“Straight Outta Compton” has topped the charts ever since it hit the theaters but critics have said that it leaves out Dr. Dre’s history of physically abusing women and skims over N.W.A.’s record of misogyny. Dee Barnes, Fox journalist and a victim of Dr. Dre’s abuse, seemed to think so too.
Barnes wrote an essay for Gawker, “Here’s What’s Missing From Straight Outta Compton: Me and the Other Women Dr. Dre Beat Up”, in which she briefly describes her experience and her opinions on the movie skipping over those parts in N.W.A.’s history.
She writes, “The truth is too ugly for a general audience. I didn’t want to see a depiction of me getting beat up, just like I didn’t want to see a depiction of Dre beating up Michel’le, his one-time girlfriend…But what should have been addressed is that it occurred…He should have owned up to the black eyes and scars he gave to his collaborator Michel’le. And he should have owned up to what he did to me. That’s reality. That’s reality rap. ”
Several days later, Dre made a statement to The New York Times apologizing to “the women I’ve hurt” stating that twenty-five years ago he was drinking too much and had no real structure to his life.
“However, none of this is an excuse for what I did. I’ve been married for 19 years and everyday I’m working to be a better man for my family, seeking guidance along the way. I’m doing everything I can so I never resemble that man again,” said Dr. Dre.
On Monday, Barnes wrote yet another essay for Gawker in response to Dr. Dre’s public apology. Barnes said that she hopes several things: that Dre meant his words, that he represents his words and that he really is a changed man.
“I’m proud to be able to say goodbye to the man who at one point was straight outta fucks to give, as he consistently dismissed and disrespected any mention of his assault history,” Barnes writes. “Goodbye to the man who didn’t deny it and even bragged, ‘I just did it, you know. Ain’t nothing you can do now by talking about it. Besides, it ain’t no big thing–I just threw her through a door.’”