High time for Chris Brown to face the man in the mirror

breezy-suitAnother week, another ill-advised rant from Chris Brown.

On March 6, the pop/R&B star — affectionately known as Breezy to his fans — offered some R-rated advice about relationships at the Emerson Theatre in Hollywood. And while his tips for men can’t be printed here, suffice to say Brown recommends claiming ownership of a woman’s private parts to keep her faithful. Not exactly the stuff fairytales are made of.

Also last week, the 23-year-old allegedly got into an argument with his bodyguard Big Pat and left him in Bermuda, and later that day was caught on video threatening a valet over a $10 parking fee.

Since his infamous 2009 altercation with then-girlfriend Rihanna in which he left her face bruised and bloodied, Brown has entangled himself in a number of conflicts that call his self-control and judgment into question.

In March of 2011, after “Good Morning America” host Robin Roberts asked Brown about the Rihanna incident, he allegedly threw a chair at a window in his dressing room and stormed out of the building shirtless. In June of 2012, Brown was involved in a New York City nightclub scuffle with singer/rapper Drake that left several people injured. In January of this year, Brown reportedly assaulted singer Frank Ocean over a parking space outside a studio in West Hollywood.

In addition to real-world altercations, Brown has had multiple Twitter meltdowns. The most recent took place in November of 2012, when he responded to harassment by comedian/Internet troll Jenny Johnson with a series of vulgar tweets and deleted his Twitter account.

If Brown’s actions are suspect, his appearance is also cause for concern. These days, the once clean-cut idol is heavily tattooed and gaunt. He has been seen onstage and in pictures smoking weed, but his haggard appearance suggests he may be using something more dangerous.

One has to wonder when someone in his circle of friends, family and well-paid handlers is going to step in and say enough is enough.

Chris Brown is a self-taught, phenomenally talented singer and dancer. He is by far the best dancer of his generation. He released his self-titled debut album at 16, a time when most of us are trying to navigate the halls of high school, not the pitfalls and pressures of stardom.

He is also an individual whose troubled past is clearly affecting his present. Brown grew up in a household where he repeatedly witnessed his stepfather physically abuse his mother. He reportedly was so terrified during some of these beatings that he wet himself. One can only imagine how those experiences would scar a person’s psyche, and how those scars would manifest themselves in the glare of the spotlight.

Add to those painful memories the fact that Brown’s violent behavior has prompted a legitimate public backlash that drives him deeper into the defensiveness and anger he needs to escape. It’s clear that whatever issues caused Brown to attack Rihanna remain unresolved and continue to resurface in the form of outbursts and violence, while he and his enablers exist in a haze of weed smoke and denial.

Denial is a dangerous state of mind. So I sincerely hope that Brown demonstrates the maturity and self-awareness to finally address these issues. As difficult as it can be to ask for help, especially as a male and a celebrity in a society that expects both to be invincible, the alternative is not a viable option.

People in pain hurt others, but most of all they hurt themselves. Brown has enormous talent and potential, but he would not be the first artist with a rare gift to succumb to his demons and implode.

Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse and Whitney Houston are all proof that even the brightest stars can fade away and disappear. Brown’s star seems to be fading slowly, but it is fading nonetheless. Personally, I’d prefer to see a better outcome for the young phenom they call Breezy.


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