Brown and Rihanna – Black Cyclic Domestic Violence

Black Domestic Violence

Curtailing the cycle of violence

This whole Rihanna and Chris Brown ordeal is really devastating to both the artists and their fans, but what needs to be discussed more is the prevalence of domestic violence in the Black family.  Domestic violence is really troubling in the black community, as it usually has a cycle effect – as children growing up watching their Dad physically abuse their Mother will usually grow up and exhibit similar behavior to their potential mate.  Thus, to stop domestic violence, it needs to start at home with the family, and conflicts need to be resolved with discourse as opposed to physical actions.  Here are some alarming stats of black domestic violence that will NOT make you wonder why even though a talented, and rich entertainer such as Chris Brown is not immune to black domestic violence as he grew up in a household where he saw his mother being physically abused by his Step Dad.


Overall, African Americans were victimized by intimate partners a significantly higher rates than persons of any other race between 1993 and 1998. Black females experienced intimate partner violence at a rate 35% higher than that of white females, and about 22 times the rate of women of other races. Black males experienced intimate partner violence at a rate about 62% higher than that of white males and about 22 times the rate of men of other races.

Callie Marie Rennison. and Sarah Welchans, U.S. Dep’t of Just., NCJ 178247, Intimate Partner Violence (2000), available at

African-American women experience significantly more domestic violence than White women in the age group of 20-24. Generally, Black women experience similar levels of intimate partner victimization in all other age categories as compared to White women, but experience slightly more domestic violence. (Estimates are provided from the National Crime Victimization Survey, which defines an intimate partner as a current or former spouse, girlfriend, or boyfriend. Violent acts include murder, rape, sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, and simple assault.)

Callie Marie Rennison, U.S. Dep’t of Just., NCJ 187635, Intimate Partner Violence and Age of Victim, 1993-1999, at 4, (2001), available at

Approximately 40% of Black women report coercive contact of a sexual nature by age 18.

Africana Voices Against Violence, Tufts University, Statistics, 2002,

The number one killer of African-American women ages 15 to 34 is homicide at the hands of a current or former intimate partner.

Africana Voices Against Violence, Tufts University, Statistics, 2002,

In a study of African-American sexual assault survivors, only 17% reported the assault to police.

Africana Voices Against Violence, Tufts University, Statistics, 2002

The Family is where most of our problems start from – how we deal with situations at home is a strong precursor and indicator on how we will relate with the world.  Thus, the resolution lies in re-building the family unit and teaching and practicing positive family values – its the only way to stop the cycle of violence.



2 thoughts on “Brown and Rihanna – Black Cyclic Domestic Violence”

  1. I think when people stop racializing violence, and focus on the “act” and not the skin of a person, then maybe violence can be resolved .

  2. Well, I think that in this situation, race does play a pivotal role as if you take a poll of most of the black offenders in jail, they will tell you that they grew up in a domestic violent household. In terms of the black family, the root of our problems start at home – and until it is resolved (at home), we will continue to struggle …

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