For those of you who are not aware, Hip Hop mogul Jay Z has been under increasing pressure to sever ties with high end US retailer Barneys, New York after it was revealed that the store was undergoing a second lawsuit regarding charges of discrimination on two black customers.The two Barneys customers, Trayon Christian and Kayla Phillips, said this week they were detained by police after making expensive purchases.
Christian sued Barneys, saying he was accused of fraud after using his debit card to buy a $349 Ferragamo belt in April. Philips filed a notice of claim saying she would sue after she was stopped by detectives outside the store when she bought a $2,500 Celine handbag in February.
This weekend, Hov released a statement regarding his relationship with the outlet:
“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,”
Jigga was in fact due to release a new clothing line under the New York chain next month and, although he released a statement on his website declaring that he wasn’t “making a dime” from the project, it has sparked a lot of controversy. Now support for the rapper has come from an unlikely source; iconic civil rights leader Reverend Al Sharpton spoke to reporters at his National Action Network offices, stating that people should focus on Barneys, rather than make it all about Jay Z:
“Some people want to make this about Jay Z…No, this is about Barneys first…What is the collusion between the NYPD and your security that four blocks away from the store, the NYPD stops somebody that bought something in your store?…We call 911 and can’t get no response. Somebody spent over two grand, and you pick them up four blocks later.”
It’s going to be interesting to see what Jigga’s next move is. Even though the proceeds will be going to a good cause, his name is being tarnished over no fault of his own. Honestly, I believe that Jay-z Will not let what others think and feel influence his decision he will continue to do whats best for him and his image.