Reebok Drops Rick Ross Over Controversial Lyrics

Sneaker brand ends endorsement deal with Rozay following protests.

Posted: 04/11/2013 05:50 PM EDT
Rick Ross

Troubles continue to mount for Maybach Music Group commander-in-chief Rick Ross, as athletic apparel brand Reebok announced today that they are cutting ties with the Miami rapper.

The company's decision comes in light of Ross' recent lyrics on Rocko's "U.O.E.N.O.," in which he seemingly raps about drugging and having his way with a girl. The lyrics are as follows:

"Put Molly all in the champagne. She ain't even know it / I took her home and enjoyed that. She ain't even know it."

In a statement to celebrity news site TMZ, Reebok explained their decision to part ways with the multi-platinum rapper.

"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."

The statement continued, "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."

Ross offered what many feel was a half-hearted apology after defending the lyrics on New Orleans radio station Q93 by pointing out that the word "rape" wasn't used. The statement read, "I don't condone rape. Apologies for the lyric interpreted as rape."

A short time later, he added a follow up (but equally generic) statement via Twitter, "Apologies to my many business partners who would never promote violence against women." The controversial lyrics have since been removed from the song, but critics continue to lambast the bearded baritone.

Fellow rappers Meek Mill and Tyga have come to Ross' defense, but others, such as Talib Kweli, hold firm that Ross' words should not be condoned.

 

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(Photo: Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images for Reebok)

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