As I've mentioned before, the deluge of duets to be found on radio these days definitely satisfies my love of two voices joined in storytelling via song. Most of the radio hit duets come and go and I don't think about them again. They are mostly ditties I find fun in the car but that I don't make a point of listening to later. However, there's one duet playing now that is serious business and I think will stay with me for quite some time.
Love the Way You Lie (Eminem ft. Rihanna) is a really hard song to listen to. It's about the very real problems of perverse expressions of love and domestic violence. Within the circle of my family and friends I am unaware of any instances of domestic violence so this is something I don't have any personal experience with (for which I am thankful) but the song seems to pinpoint the cycle of psychological destruction and dependence.
During my Ride Along, the officer to whom I was assigned said that domestic violence was the second hardest part of his job. Domestic violence is not a simple case of righting a violent wrong; the psychological aspect of domestic violence is far more powerful than the physical strength of the aggressor. I was pleased to learn that, in California, domestic violence calls always end with an arrest. If the responding officer can determine clear fault then the assailant is apprehended, if not, then both partners are taken in. Every case is pursued and, if evidence allows, prosecuted. Because domestic violence runs so much deeper than the violence, it is often hard for victims to act as their own advocates. I'm glad to know that the state of California is attempting this advocacy.
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
California Court's Self Help Center
California Partnership to End Domestic Violence
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Note: I mostly filter out entertainment news (and only watch sports on TV) so "popular" response is often something I totally miss. I personally responded to this video with revulsion. I think it's an obviously unhealthy relationship. The video (and the song) makes me overwhelmingly sad. I thought that was the whole point. This shit should make you sad. It should make you want to encourage people to settle for nothing less than healthy, respectful relationships. However, it appears that some people are responding to it as "passionate" and "sexy." What?! Are you kidding me? Anyway, if you'd like a perspective on the damages of such a response, and someone's opinion who was not at all impressed with the song, I thought this was a very good post.