Rapper Rick Ross’s apology for his pro-rape lyric was not enough for Reebok. After women’s group Ultraviolet petitioned the company with 71,000 signatures to drop Ross as a sponsor, the company released the following statement: “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.”
In Rocko’s song “U.O.E.N.O,” Ross raps: “Put Molly all up in her champagne, she ain’t even know it, I took her home and I enjoyed that, she ain’t even know it.”
Outcry built after women’s rights groups protested the lyric, even prompting rapper Talib Kweli to call Ross “a misguided 40-year-old person.”
Ross argued that the lyric wasn’t condoning rape because it didn’t mention the word “rape.” He later issued an unwhelming apology via Twitter, saying, “I dont condone rape. Apologies for the lyric interpreted as rape.”
Reebok said: “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.”
Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at email@example.com.