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Another Post About Chris Brown

There has been a lot of conversation happening about Chris Brown lately (I’m sure you’re sick of reading it, so I”ll try to be brief), and specifically about his re-acceptance into the music community. There has been a lot of talk about the effects of this on young people, and the message it is sending to them. I see the victim blaming and smoothing over of the issue as deeply problematic, don’t get me wrong, but I haven’t seen this issue being framed in the feminist blogosphere in the way that I find it the most troubling.

The other day, I walked into my job at a domestic violence shelter to find an issue of US Weekly sitting on the counter. Now, I don’t normally pay any attention to these kinds of things, but Sundays are unusually slow days. On the cover, there was a headline about Chris Brown and Rihanna.

“Back With Her Abuser: Rihanna’s Secret Affair With Chris.” (You can read it here)

This article doesn’t once blame Rihanna for the abuse, question whether or not it happened, or say that Chris Brown is being judged too harshly. Instead, this article does something much more sinister: it makes Rihanna’s relationship with Chris Brown seem illicit and exciting. The way this article portrays the pair is as people so extremely attracted to one another they can’t stay away. According to US Weekly, even though Chris Brown has hurt her, even though it ...