As if the collection of tweets following Chris Brown‘s Grammy performance wasn’t enough to convey lax attitudes about domestic abuse, consider a recent statement by Hugh Hefner. Martson Hefner, his 21-year-old son, was arrested this week for assaulting his girlfriend, 2011 Playmate of the Year, Claire Sinclair. He has been released on $20,000 bail and his girlfriend obtained an emergency restraining order. And yet Hugh Hefner responded that if the two kids really love each other, they would get back together.
The mogul told People magazine:
“If they care about each other, they’ll patch it up.”
This type of language attempts to sweep battery under the rug of a “lover’s quarrel” and fails to recognize domestic abuse as a crime — and he isn’t alone. Claire expressed to E! News that she was “offended” that no one from the Hefner family had reached out to her for support during her ordeal. Yet in the same breath, the 20-year-old said that she “understood” that the Hefners protecting their name would be top priority over assault, illustrating how culturally accepting we are of domestic abuse:
“In one aspect, I’m ridiculously offended by the way things are being handled, on the other aspect, I understand. It’s family. And they’re looking out for their name, and I understand that but they need to at least, recognize what has happened and apologize for what has happened.”
The Playmate has also announced that she will not be pressing charges herself and wants her boyfriend to get psychiatric help and release a public apology. She also wants to him to admit that he has been physically abusive throughout their relationship.
Later, Hugh tweeted his distaste for his son’s actions, writing:
“I’m really disappointed in my son Marston’s behavior & have expressed my support to Claire.”
But although multiple outlets have reported on Hugh condemning his son’s actions on Twitter, the tweet now appears to have been deleted. Perhaps Hefner rescinded his disapproval for his son’s behavior, or maybe Hef just violated that fundamental PR rule of “never admit wrongdoing.” But either way, his disappointment in his son following the battery of his girlfriend is now, upon second thought, not something he wants public.
You didn’t need to convince me that Hugh Hefner, who has created an entire empire exploiting women, didn’t necessarily care all too much about their well-being. But his actions following his son’s woman-beating charges demonstrate that he doesn’t have much of a problem with violence against women either. And like father, like son.