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Remember when Chris Brown beat Rihanna so badly she ended up in the hospital? The incident is back in the news after an ad on Snapchat joked about Brown’s 2009 assault. The ad asked viewers whether they would prefer to “slap Rihanna” or “punch Chris Brown” beneath the words “impossible choices.” What’s so impossible about this choice?
Brown assaulted the singer in 2009, leaving her with horrific injuries that required hospital treatment. He pled guilty to felony assault and served nearly five years probation. But Brown was welcomed back by both fans and the music industry with open arms, despite repeated incidents of violence in the years since. Some ask why the singer gets a pass, and others argue that had Brown put Taylor Swift in the hospital, his career wouldn’t have survived. He’s arguably had a blockbuster career despite this — he performed a tribute to Michael Jackson at the 2010 BET awards, and dropped “F.A.M.E.”, his first No. 1 album, in 2011. He’s been nominated for a whopping 15 Grammys, winning one for “F.A.M.E.” He has been plagued in recent years by legal issues.
Snapchat claimed the ad was published "in error" and had been removed immediately: "We are sorry that this happened."
But Rihanna wasn’t having it. Ms. Fenty called out the social media company in an Instagram story: “I’d love to call it ignorance, but I know you ain’t that dumb….Shame on you.”
To her point, someone at Snapchat reviewed and approved that ad—it didn’t just “happen.” The platform was already reeling from a drop in value (if $1.3 billion can be considered a drop) after Kylie Jenner announced she was "sooo over" the app in February. Snapchat’s stock has tumbled nearly 5 percent since Rihanna posted her Instagram story — but no word as to whether it’s affected Chris Brown’s stock yet. So when are we declaring #TimesUp on Chris Brown — and making light of domestic violence?
(Photo: Rihanna and Chris Brown attend the 2009 GRAMMY Salute To Industry Icons. Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage/Getty Images)