Saturday, October 26, 2013

Jay Z Releases Statement Regarding Barneys Petition

I personally have been waiting on Jay Z to respond to this whole Barneys situation. He's come under attack by supporters of the young man who was "racially profiled" at the mega store recently. A black male had saved up money to purchase a $300 belt. He was questioned by police and arrested for a belt he actually bought because it was assumed he'd stolen it.

Jay- who has plans to release a holiday collection with the store set to benefit the Shawn Carter Foundation,  immediately became the focus of attention. Would JayZ drop "his" deal in protest? Is he once again "selling out" and not "standing up for the rights of black people?". Not only has the scrutiny come from his own people, but The New York Daily News blasted him in Friday's paper saying how much "respect he'd lose" if he didn't pull out of the deal.

Well, today ..Jay responded on his site The Life and Times to address the fallacies in this incredible story perpetuated by most of the media. Read his statement below:

This collaboration lives in a place of giving and is about the Foundation. I am not making a dime from this collection; I do not stand to make millions, as falsely reported. I need to make that fact crystal clear. The Shawn Carter Foundation is the beneficiary and the foundation is receiving 25% of all sales from the collaboration, 10% of all sales generated in the store on November 20th and an additional donation from Barneys. This money is going to help individuals facing socio-economic hardships to help further their education at institutions of higher learning. My idea was born out of creativity and charity… not profit. 
I move and speak based on facts and not emotion. I haven’t made any comments because I am waiting on facts and the outcome of a meeting between community leaders and Barneys. Why am I being demonized, denounced and thrown on the cover of a newspaper for not speaking immediately? The negligent, erroneous reports and attacks on my character, intentions, and the spirit of this collaboration have forced me into a statement I didn’t want to make without the full facts. Making a decision prematurely to pull out of this project, wouldn’t hurt Barneys or Shawn Carter, but all the people that stand a chance at higher education. I have been working with my team ever since the situation was brought to my attention to get to the bottom of these incidents and at the same time find a solution that doesn’t harm all those that stand to benefit from this collaboration. 
I am against discrimination of any kind, but if I make snap judgements, no matter who it’s towards, aren’t I committing the same sin as someone who profiles? I am no stranger to being profiled and I truly empathize with anyone that has been put in that position. Hopefully this brings forth a dialogue to effect real change. – Shawn “JAY Z” Carter

The CEO of Barneys Mark Lee offered an apology:
No one should go through the unacceptable experiences described by Trayon Christian and Kayla Phillips in recent media reports, and we offer our deepest sympathies to them both. Barneys New York has zero tolerance for any form of discrimination and we are committed to treating everyone who comes into our stores with respect and dignity
Some are still making Jay Z the focus of their anger in this situation. These types of situations happen all of the time, and some people will never be satisfied with any resolution. Glad to get an apology and explanation from these two men.

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