Real Housewives of Atlanta has some big decisions to make for the upcoming seventh season. Which cast member will stay on board and which one will get the axe? Millions of viewers of the highly rated Bravo TV reality show are split in half over the publicized physical violence demonstrated on the network. Cast member Porsha Williams is receiving the same love and support from many fans around the country for her violent attack onto fellow cast mate Kenya Moore as Grammy award-winning singer Chris Brown received for his violent outburst onto pop star Rihanna. It is raising many questions as to what the world of entertainment is coming to when violent behavior should be supported, celebrated, and rewarded.
Many fans who tuned into last Sunday’s Real Housewives of Atlanta reunion special were left in a jaw-dropping state. Bravo TV has had the winning formula for a successful show placing success driven women with strong personalities and egos together to see what would happen. Weeks of filming affluent women provoking one another makes for an entertaining Sunday evening in millions of homes. For the past six seasons, the reunion taping has been the anticipated finale to see who sheds tears and/or who gets the last cut throat word in. However, viewers had never seen any cast member from the Real Housewives of Atlanta reunion taping unable to take the heat and react with violence.
Cast members Phaedra Parks and Porsha Williams, who reportedly had a meeting prior to the taping to discuss former Miss USA Kenya Moore, had made it apparent that they had come for blood. Parks, whose husband was recently charged with identity theft and had an attraction for Moore, opened the show by throwing the first jab at Moore stating she was involved with an “invisible man.” Moore remained calm and did not react. Parks then called Moore a “whore.” Moore finally began to defend herself against Parks. Williams, known for being the less-than-smart cast member, took her opportunity to get her dig into Moore as well by spewing a hearsay rumor. Williams, with her high pitch voice, would not allow Moore to get a word in. Moore began to play with her queen’s scepter pointing it in jest like a queen. Williams snatched the bejeweled scepter from Moore and threw it to the floor. Moore, still remaining calm and cool, received laughter from her fellow cast mates as she then pulled out a megaphone from her bag. She entertained the viewers as she spoke into the megaphone, so that Williams could no longer drown her out.
Viewers watched intensely as Williams proceeded to speak over the megaphone by calling Moore a “whore from the 90s.” Moore responded to Williams by speaking into her megaphone. Williams jumped up from the sofa to confront her cast mate. Andy Cohen, Bravo TV vice president of talent and development, unsuccessfully attempted to stop Williams as she violently grabbed Moore by her hair and flung her to the ground dragging her across the stage. Moore, never once using the megaphone or the scepter to defend herself from the violent attack, calmly left the stage and called 911.
Cohen later questioned Williams in her dressing room. The young reality star began to explain she “blacked out” and wanted Cohen to understand she had just went through a bad divorce. She went further stating she could not take Moore “provoking” her. Supporters of Williams took to Twitter and Facebook cheering on her violent attack on Moore and justifying her outburst. Others, however, believe those that support Williams’ physical attack are of the same mentality that rallied around R&B singer Chris Brown, stating he was “provoked” when he reportedly got into a heated argument with singer Rihanna and physically attacked her.
Brown, who is currently in jail for violating probation, received a surprisingly amount of love and support from millions of fans around the world. Much of the public argued that laying hands on anyone, whether man, woman, or child, is not acceptable. Brown, thanks to his amazing legal team, managed to get sentenced to a plush Malibu anger management rehab center and community service instead of jail for his violent “black out.” His career skyrocketed and his rock star lifestyle never skipped a beat. Many still come to his defense stating he was dealing with a lot in his life emotionally and Rihanna provoked him on that unfortunate night. Whether Rihanna reportedly yelled at Chris Brown, called him demeaning names, and waved her bejeweled finger in his face, Brown was an adult who made a choice.
As talks flood the media as to whether or not Bravo TV will fire Porsha Williams from Real Housewives of Atlanta or if Kenya Moore will leave the show if Bravo TV decides to reward Williams, what is disturbing to most is the amount of support Williams’ violent behavior has received. It is as if the Jerry Springer show is being revived through Bravo TV and the audience is cheering like a thirsty mob for blood shed, “Jerry! Jerry! Jerry!” Though attorney cast mate Phaedra Parks instructed Williams to apologize to Moore immediately following the attack, reportedly there has not been a formal apology. Williams had a warrant out for her arrest for the assault, posted bail, and was allegedly out partying the same night. She reportedly is sticking to her story that she “blacked out” after being provoked and is determined to clear her name.
Many adults sit back, running down the list of times a stranger, family member, spouse, friend, neighbor, boss, and a co-worker have “provoked” them. Men and women have thought about all of the pressure that has taken an emotional toll on their life to the point they feel they can’t take anymore and want to hit somebody, but they don’t. When Williams walked onto that stage for the taping of the reunion she knew it was not going to be a happy family reuniting. She was entering the lion’s den where she and her fellow cast mates would dredge up the ugly past to provoke one another. Though Kenya Moore, Kandi Burruss, Cynthia Bailey, NeNe Leakes, and Phaedra Parks came prepared to do verbal combat, they were dressed in thick skin to take the hits and remain cool in their gowns no matter what. Williams, however, came prepared to dish it out, but she was not emotionally or mentally prepared to remain cool. Unlike her cast mates, she lost her cool in the worst way.
Many fans are supporting and cheering on celebrities like Porsha Williams, Chris Brown, Lindsay Lohan, and Justin Bieber who seemingly get a golden pass for violent behavior because they are dealing with a lot of challenges in their life and were “provoked.” If Bravo TV decides to reward Porsha Williams by keeping her on the Real Housewives of Atlanta, hoping she will “black out” again for ratings, many viewers will see the network as promoting violence. NeNe Leakes, who reportedly choked cast mate Kim Zolciak that also resulted in a 911 emergency call, is now one of the highest paid Housewives at a reported $1 million a season. Maybe Williams is going for $2 million. What is Bravo TV selling? More importantly, why is the public buying it?
Opinion by Meleika Gardner