Oprah’s Domestic Violence Double Standard?
Oprah is being called out by a number of media outlets for her alleged double standard regarding domestic violence.
At the center of the controversy is Debra Winans, ex-wife of the 47-year old Grammy Award winning gospel and R&B singer BeBe Winans. In February, a story made headlines that BeBe had shoved Debra to the ground in front of their two kids (ages 10 and 13) after a verbal dispute regarding custody issues. A domestic charge violence against BeBe is pending until a court hearing in 2010.
Oprah has been very vocal about her zero-tolerance policy regarding domestic abuse following the highly publicized Chris Brown and Rihanna incident. On February 8, 2009, after a Grammy Awards pre-show party, the two singers had a physical altercation in a vehicle that left Rihanna bloodied and bruised. After the incident, Oprah’s told ‘Access Hollywood’ that “Domestic violence is something that I wouldn’t tolerate. Period,” and subsequently banned Chris Brown from appearing on her show. Ironically, BeBe’s arrest came only one day before Oprah aired a special on her show about domestic violence.
Just recently, Winfrey invited BeBe Winans on her show to host “Oprah’s Karaoke Challenge,” an ‘American Idol’ style competition to find the nation’s best karaoke singer. Winans was brought on to promote his new reunion album with his sister CeCe Winans, ‘Still.’
Many wonder if Winfrey was simply unaware of the charges against Winans. Others see it as a blantant double standard. TMZ recently spoke to Debra Winans, who said she is “hurt by Oprah’s decision to have BeBe on the show.” Winfrey has yet to issue a public response.