Should we be calling Solange an abuser?

Images: Getty Images, Instagram
Images: Getty Images, Instagram

Solange Knowles is adored by many fans around the globe who love her music and aesthetic. She was showered with a number of happy birthday posts on social media recently - but there were also a few who refused to honour her. 

A Twitter user retweeted a sentiment that wished the singer a happy birthday and responded by saying '"We don't celebrate abusers."

In 2014, footage acquired by TMZ showed Solange attacking Jay Z in an elevator as herself and the Carters were leaving the MET Gala after party held at The Standard Hotel, reported Channel 24. The family initially decided not to publicly speak about the incident.

They did, however, release a statement shortly after the incident that read, '"Jay and Solange each assume their share of responsibility for what has occurred."

READ MORE: Do some jokes and TV story lines contribute to rape culture?

However, last year Jay Z spoke candidly about the incident in a interview with Rap Radar, saying, “We had one disagreement ever. Before and after we've been cool. She's like my sister. I will protect her. That's my sister, not my sister-in-law, my sister," reported Channel 24 — showing that there is no bad blood. 

Solange and Jay Z may have settled their differences, but some people say that we should not forget so easily:

Other people felt that the abuser title was way too harsh:

So, people are evidently conflicted. However, it is important to define what an abuser is before labelling a person one. According to the Cambridge Dictionary, an abuser is "someone who threatens another person in a cruel, violent, or unfair way". defines an abuser in detail by stating that abuse is not an accident, and abusers do not take responsibility for their actions, often blaming others for their wrongdoings. Solange acknowledged what she did, according to a statement to Associated Press and published by Time.

Abuse or assault?

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Janè Moss who is a social worker at Siyabonga Shelter in the Western Cape distinguishes between abuse and assault. "Assault is an attack on someones life," she explains. Whereas, "abuse refers to a pattern of behaviour, in other words not just one incident."

Solange assaulted Jay Z, she didn't abuse him. 

However, Janè further adds that when men are assaulted it is often ignored because of their figure and build. There is a belief that men "must and can protect themselves against women who is of a smaller build," she adds. 

On one hand, this notion excuses women who abuse and assault, and on the other promotes a nonchalant approach to abuse and assault afflicted upon men, when it should be taken as seriously as any other abuse or assault victim. 

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