A scheduled performance by Rihanna of her song Run This Town has been pulled from CBS on the opening of Thursday night football in the US in light of recent criticism of the league regarding the Ray Rice wife-beating video.
Officials at the network decided that it might be in bad taste to have Rihanna as part of the broadcast, considering she was a victim of domestic violence at the hands of her then-boyfriend Chris Brown. They decided to replace the scheduled song with a conversation about the events that went down this week, involving a video of the Baltimore Ravens player.
‘We thought journalistically and from a tone standpoint, we needed to have the appropriate tone coverage’, said a statement from the network.
The video, which was taken in February, shows Ray Rice beating his then-fiancee Janay Palmer in a hotel lift, knocking her out and dragging out her unconscious body. In a press conference in March, Janay said she regretted her part in the incident, when she apparently spit on him, and they were now benefitting from marriage counselling.
The NFL gave Rice a two-game suspension, but when a longer version of the video was leaked, the league fired the player. It also said it had not seen the entire video when it passed the original two-game suspension. Nike and a number of other brands have also severed their relationships with Rice.
The league has come under scrutiny for protecting its players in domestic violence incidents. Last month it said players involved in such incidents will receive a six-game suspension, and if they offend again, they will get a lifetime ban from the NFL. They can appeal this ‘lifetime’ ban after a year, so that’s kind of BS.
This article originally appeared on The Debrief.