Recently, Rihanna was among the many international icons who drew attention to the ongoing farmers' protest in India.  

Her tweet soon went viral with certain people, including celebrities, praising her for drawing attention to the issue, while others questioned her knowledge of, and interest in, the subject. 

However, apart from these two responses, was a third kind - one where Rihanna's ex, singer Chris Brown, was hailed for hitting her when they were dating, back in 2009.

The comments ranged from people stating they 'understood' why Chris beat Rihanna, to people saying they 'respect' Chris Brown, going so far as to share photos of Rihanna's face when she was hit. 

To reiterate, people were blatantly supporting Chris Brown for physically assaulting Rihanna. 

Rihanna
Source: BBC

Irrespective of where your ideologies and beliefs lie, supporting Chris Brown for hitting Rihanna is plain wrong. Brown's actions were not just despicable, but also, illegal. And domestic violence continues to remain India's, and even the world's, open secret. 

But, even if that weren't true, is domestic violence really something to be supported, no matter what your reason be? 

It's not 'western influence' but rather such a blatant disregard for a woman's opinion that is ruining our culture today. 

And birthing a much more toxic culture where disrespecting women is commonplace and hitting them a thing to be enjoyed and celebrated. No wonder the rise in cases of domestic violence during lockdown! 

Let's be clear, if supporting domestic violence is the hill you wage your battles from, you've already lost the war. But this isn't even about which side is correct or even winning. 

Rather, it's about the disgusting depths trolls can stoop to. It's about how usual has trolling become on social media, that it no longer shocks or angers us. 

Trolling
Source: Network world

And in most of the cases, no matter the incident, women become the subject of vicious and incessant trolling (as rape threats, threats of assault, etc.) online. Sometimes, for merely existing on social media. 

Infographics in trolling
Source: The Hindu

No wonder then that today, something as heinous as domestic violence, has become just another tool trolls can use to attack women online. 

Domestic Violence
Source: The Week

More than anything else though, this behavior can simply not be ignored.

While Twitter 'withheld' certain accounts in India in the recent past, no such action was taken against any of the troll accounts that viciously attacked and encouraged abuse on Rihanna. 

Twitter Hate Coduct Policy
Source: Twitter

The very fact that something like this happened in the first place is vile, disgusting, hateful, but most of all, genuinely threatening. 

It's frightening that something as vicious and rampant as domestic violence is not only being 'understood', but even celebrated - simply because it's directed at a person whose views you don't agree with.

Infographic on trolling
Source: business2community

If this is the state of affairs in 2021, then the future paints a disheartening picture indeed.