The news about Chris Brown's alleged assault on girlfriend Rihanna has clearly touched a nerve with the public. Judging from the hundreds of comments readers left on our story about why some people are blaming Rihanna for the alleged incident and another about reports that this isn't the first time the couple's relationship has allegedly gotten physical, whatever happened last Sunday morning, you want to talk about it.
(MTV will air "Chris Brown & Rihanna: Love in Trouble" — an in-depth look at the allegations of domestic violence that Brown faces, featuring journalists, industry professionals and an in-studio audience of young fans — on Monday, February 16, at 6 p.m. ET/PT.)
The range of emotions runs the gamut, from those agreeing that Rihanna should not be made a scapegoat in this saga, to others begging for a story about how, "media commonly condemns celebs before all the facts are out or before they have been convicted." Brown, 19, turned himself in and was booked on suspicion of making criminal threats in the incident, though the District Attorney's office kicked the case back to the police on Wednesday asking for more evidence.
Commenters in the MTV community have written were some disturbing, profanity-laced attacks on Rihanna and others targeting Brown. Then there were some like JoyinSF, who wrote, "You can stand behind an artist because of their music, but you cannot stand beyond bad decisions that hurt other people. There are men who are abused by their girlfriends and wives too, but still, both ways, abuse is wrong and I'm glad we can finally shed light on an issue that so many women around the world suffer in silence. No one deserves abuse and they did not bring it upon themselves."
Others raised speculation that there is more to the story than we know. ThusSpoke who got into a heated exchange with some other posters and suggested, "You see it all the time TV and in the movies ... women slapping, kicking, pushing men like they have a license or some sort of special privilege to do so without repercussion. While it is accepted as not politically correct to hit a woman, people seem to not find particular exception to men being physically assaulted be women. Double standard? I am always offended by any abuse towards either sex. Equality of the sexes works both ways. How do we know she is not the one that attacked him and he simply protected himself? Perhaps he is the victim."
Neither Brown nor Rihanna has made a public statement to date and their spokespeople have not returned multiple requests for comment.
A number of comments were pleading with fans and the media to wait until the facts come out. "Maybe EVERYONE should stop speculating and wait until one of the two come out publicly and explain what happened," noneofyourbusiness2 wrote. Others had more selfish reasons for hoping both singers are OK and make it through this difficult time. "In all honesty! I'm prayin for both of them cuz NOBODY knows what really went down!," said Courtneee. "I'm more worried bout the MUSIC than anything else."
There were readers who questioned the many tabloid news sources that are primarily driving the story. "I don't think TMZ has any real 'sources' they're just saying that to make it 'legal,' " wrote DKFAN. Others said the chain of events as portrayed in tabloid tales simply doesn't make sense. "If you're in a car, how can you hit someone while you're driving and not run into something?" Mz. Dixon asked.
Some fans are mad at the radio stations that have banned Brown's music. "They don't even know what really happened that is so childish and doesn't make sense so darn stupid," wrote anonymous. "We should all stop listening to the radio stations or TV channels that does this all together ... this is his personal life it's not suppose to have anything to do with it business wise."
Another anonymous poster, who claimed to be from a home where there was domestic violence, begged for the media to stop bringing up the interviews in which Brown has talked about the alleged domestic abuse he saw his mother endure when he was a child. "That has nothing to do with anything that happened between them," "anonymous" wrote. "It is so annoying, coming from a home of domestic violence does not define who you will turn out to be ... there are people who come from violent homes and they turn out to be very good people and vice versa there are people who come from very good homes and now are criminals so what is the point you guys are trying to make?? This has nothing to do with the situation whatsoever."
While few could agree on how they felt about the issue, a majority did second the words of Chiquita, who wrote, "No woman ever deserves to be hit. Shame on any of you for thinking you can justify abuse. If he felt he was treated wrongly, there were plenty of other options than hitting."
"Chris Brown & Rihanna: Love in Trouble" airs Monday, February 16, at 6 p.m. ET/PT on MTV.
Get resources and information about domestic violence, or check out [url id="http://think.mtv.com/044FDFFFF0098989A00170098A1E8/"]Think MTV[/url] for a video handbook on spotting the warning signs of abuse.