Music

Bad idea Grammys

Chris Brown
Chris Brown
Chris Brown, performing in his somewhat controversial return to the Grammys in 2012. | Rap, Hip Hop, Grammys, Music,

Why a Woman-Beater Shouldn't Perform Twice on the Grammys

The red carpet show on E! showed LL Cool J discussing how they planned on celebrating Whitney Houston's life at the Grammys. They felt it was too soon to dedicate the entire show to Houston and that the newest musicians deserved to enjoy a night unfettered by the dark cloud that surrounded Houston's death. They deserved to enjoy themselves. There would be a few tributes, but other than that--the night would be about the music.

I respect that. Let the young, doe-eyed musicians enjoy their night.

My only question is this: What sort of example are you giving to these musicians (not to mention the young people watching) when you allow a person who beat his girlfriend the night before the Grammys three years prior time to perform not once, but twice on the most heralded pop stage out there?
You allow him to perform twice, and then honor him with a Grammy? There are only so many spots--why not let someone else perform? Mumford and Sons would've been a good choice. Why not Bon Iver? Or if you're going to stick with the same genre of music, I'm sure that Jay-Z or Andre 3000 would've been open to it--neither of them with a history of beating women.

Music already has enough problems--the substance abuse, the arrests due to drug charges or gang-related crimes. There's no reason to herald a man convicted of beating a woman right in front of her face. At the BET awards just last June, Brown was again held up on a pedestal, and although we don't know the real reasons for Rihanna not showing up (even though she was nominated), one could ascertain why. In an LA Times Blog, a writer describes the awkward moment when their names crossed paths due to a major snafu.

As a fan presented the Coca-Cola Viewers' Choice Award, Brown's name was called as the winner (the show used tablet computers instead of traditional envelopes to reveal who had won), but then it was quickly changed to Rihanna.

"Well, this is awkward," said Drake, who emerged from backstage to accept on behalf of the absent singer for their hit "What's My Name," amid gasps and muttering from the confused audience.

At the conclusion of the ceremony, host Kevin Hart bought out Brown to tell him he was actually the intended winner of the trophy, along with the FANdemonium Award. Talk about awkward--especially as a chunk of the audience had already began filing out of the venue.

Yes, awkward indeed. How could they have let something so embarrassing and disrespectful happen?

Do we not remember what happened?

The night before the Grammys in 2009, Chris Brown got angry at his girlfriend, Rihanna, and took that anger out on her face. She ran to the hospital, then to LAPD and TMZ got ahold of this photo of Rihanna (which they later paid hefty fines for). They were both scheduled to perform at the Grammys the next night (sound familiar?), but this time, neither did. Chris Brown turned himself into the LAPD, was booked on suspicion of criminal threats, and was then released on $50,000 bail.

The lack of support for Rihanna back then was appalling--stars like Carrie Underwood leaving comments like: "I don't think anybody actually knows what happened. I have no advice." Or Mary J. Blige with her profound words: "They're both young and beautiful people, and that's it." No, actually that's not it--there is a difference between right and wrong, and a man should not beat anyone, let alone his girlfriend.

The week before the Grammys, Grammy producers confirmed that Chris Brown would be performing on last night's show with this quote:

"We're glad to have him back," said executive producer Ken Ehrlich. "I think people deserve a second chance, you know. If you'll note, he has not been on the Grammys for the past few years and it may have taken us a while to kind of get over the fact that we were the victim of what happened."

This entire statement puts the Grammys as the victim here--completely undercutting Rihanna. Completely. I'm sorry Grammy Producer, have some respect for women who are abused.

Unfortunately, that same indifference continued last night with tweets supporting Chris Brown, and women urging him to do the same to them. See the 25 Horrible Reactions to Chris Brown at the Grammys. However, the backlash on the Grammys' Facebook page tells another story. See the post "Congratulations to Best R&B album winner Chris Brown."

Doug McDurham said this on the Facebook wall: "Couldn't help but think about how all the victims of domestic violence must feel while watching his performance. So sorry that the grammys chose to have him perform (which was mediocre at best anyway)." Whereas Felicia Cox Russell disagreed: "Congrats Chris Brown, ppl [sic] judge you but they can't take away the fact that you paid your dues and you're a very talented young man...STAY FOCUSED!"

Unfortunately, the main focus will most likely be on Nicki Minaj for blaspheming the Catholic church (she learned well from Madonna about how to get America in an uproar). Surely, a man who beats a woman is much more blasphemous than someone who does a few artistic exorcism plots in her musical act....

What do you think? Should Chris Brown have been allowed to perform?

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Updated Aug 12, 2017 12:29 PM EDT | More details

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