Russell Simmons has opened his mighty tone-deaf mouth once again and put his foot right in it. The subject: Chris Brown. The gist: Everybody stop picking on Chris Brown. The logic: Because Chris Brown is an innocent young foal of a man being destroyed by fame, which, as everybody knows, is a ruthless, crushing prison dressed up as a life of privilege and riches.
Church! Brown’s straits have grown so dire that he’s had to part with his publicist. His publicist! Cripes, will Brown’s suffering never end? It’s almost as if someone grabbed Brown by the back of his neck and beat him with the dashboard of a rented Lamborghini!
The Simmons essay -- in the same way that a high school book report is technically an essay -- is just too rich to paraphrase. We’re going to have to parse this poetry. Here are some of our favorite excerpts:
"Chris is suffering from the same thing as almost every young star has gone through, including the Disney kids."
Absolutely. Because everybody remembers that time that Nick Jonas trashed the "Good Morning America" green room. Sorry, Russell. Please. Do continue.
"And because of that one regretful incident, no one will give him a break."
Right. That incident where he beat up Rihanna. Or maybe it was the incident where Brown referred to said beating as a “mishap.” Or maybe it was the incident when Brown made homophobic slurs on Twitter. Or maybe it was that incident where all the PAs at GMA had to dash for cover from the flying slivers of Brown-borne shrapnel. Because that one incident should not haunt a young man for the rest of his days.
"Chris Brown is suffering."
Well, yeah. Have you ever had your hair bleached? Hurts your scalp like a mother.
"I am troubled by the people, critics and members of the media who drag Chris away from his art. His freedom is deeply rooted in his artistic expression. It is during those seconds of stillness when you're dancing that the Christ/Buddha/Allah/Moses inside of you is awakened and comes to power."
Yeah, absolutely, like that time when -- wait, what?
"Coming back home is a very difficult thing. Coming back to being normal, coming back to that pure place of artistry."
You sure, Russell? Because the cracks that Brown left in the windows at the ABC TV studios are absolutely gorgeous. They’re like Jackson Pollock meets Banksy. Art is still alive and well within Chris. Promise.
"My heart and office door is always open to him."
Hey, that’s terrific. I just hope your office doesn’t have any windows.
-- Leslie Gornstein
Photo: Chris Brown, left, and Russell Simmons attend the "F.A.M.E." album release dinner in New York City. Credit: Larry Busacca / Getty Images