"She was just disgusted," said Wright-Williams, who has always told her girls that if a boy lays a hand on them to tell their father. "She said she didn't know why he would hit her, what would it make it OK. She has the notion that no one would ever hit her [Imani] because she would break them in half. "
Kuae Kelch Mattox was surprised that her 9-year-old son Cole's third-grade classmates were all aware of Brown's arrest. "They are obviously plugged into the news of what happens with these celebrities," the Montclair, N.J., stay-at-home mom said.
Her message to them: "Let's withhold judgment until we hear the whole story. He's innocent until proven guilty."
Her son, Cole, has already changed his opinion, though. "I never heard anything bad about him," he said. "After hearing about this story, Chris Brown isn't any better than Lil Wayne. Now they are both practically bad guys. If he's actually proven guilty, he should actually go to jail and no one should ever listen to his music."
Antona Smith, a St. Louis stay-at-home mother, believes some of the focus should be on Rihanna as well. "She has to heal. She definitely needs to go to counseling," she said. "I hope the music industry, especially hip-hop, will look at some of the messages they send out about men and women. They are not the only young couple dealing with domestic violence and control. There's a great opportunity here to talk about this."
Author Rebecca Walker, who writes a blog for TheRoot.com, agreed that the focus should be on domestic abuse.
"I am more disappointed by the response to the incident than the incident itself," she told ABCNews.com. "It should be used as an opportunity to discuss violence in general, and domestic violence in particular. It's a good place to begin a conversation about how love shouldn't hurt, and how victims of abuse themselves often become abusers if they don't get proper support.
"Ultimately, this issue transcends gender, race, class, etc.," she said. "This is about relationships and what healthy ones look like. It's about intimacy and how little we, as a culture, know about cultivating and maintaining it. It's about love, what it is, and what it isn't."
Rihanna's father, Ronald Fenty, told People magazine that he expects his daughter to address the issue. "At some point, she will speak out," he said. "I hope she will stand up for women all over the world."
As for Brown's salvaging his once clean-cut image and role model status, Wright-Williams said, "I think he could still be a role model for 'I totally messed up and I will never be accused of this again.' Or he could be found guilty and be the model of what you don't want: You hit women, you get arrested and lose endorsements.
"Thank God we're not hinging on Chris Brown for our one and only role model," she said. "We can easily turn to our new president."