“Beat the pu–y up like Emmett Till,” Wayne rapped on Future’s “Karate Chop (Remix). And because of it he lost a major paycheck from Pepsi.
“We do not plan any additional work with Lil Wayne moving forward,” a rep for the soft drink giant said in a statement to MTV News. “His offensive reference to a revered civil rights icon does not reflect the values of our brand.”
“We also support blocking and banning the endorsements,” a Till representative said on camera. “I’ve maintained through February, Don’t do the Dew. His biggest endorsement is through Pepsi’s Mountain Dew. Stop buying it, stop lining his pockets. People are outraged because they feel that he should apologize to our family.”
Wayne then issued a mea culpa to the family, “acknowledging” his lyrical miscue in the spirit of “word play,” but his attempt at making amends was panned by the family as a pseudo-apology, prompting them to seek further disciplinary action that would hit him where it hurts most: his wallet.
“While it’s commendable that he has vowed to respect the legacy of Emmett Till and his memory to ‘not use or reference Emmett Till or the Till family in his music,’ this statement falls short of an apology, as none is mentioned,” Airicka Gordon-Taylor, a Till family representative told TMZ.
Lil Wayne issued an written apology to the Till family but they weren’t moved by the open letter. ”While it’s commendable that he has vowed to respect the legacy of Emmett Till and his memory to ‘not use or reference Emmett Till or the Till family in his music,’ this statement falls short of an apology, as none is mentioned,” Airicka Gordon-Taylor, a Till family representative told TMZ Wednesday.
Dear Till Family:
As a recording artist, I have always been interested in word play. My lyrics often reference people, places and events in my music, as well as the music that I create for or alongside other artists.
It has come to my attention that lyrics from my contribution to a fellow artist’s song has deeply offended your family. As a father myself, I cannot imagine the pain that your family has had to endure. I would like to take a moment to acknowledge your hurt, as well as the letter you sent to me via your attorneys.
Moving forward, I will not use or reference Emmett Till or the Till family in my music, especially in an inappropriate manner. I fully support Epic Record’s decision to take down the unauthorized version of the song and to not include the reference in the version that went to retail. I will not be performing the lyrics that contain that reference live and have removed them from my catalogue.
I have tremendous respect for those who paved the way for the liberty and opportunities that African-Americans currently enjoy. As a business owner who employs several African-American employees and gives philanthropically to organizations that help youth to pursue their dreams my ultimate intention is to uplift rather than degrade our community.
Dwayne Michael Carter Jr.