believe most media outlets, Rihanna by normalizing relations with Chris Brown has ostensibly sent a message that domestic violence is okay, but that may be further from the truth when in reality these two entertainers live distinct lives and have not sought to be romantically involved with each other again. It just may well be that Rihanna has gotten over the incident of 3 years ago and is simply forging a high profile collaboration that both her and Chris Brown are aware will keep them in the public eye which isn’t necessarily a bad thing when you’re in the business of selling your public image.
What though is interesting is the high benchmark we have placed on Rihanna to play moral ideals when perhaps it might be more useful to look within ourselves instead.