Photo courtesy of Wireimage.com
The LA Times reports that Robin Fenty, aka Rihanna, is the named alleged victim
in the Chris Brown case in which he allegedly inflicted horrific injuries on her and threatened to kill her.
TMZ has details.
Naming the victim
I know that someone will take issue with Rihanna’s name being published and argue that her privacy has been violated. I’m waiting for it.
Geneva Overholser, Missouri School of Journalism professor and the
Pulitzer prize winner for a series on rape, argues that “in the long
run, we’ll never get rid of the stigma if we don’t treat these like
regular crimes. … It’s just not ethical to make a choice about guilt
or innocence, which is effectively what we do. It makes us look like we
are assuming innocence on one part, guilt on another. … We should not
be determining who deserves our protection.”
I’m of the opinion that shame is for criminals.
Blaming the victim
And of course, there will be those who will ask what Rihanna “did to provoke” Chris Brown. No matter what she did, violent behavior is an abuser’s choice.
From Helpguide.org, Domestic Violence and Abuse:
Victims of domestic abuse or domestic violence may be men or women, although
women are more commonly victimized. (Note:this article will use the pronoun “he” for
convenience only) This abuse happens among heterosexual couples and
in same-sex partnerships. Except for the gender difference, domestic abuse doesn’t discriminate.
It happens within all age ranges, ethnic backgrounds, and financial levels. The abuse may occur
during a relationship, while the couple is breaking up, or after the relationship has ended.
Despite what many people believe, domestic violence is not due to the abuser’s loss of control
over his or her behavior. In fact, violence is a deliberate choice made by the abuser in order to
take control over his wife or partner.
Violent behavior is an abuser’s choice.
Reasons we know an abuser’s behaviors are not about anger and rage:
- He does not batter other individuals – the boss who does not give
him time off or the gas station attendant that spills gas down the side
of his car. He waits until there are no witnesses and abuses the person
he says he loves.
- If you ask an abused woman, “can he stop when the phone rings or the
police come to the door?” She will say “yes”. Most often when the
police show up, he is looking calm, cool and collected and she is the one who
may look hysterical. If he were truly “out of control” he would not be able
to stop himself when it is to his advantage to do so.
- The abuser very often escalates from pushing and shoving to hitting in places
where the bruises and marks will not show. If he were “out of control” or “in
a rage” he would not be able to direct or limit where his kicks or punches
Here’s a link to information about resources, phone numbers, websites and secular, religious, and government programs to help victims of abuse: Abused Women.org