The Chris Brown Interview on Larry King Live

This evening I went out for dinner and drinks with my husband and, when we returned home, I decided to take some time out to finally watch the Chris Brown Interview on Larry King Live that everyone has been talking about all week. (Yes, I know I am a little late.) My husband took some time out to catch up on U.S. Open news so it was a perfect time for me to watch the full interview.
Chris Brown is of particular interest to me because I hear about him on a regular basis from my students being that I am a Middle School teacher. Additionally, I have always thought that he was, and is, a truly talented individual and was as shocked and disappointed as everyone else when this scandal with Rihanna first hit the airwaves. So I watched the interview and I would like to share some of my thoughts on some of his responses and just how the overall exchange was conducted.
Let me begin by stating that it was no surprise that he was being accompanied by his mother and his lawyer in light of the severity of the charges that were brought against him and for moral support probably. I’m sure we all agree that beating a woman to a bloody pulp is unacceptable and that he should be held accountable for suffering the consequences of his actions just like any other individual should be. He should be made an example of along with all other men who abuse women and not exclusively because he is a star. I completely disagree with the judge who has ordered him to comply with endless hours of hard labor as part of his probation agreement. As an educator, I believe that his probation time and his community service component would be better spent working with violent teens or mentoring at-risk young men. Young people are more inclined to take advice from a famous pop figure that they idolize than “average Joe counselors.”
The next thing that concerns me, as a mother, is that I really did not get the impression, from listening to his mother, that she has fully relayed to him her disappointment in him for his actions. Don’t get me wrong, I love my sons to the end of the earth and would do anything for them, however, as mothers, we have to teach our children that there are consequences to engaging in violent behavior against others. Obviously, Chris Brown got the message sometime during his life that engaging in violence against women is a normal part of life. According to his mother, her husband was abusive to her and this exposed Chris to this type of behavior. So I guess this is the excuse for what he did…This really doesn’t fly with me because many of us have witnessed or experienced violence at some point in our lives and we did not use this as a license to go around beating others.
Lastly, I’m not even sure if he is really sorry for what he did. Maybe he is more sorry that his career, once a promising one, is in dire straits for obvious reasons. I don’t agree that he should be ostracized by the entertainment industry and kept from pursuing his career for what he did because these would be the actions of a truly hypocritical society. He wasn’t the first and, he definitely won’t be the last public figure to do something wrong or illegal and at least he has the excuse that he is young and immature which is something others cannot use as an excuse. Hopefully, with some guidance, therapy, and support he will come out of this a better man. He screwed up and made a big mistake but who are we to pass judgment?

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