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Chris Brown on Friday tweeted that he wanted to go on tour with international pop star Rihanna. That may be a no-brainer when it comes to marketing and revenue, but Brown’s dark past with domestic violence left fans outraged at the idea.
During the 2009 Grammys, Brown reportedly assaulted then-girlfriend Rihanna during a pre-ceremony argument. His popularity hasn’t apparently suffered, and the R&B singer enjoys a base of ardent supporters on Twitter. While his suggestion of a world tour with Beyoncé, Rihanna, and Bruno Mars sparked an instant backlash, Brown’s supporters have been involved in a dayslong Twitter feud with anyone who stands in their way.
Brown in 2015 completed probation for the original battery charge. But he also has a history of violence against women: He’s been accused of assaulting female fans on three occasions and threatening another woman with a gun in 2016. Given his history of continued violent outbursts, the mere suggestion of touring with Rihanna became a hot Twitter topic.
Chris Brown fans really want us to forgive his woman beating ass. Domestic abuse ISNT a mistake it’s a CONSCIOUS choice. Rihanna going back to him didn’t excuse his behavior as most domestic abuse victims do it continuously. He was cancelled after that & always will be.
— cici (@melaninporn) February 12, 2018
You’re not on their level
— Rihanna30 (@rihweready) February 9, 2018
As Complex notes, Brown’s tweet came one day after the nine-year anniversary of his assault on Rihanna. Yet the conversation, boosted by Brown fans, has evolved into a comparison about whether Bruno Mars is a better performer than Brown.
Bruno Mars is not a better performer than Chris Brown…please stop it. Nigga Chris brown flipped and landed on beat…come on dawg
— Tu abuelo (@CallMeAlhaji) February 11, 2018
It’s the kind of parlor argument that social media thrives on, but it’s a disappointing sideshow given how the conversation originated—going from a serious discussion about domestic violence to comparing dance moves.
It shows how desensitized Twitter can be to ongoing problems.
Ramon Ramirez is the news director, and formerly the Dot's entertainment editor and evening editor. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, Grantland, Washington City Paper, Austin American-Statesman, and Austin Monitor.