Why You Won't See Dr. Dre Abuse Women in Compton

Dee Barnes says women are casualties of manipulated history
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2015 12:53 PM CDT
Why You Won't See Dr. Dre Abuse Women in Compton
This undated photo shows Dee Barnes with Dr. Dre.   (Instagram)

Like many, Dee Barnes says she cringed watching the now-famous video of a cop punching an unarmed grandmother, but her reaction was personal. "That must have been how it looked as Dr. Dre straddled me and beat me mercilessly on the floor of the women's restroom at the Po Na Na Souk nightclub in 1991," she thought. Years ago, Barnes—then host of Fox hip-hop show Pump It Up!—described the encounter: Upset by a segment on her show, Dr. Dre tried to choke Barnes and throw her down some stairs, smashed her head into a wall, and kicked her. "It ain't no big thing—I just threw her through a door," the rapper, who pleaded no contest to assault, later said. "That event isn't depicted in Straight Outta Compton, but I don't think it should have been," Barnes writes at Gawker. "The truth is too ugly for a general audience…But what should have been addressed is that it occurred."

Barnes says she's not the only woman Dre beat up, naming a one-time girlfriend and musician Tairrie B. He "made hyperbolic claims about all these heinous things he did to women. But then he went out and actually violated women. Straight Outta Compton would have you believe that he didn't really do that," she says. The film—directed, interestingly, by the same guy who filmed her show segment that peeved Dre—also leaves out the many female musicians who collaborated with NWA and "paved the way for the release of the Straight Outta Compton album," Barnes writes. Instead, "accurately articulating the frustrations of young black men being constantly harassed by the cops is at Straight Outta Compton's activistic core," she says, adding "there is a direct connection between the oppression of black men and the violence perpetrated by black men against black women." Read her full column. (More Dr. Dre stories.)

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