But that doesn't mean we have to
Much digital ink has been spilled over the altercation that took place outside a Los Angeles recording studio on January 27, when Chris Brown and his posse allegedly jumped Frank Ocean for a parking space. (Competition for parking in L.A. is just that brutal sometimes.) Later, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Police Department reportedly told the Post that Ocean sought to press charges against the oft-embattled Brown, who was already on probation following his 2009 assault of then-(and now again)-girlfriend, Rihanna. That apparently is no longer the case, according to a post on Ocean's Tumblr, which he subsequently tweeted.
"as a child i thought if someone jumped me it would result in me murdering or mutilating a man. but as a man i am not a killer. i’m an artist and a modern person. i’ll choose sanity. no criminal charges. no civil lawsuit. forgiveness, albeit difficult, is wisdom. peace, albeit trite, is what i want in my short life. peace."
In December, SPIN named Ocean's channel ORANGE the Best Album of 2012, in part because of its transcendent warmth and the tenderhearted emotion it laid bare. As John Mayer said with uncharacteristic eloquence, it was "heroic" self-expression. So it doesn't seem at all out of character for the Alt-R&B star to take the high road here — even though, from a PR perspective, he didn't have to; it's hard to come out of a situation involving Chris Brown looking worse than Chris Brown. And for that reason, Frank's may not be the final word on the matter.
Though Brown deleted his Instagram after obliviously comparing himself to Jesus, he's not one to keep quiet for long. There is also the Grammy Awards, scheduled to take place Sunday, February 10. Ocean is up for trophies in six categories, and as a Best Album nominee is scheduled to perform. Brown is nominated for Best Contemporary R&B Album and isn't confirmed to sing, but the usual rumors about a possible duet with Rihanna, who is officially performing, persist. Either way, both Ocean and Brown will be at the show — unless Grammy producers decide to rescind their invitation — and when it comes to another face-to-face encounter, frankly, we're not about to give the Fortune singer the benefit of the doubt, forgiveness or not.