Reebok has dropped Miami rapper Rick Ross amid protests over his rape rap lyrics, the NY Times reports.
Ross, a former corrections officer, came under fire when he quipped about drugging a woman’s drink so he could have his way with her on the track “U.O.E.N.O. (You ain’t even know)” by Atlanta rapper/producer Rocko Da Don.
Put molly all in her champagne
She ain’t even know it
I took her home and I enjoyed that
she ain’t even know it
The backlash from feminist groups was swift. Rape victims expressed their outrage on social networks, and radio stations took the track out of rotation. On Wednesday, Rocko released a remix with Wiz Khalifa replacing Ross.
In announcing its decision, Reebok stated: “At this time, it is in everyone’s best interest for Reebok to end its partnership with Mr. Ross.”
The press release continued:
“Reebok holds our partners to a high standard, and we expect them to live up to the values of our brand. Unfortunately, Rick Ross has failed to do so. While we do not believe that Rick Ross condones sexual assault, we are very disappointed he has yet to display an understanding of the seriousness of this issue or an appropriate level of remorse.”
Woman’s group UltraViolet responded to Reebok’s announcement:
“We are thrilled to hear that Reebok is joining the fight against rape culture and dropping Rick Ross. This is a huge victory for women, for the 526 survivors of rape who were brave enough to publicly confront rape culture, and for the nearly 100,000 UltraViolet members who have poured their hearts and time into this campaign. This sends a strong message that rapping about drugging and raping an unconscious woman is not only morally wrong, but has real consequences. After Steubenville, Americans expect and demand better. Thank you Reebok for taking a stand.”