I don't want to go into all of the background drama on Kehlani. Honestly, I'm pissed at how she's being treated — at how her treatment is a symptom of a larger issue.
Many men hate women. I'm not making this out to be solely a people-of-color issue, because it's not. It's not just a black issue. White men hate women with the same words as Latino, black, and Asian men. There isn't a specific type of man who hates women. There are many.
What am I trying to say here? Well, Chris Brown needs to shut his mouth, and so do other men who are afraid of women. The same men who hate women are afraid of them.
Kehlani attempted suicide. I sincerely hope that she isn't thinking about what so many men are saying about her. I want her to be able to heal. I want her to know that there is so much power within her, power that cannot be taken away no matter how many times a man calls her "damaged goods" or a ho.
There's always been misogyny in the music industry, especially from a lot of the artists we listen to. Right now, though, I'm furious. No amount of talent could excuse the fact that Chris Brown hates women. He does.
I could tell when he beat Rihanna. I could tell when he said that "hos ain't loyal." I could tell when he tweeted about Kehlani's personal life, which he knows nothing about. I could tell when he said she attempted suicide for attention.
Men like Chris Brown call women hos because that's the best they can do to control them. They expect women to be doormats. They want to have sex with lots of women, but if the women have sex with other men, they are hos. If a woman is in control of her sexuality, she's a ho. If she calls a man out on his foolishness, she's a ho.
When you compare that word to the power that a woman holds, it's virtually nothing. But it's all that these women-hating men have. That's why they keep using it. Words like "thot" and "ho" are cheap. They offer a false sense of protection.
How scary it must be to know that shaming women isn't working as well as it used to. On Twitter, there were many men agreeing with Brown — even some women. But I also saw many who condemned him.
Brown, and other men like him, are cowards. Only a coward would toss a cheap punch against a top-notch player.
Cowards are scared. Fear drives their actions. Chris Brown does whatever he can think of to keep women subservient to him, even if it means kicking them while they're down — literally or figuratively.
Men shouldn't have to think of the women in their lives to have respect for women in general. Even so, it pains me to think of Brown's young daughter and the thoughts that will fill her mind. I can't help but wonder whether he'll hold her back before she's even begun the race. Even if it's too late for her father, I hope Royalty will be surrounded by other voices — strong voices of those who see women for who they truly are: builders and visionaries and creators.
Chris Brown is not the type of person I want to listen to. I don't want to hear his lyrics or his music, because they're filled to the brim with misogyny. I don't want to hear his foolish remarks.
I want Kehlani to know that his comments are nothing. He is nothing. A man who has to stoop to this level to stay in the "lead" was never in the lead in the first place.
I want her to know that we don't need him, nor men like him.
But then again, my hope is that Kehlani knew this already.
If you or someone you know is dealing with mental illness, there are ways to get help. Find resources, tips, and immediate help at Half of Us, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK.
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