Dr. Dre has finally come out and apologized for several past incidents where he was physically abusive to women in his personal and professional life.
Hip-hop journalist Dee Barnes, ex girlfriend/mother of Dre’s son Michel’le and former Ruthless Records artist Tairrie B were three women whom Dre laid hands on during heated arguments or tense confrontations that took place when Dre’s infamous N.W.A. rap group was on the rise. Since the release of the N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton earlier this month, each of the women have come forward to detail their abuse at the hands of Dre and shed light on the fact that although the incidents negatively impacted their lives, little (if any) negative impact was felt by Dr. Dre as his career skyrocketed. The ladies each felt inclined to come forward with their stories again upon realizing that none of Dre’s history of abusing women was even mentioned in the biopic.
The most compelling recollection came by way of Dee Barnes, who penned a telling article for Gawker about the abuse she suffered at the hands of Dr. Dre and the history behind their connection. Among many other things, she noted that Dre had yet to publicly apologize to her or any of the women he harmed, which resulted in the hip hop mogul doing just that days later in a statement to the New York Times.
While Dee is appreciative and seemingly even accepting of Dre’s apology, the same can’t quite be said for Michel’e. After learning that Dre had issued an apology statement, Dee had this to say in another Gawker essay:
I hope he meant it. I hope he represents these words in his life. I hope that after all these years, he really is a changed man.
Dr. Dre has matured, and the women he’s hurt, including myself, have endured. I’m proud to be able to say goodbye to the man who at one point was straight outta fucks to give, as he consistently dismissed and disrespected any mention of his assault history.
When news of the apology broke, my social media feeds were immediately flooded with responses ranging from good to bad to ugly. I saw comments like, “That was the worst apology,” “Fake apology,” and, “He did not have the decency to state your names and do it face to face after all those years—that’s the least he could do.”
I understand people’s apprehension. The stakes are high now and money talks, loud. Is this is a PR move by Universal, which released Straight Outta Compton? Is Dre himself really remorseful or just saving face? To me, the answers to these questions matter less than the fact that Dre stepped up and performed his social responsibility by finally taking accountability for his actions. Who cares why he apologized? The point is that he did.
Michel’le, on the other hand, was much less accepting of Dre’s apology. In a recent interview with BBC, she made it crystal clear that Dre will have to come much harder before getting any pats on the back from her.
“I don’t really think it’s a sincere apology. He’s selling a movie. I just think it’s good PR at the moment.”
Given that both of these ladies suffered abuse from Dr. Dre on different levels, it’s not entirely surprising that they would each react differently to him apologizing publicly. Dee Barnes was the victim of an isolated (although equally as deplorable and no less excusable) abusive incident, while Michel’le suffered physical abuse from Dr. Dre throughout the course of their relationship which spanned several years and resulted in a child.
Are you surprised by either of their reactions, Clutchettes?