The WAKE UP calls just keep on coming folks!
Last week it was reported that 19 year old African-American student Trayon Christian is suing department store Barneys for “allegedly” calling the police on him after he purchased a $350 designer belt in April. While leaving the store undercover detectives “allegedly” stopped him and asked, “how a young black man such as himself could afford to purchase such an expensive belt,”. The student was then handcuffed and held for 2 hours before being released without charge.
Another black customer Kayla Phillips went through a similar experience back in February after leaving the store with a $2,500 Céline handbag that she had just purchased. Phillips told the New York Post,
“As I was walking into the train station, four undercover police officers attacked me,”
“They asked me why I used a debit card and why it didn’t have my name on it,” she said of her temporary Bank of America card.
A frightened Phillips called her mom, who told The Post cops had asked, “What are you doing here in Manhattan? Where’d you get the money to buy that expensive bag?”
Her mother, Wendy Straker, said the police were clearly on the phone with a Barneys rep who was feeding them information about her daughter’s transaction.
When she showed police her ID and her new debit card, which had arrived in the mail that morning, they let her go.
Shawn Carter aka Jay Z has now been dragged in to this racism storm because the rapper/mogul is all set to release a limited holiday collection with Barneys. The store will sell items by top designers, inspired by Jay-Z , with some of the proceeds going to his charity. He is also working with the store to create its artistic holiday window display. 25% of the proceeds of sales will apparently go towards his Shawn Carter Foundation.
Fans, activists and online petitioners are now calling for the ‘Jigga Man’ to pull out of the deal with Barneys but those calls were met with silence. That is, until The New York Daily News went straight for the juggler with their brilliant front cover above.
In response to the newspaper’s front cover a rattled Carter via his publicist issued the following statement:
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.
So before Carter makes a decision he is going to wait for the Rev Al Sharpton and other community leaders to get back to him with “FACTS” after their round table meeting with Barneys, when deep down he already knows that his business partners are guilty of racial profiling along with their cronies the NYPD (New York Police Department). He also knows that if he was not Mr Shawn ‘Jay Z’ Carter-Knowles, Barneys and the NYPD would force him to go through the same humiliating ritual.
Shawn Carter is a multimillionaire and so is his wife. The man is in a position financially where he can keep his foundation afloat with his OWN earnings. He does not need Barneys partnership or external donations to help him do this.
It is all just a load of rubbish. These so-called celebrity “charity foundations” are never quite what they seem.
But if Carter wants to continue working with Barneys then I say leave the fool to it. Forget about him black people, hit them in the pockets by taking your custom elsewhere and NEVER step foot inside Barneys again. It is as simple as that.