Thursday, November 5, 2009

Rihanna: It can happen to anybody

"I am strong. This happened to me. I didn't cause this. I didn't do it. This can happen to me and it can happen to anybody."

Those are the words from pop singer, Rihanna in her first interview with Diane Sawyer since the attack by boyfriend and fellow musician, Chris Brown.

Few opinions have been withheld on this very public case of domestic violence of two young rising stars. It has shed a harsh light on domestic abuse and shattered misconceptions and half-truths about attackers and victims. Wealth, beauty, power -- none of these things matter in cases of violence.

It also began a discussion about public figures and their role (if any) as role models. There was outcry among some who lambasted Rihanna for returning to Chris Brown but little discussion that this was entirely normal behavior.

But as Rihanna says herself, she is a human being. Who fell in love, who made mistakes, and is still growing as a woman. "When I realized that my selfish decision for love could result in some young girl getting killed, I could not be easy with that part. I could not be held responsible for telling them, 'Go back.'"

Not many of us can say that our decisions, especially ones so personal, will be judged and felt by millions. I applaud Rihanna for her strength and courage to speak about an experience shared by so many. We must all pledge to support survivors and educate our peers if we are ever to see an end to this vicious cycle of violence.

Photo credit: Flickr

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