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An Open Letter To Jay-Z: One Thing You possibly can Say About Barneys That might Matter
It’s unlucky but, ultimately, Jay-Z, you are going to must say one thing.
No one should blame you for cutting a promotional deal — launching an exclusive holiday collection — with Barneys just before a racial profiling scandal exploded at the luxury Manhattan division store. As one in every of your most well-known songs reminds us, you’re not a thoughts-reader.
However they’ll blame you. Timing is all the things and the seeming hypocrisy of a rapper who’s rhymed about racial profiling and police misconduct now selling a $33,000 watch at the infamous division store is simply too juicy of a headline to ignore.
And, to be truthful, it has been a number of days now since the information broke that Trayon Christian, a 19-year-outdated engineering pupil from Queens, is suing Barneys and the NYPD for racial discrimination after purchasing a $349 Ferragamo belt from the shop. He was stopped simply after exiting, handcuffed and detained in a jail cell till the police ran out of causes to keep holding him.
It’s been a number of days, too, because the follow-up story of Kayla Phillips, a 21-12 months-outdated nursing student, who was swarmed by undercover cops after shopping for a designer handbag at the same retailer back in February. She too ferragamo riviera sneakers is planning to sue Barneys and the police.
Barneys itself has gone into crisis management mode, issuing an announcement acknowledging that the therapy of the 2 buyers was unacceptable and hiring a civil rights lawyer to steer a evaluate of its fairness and equality practices.
But still no words from you, Jay-Z — one of the most prolific wordsmiths of a era.
To be sincere with you, I could not care much less whether you keep Barneys’ cash. It will not change a actuality of more than seven hundred,000 folks — largely Black and Latino — stopped and frisked by the NYPD in a single 12 months. It won’t change the reality that our tradition encourages the criminalization of communities ferragamo riviera sneakers of shade. But I do believe that you just, along with the remainder of Black America, need to know extra about what’s taking place exterior these division store windows — so many unanswered questions stay.
We should know extra about the opposite 50 folks arrested near the retail outlet — who they’re, the racial make-up of the group. Whether they had been finally charged or let go And what was Barneys’ position, if any, in those arrests
That is why ColorOfChange members are calling on NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly to conduct a full investigation into the arrests. Others are speaking out as well. Rev. Sharpton and the Nationwide Motion Network have demanded a meeting with Barneys’ executives and a Change.org petition, urging you to reconsider your contract has already made headlines.
Do you have to break your silence, maybe you could possibly speak out and join us in holding the NYPD accountable too.
It may be only a forty five-minute subway experience from Brooklyn to the Barneys flagship on the Higher East Facet, but you of all individuals know just how long that journey actually feels. Throughout your career, you’ve been the voice of a generation of Black males who each day endure profiling and harassment from police officers.
Why stop speaking now
Rashad Robinson is govt director of ColorOfChange — the nation’s largest online civil rights group. If you treasured this article and you also would like to obtain more info with regards to August please visit our own webpage. Signal the online petition demanding an NYPD investigation into the arrests right here.