We at The Gloss are not going to pretend to be unbiased in the whole “Chris Brown is an unapologetically abusive asshole” matter, so I can’t help but smile about the new that he canceled an upcoming show due to public outrage against his assault on Rihanna.

Though he was scheduled to headline a concert on December 26 in Georgetown, Guyana, opposition lawmakers and women’s rights groups staged protests that led to Brown being told he’s unwelcome as a performer due to his beating of Rihanna in 2009. Concert promoter Hits & Jams Entertainment said yesterday that Brown was uncomfortable with the protests and backed out.

This comes on the coattails of news that Irish band The Original Rudeboys turned down the opportunity to open for Brown, stating, “Even though it’s a huge opportunity to play with a major hip-hop star and a substantial fee was offered, we are completely against Chris Brown’s assault on Rihanna.”

The headline for The Examiner about Chris Brown’s cancellation reads, “Chris Brown cancels concert due to protests: Will he ever get past his mistakes?

Okay, here is the thing: I believe people can change. As somebody who has made a whole lot of mistakes, I can empathize with those who have fucked up and want to change. For example, I was really excited when Amanda interviewed Hugo Schwyzer a couple weeks ago, as I think that despite his very terrible mistakes, he clearly wanted to change and has seemingly done so. Active change–not just announced–is what may (or may not, depending on your deeds and others’ opinions) lead you to redemption in the public eye.

But the key term there is “want to change,” not simply “say you’re sorry a little bit and then act like an asshole.” Basically, not behave the way Brown has ever since his arrest.

You get past your mistakes when you change, when you alter yourself to become better than them. While you still embody the attitude and essence of those faults. If you have harmed somebody, you don’t briefly apologize, then continue to perform shortly thereafter, wondering why everybody’s a “hater” and getting a tattoo of a battered woman’s face (anybody who has ever seen a Dia de los Muertos sugar skull knows that that isn’t what it looks like). You show up to community service. You actually feel remorse and act accordingly.

I believe in forgiveness, as we have all made mistakes, whether they were small or huge or anywhere in-between, but forgiveness comes with real change. Hopefully, protests like these will become more widespread and show the music industry that it’s unacceptable to let an unapologetic abuser take the stage. This is likely just wishful thinking, but nevertheless, I’m glad a city collectively took notice.

Photo: Adriana M. Barraza/WENN.com