Music mogul Russell Simmons has spoken out in defence of troubled singer Chris Brown, comparing his current struggles to those of Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears and urging the public to "give him a break".
Brown's popularity nosedived following his brutal 2009 attack on his ex-girlfriend Rihanna, which left him with an assault conviction and a sentence of probation and community service.
The Kiss Kiss hitmaker hit headlines again this week (beg21Mar11) after an uncomfortable interview on U.S. TV show Good Morning America prompted an angry outburst from the singer, who allegedly flew into a rage and smashed a dressing room window with a chair.
Brown apologised for his behaviour and now Simmons has spoken out in his defence - comparing the singer's current struggle with problems faced by former child stars such as Spears, who suffered a highly-publicised breakdown, and Lohan, who has spent the last few years in and out of jail and rehab.
In a post on his GlobalGrind.com website, Simmons writes, "Chris is suffering from the same thing that almost every young star has gone through, including the Disney kids. Having lost control, some of these young artists, sometimes, do an unspeakable thing at a moment in time. And they pay the price. But... what's not fair is artists paying the price of the sins in their young lives for the rest of their lives. Again, and again, and again. That's just not fair...
"And, you know, Disney kids are allowed a little bit more of a break. Sometimes you have to even feel sorry for them. Not that the media didn't continue to drive Britney Spears freakin' crazy. Not that the media doesn't mess with Miley Cyrus every day. Not that the media doesn't stalk Lindsay Lohan. I'm just saying, give this man a break...
"I know how good of a young man he is. He's having the same type of struggles that all those other Disney kids have and all the other people who have instant fame... and because of that one regretful incident, no one will give him a break."