I wrote a few weeks ago about the Rihanna and Chris Brown ordeal that shook the country for a little bit -- long story short, Rihanna was beaten and bruised by Chris Brown and people were trying to play the blame game.

A really interesting New York Times article was published yesterday about how youth are reacting to the Rihanna/Chris Brown narrative. I think for the most part, my analysis of how the blogosphere was reacting holds true for how both youth and youth in schools are talking about it. Rihanna bad, Chris Brown good. Rihanna is lucky to still be with him. Despite severe battery.

And I still argue (and so does the article) that the Chris Brown's relative success in this debacle is tied to masculinity:

“This is the air that hip-hop breathes,” said Ms. Rose, author of “The Hip Hop Wars.” “The celebration of a stereotype of an aggressive, physical, often misogynistic masculinity that often justifies resolving conflict through violence. It can’t be held responsible for this, but it can’t be ignored.” (Tricia Rose, prof. at Brown)

When are people going to realize that gender issues, and the construction of gender in this country, creates the opportunity for Chris Brown to somehow be the winner after brutally beating his girlfriend?

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