Jay-Z's Occupy Wall Street T-Shirts: What THR's Readers Are Saying
Jay-Z came under heavy criticism last week when news broke that the rapper-mogul was releasing a line of T-shirts in support of Occupy Wall Street but that profits would not be shared with protesters.
Jay-Z was seen wearing one of the shirts recently, which modified the “Occupy Wall Street” phrase by crossing out the “w” and adding an additional “s” at the end to read “Occupy All Streets.”
And pal Russell Simmons even tweeted that he had one of the shirts.
But many other had strong reactions to the new, with so many upset about the "irony" that he wasn't sharing profits with the demonstrators, who are protesting corporate greed.
“Jay-Z, as talented as he is, has the political sensibility of a hood rat and is a scrotum," one of the leaders of the Occupy Wall Street protests said. "To attempt to profit off of the first important social moment of 50 years with an overpriced piece of cotton is an insult to the fight for economic civil rights known as #occupywallstreet.”
As a result of the outcry, the rapper's Rocawear clothing label removed the line from sale on its official website Friday.
The Hollywood Reporter's readers were mixed about Jay-Z's original decision to sell the shirts without sharing any of the profits. The story has received hundreds of comments from people both for and against.
A sample of those supporting the rapper:
Nothing strange about that. The entire OWS movement is about money. Other People Money.....I say let ingenuity be rewarded, let laziness be punished or ignored. If yu want something out of life, work for it, Microsoft started as 1 mans idea, Apple started in a garage as one mans idea. Why punish them. they are the epitome of the American Dream
OWS wishes to make slaves out of the rich; forcing them to surrender a portion of their wealth so it fulfills the whims of the mob. Instead, one should go and create wealth with one's own mind and means of production, rather than living off the fruits of another's labor.
Why should he spread the wealth with people who do nothing buy trash up a city park? Maybe they can cut a deal to help him sell the shirts and grab a piece of the pie
Yeppers, that's what these Uneducated individuals want..they dont want to work..they want "the Corporations to share their Wealth"......... remember now, barack discussed this on the campaign trail..with Joe the Plummer.... SHARE the wealth has been Baracks message since day one, who would have thought that anyone was listening to him???? Now due to barack and his class warfare, he's brain washed this ignorant protestors.......the Blood is on Baracks hands..sadly these fools dont know they've just been played..
Tekk (in response to another commenter)
The Guy is a multi Millionaire.. Make money to Support his family GIVE US A BREAK!! He is Capitilizing on the Movement and nothing eles
On the other side of the debate:
Todd Clemmer (replying to another commenter)
You do understand that there is extreme irony when one "cashes in" on a movement (that they support) that is AGAINST "cashing in" and then refuses to spread the wealth which is the basis of that movement right?
Jay-Z is rapidly losing any street cred he might have had. One thing the 99% DON'T need is more money-hungry bastards trying to turn a profit on us. If a small-time indie artist like Beltaine's Fire can afford to donate all proceeds from their new album's sales to OWS, someone like Jay who's already made more money then anyone needs or deserves could afford to kick down. This is shameful.
It's the hypocrisy he's exhibiting. He supports the Occupy movement yet sells T-shirts (that are probably made overseas) that CAPITALIZE on the Occupy movement....and the kicker, he's giving no proceeds from the shirt sales to the movement. You don't find that f'd up? Please. Like Mike Moore down there saying he's not in the 1%. It's a big joke. But do I support Jay Z's right to be a capitalist and sell shirts leveraging the occupy movement, darn sure I do! I think it's funny and completely fine for him to do so. It's just pathetically hyocritical and any fan of Jay Z should see that he has one cocnern and interest, that's money. Which is fine by me.
Jack Cordero (in response to another commenter)
The man has an estimated net worth of 300+ million in his bank account, not to mention he makes MILLIONS peddling his garbage "clothing line". The point is if you as a "celebrity" are going to show your ugly face in "support" of this protesters, then don't make a cheap attempt at making money out of the situation because the point of the protesting is OPPOSING CORPORATE GREED, YOU SCHMUCK!
Truthtodeath (referencing one of Jay-Z's hits)
i got 99 problems and Jay-Z's 1