If Sinbad and Ike Turner had a child of great talent and potential who would ultimately squander both because of his issues with anger and maybe some matters that recall the D.A.R.E. program, he’d look and aggressively dance a lot like Chris Brown.
Brown is the R&B equivalent of the kin you’ve rooted for but decided to let go of because you’ve finally accepted that they may be in the HOV lane to the crossroads. Because of his celebrity, though, Brown will never truly go away. Still, with his most recent disturbing headline, it’s time to internalize En Vogue’s “Give It Up, Turn It Loose.” We’ll always have “Yo (Excuse Me Miss),” “Take You Down,” “Damage” and “Fine China,” but for those who continue to hold out hope that Brown will rise above his problems, it’s time to pop, lock and drop into reality.
On Tuesday, TMZ reported that Brown’s former girlfriend Karrueche Tran filed legal documents accusing Brown of threatening to kill her. Additionally, Tran claims that Brown has physically assaulted her in the past. And suddenly I now want to get up and do Soulja Boy’s Superman dance.
Karrueche claims in a sworn statement to the judge, earlier this month Chris “told a few people that he was going to kill me.” She then says Chris told the friends if he can’t have her then no one else can, threatening he was going to “take me out” and “threatened to shoot me.”
Karrueche also says several years ago Chris “punched me in my stomach twice,” and “pushed me down the stairs.” This would have been during the time Chris was on probation for the Rihanna beating.
Tran also claims that Brown has threatened her friends and recently threw a drink at one of them. So, not only is this man Light, Bright Ike, but he’s part-time vintage Evelyn Lozada from Basketball Wives.
In any case, the judge granted said domestic violence restraining order, requiring Brown to stay 100 yards away from Tran, her mom and her brother.
In response, Brown took to Instagram to try to clear his name while simultaneously confirming your worst suspicions about his state of mind as he rambled rather incoherently. Forgoing a publicist and lawyer, Brown said, “Make sure y’all don’t be listening to all this bullshit man. I don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about. Don’t believe all that bullshit, bro.”
His comments might have come across as more convincing had he not delivered them in a manner that recalls a kite flying high in the clear blue sky.
Of the many problems Chris Brown has, one in particular is his unfortunate habit of documenting his bad decisions and erratic behavior for all to see. Less than a month ago, Brown took to Al Gore’s internet and recorded himself sounding like the very violent menace his ex-girlfriend is accusing him to be. Do people not realize that when it comes to sharing videos on the internet, 1) we can see you and 2) the internet is forever?
In that now infamous clip in which he looked like the lost cousin of Kris Kross, Brown said:
Ladies y’all be complaining about niggas being like stalkers, in love with y’all, kinda crazy shit, and get tired of ’em. Well guess what? I’m one of them niggas. If I love you, bitch, ain’t nobody gon’ have ya. I’mma make ya miserable. I’mma chase that nigga out, I’mma chase yo ass around.
Ladies, y’all ever dealt with a nigga who just be blowin’ your shit up? Hopping gates, stalking the fuck out of you, getting on your nerves? Well, shit. I’m one of them niggas.
And now he is being accused not only of additional physical abuse years after he beat another now-former girlfriend, Rihanna, but also of living up to the very abusive stalker he boldly professed himself to be on camera.
For years now, fans and other sympathizers have rallied behind Brown. Some have made excuses for his behavior. In many cases it was a matter of victim-blaming, though in others, Brown’s having witnessed domestic violence as a child was cited as a reason to hold out hope that he would one day get himself together. That he would own his mistakes and ultimately overcome whatever internal demons and the childhood trauma that helped create them.
But as someone who is not unfamiliar with some of what Brown has spoken of previously, there comes a point when you realize that some people are simply stuck. Maybe critics—self included—were too harsh on him. Perhaps more people needed to give him a chance to redeem himself. There were instances in which it seemed as if Brown was damned if he did, damned if he didn’t.
Nevertheless, Brown has largely been the maker of his own madness.
Chris Brown never let go of the misogyny. In fact, he continued to profit from it in his music. Chris Brown remained defensive more often than not about his repeating the very cycle of abuse he was exposed to as a kid. Chris Brown never stopped battling people, be it online or in person. Chris Brown has exhibited violence for several years.
Brown is a man of means; he has refused to use his blessings to become a better, happier and less terrorizing man. Brown can call Karrueche Tran’s accusations “bullshit,” but he’s given us countless examples of why we should believe every single thing she told that judge. Even now, I can recall the sight of Brown following Tran outside a club in 2015—which at the time was reported to have resulted in an argument.
Look at him. Look at her. Look at the fear in her eyes. Look at the traits of an abuser on full display without the slightest sign of shame.
I don’t know what will become of Brown, but I do know that not a song in the world can excuse him anymore. Whatever emotional attachment people have to him because of his work, it is not enough when considering that he is on camera boasting about stalking someone for no other reason than her rightly deciding that he doesn’t deserve her.
Brown’s debut album was released in 2005. We learned that he beat women in 2009. Seven years later, he’s being accused of the same thing, and throughout these seven years, he has shown himself to be more like Eddie from The Five Heartbeats than Michael from the Jackson 5. Let him go.
If anything, now is the time to focus less on Brown’s dedication to self-destruction and more on the havoc he brings to others who enter his space.