These details from the past could supply some much needed context to the controversial partnership with the NFL.
ideo of Jay-Z discussing what he sees as social justice issues earlier this year has resurfaced online, prompting some people on social media to claim that footage may have been the first hint that he planned to team up with the NFL. The footage from a media event with New England Patriots owner Bob Kraft, Van Jones and others was the latest ammunition for people who have been upset with Jay’s partnership with the NFL that many have said undercut Colin Kaepernick’s own social justice movement against the pro football league.
In the video from January, which didn’t seem like a big deal at the time, Jay — along with rapper Meek Mill, Kraft, Philadelphia 76ers co-owner Michael Rubin, Brooklyn Nets co-owner Clara Wu Tsai and others to launch the Reform Alliance to address criminal justice issues — spoke about topics that, especially in retrospect, seemed to run counter with many things the rapper has espoused in his lyrics.
At the time, Jay seemed to blame single parent households for negative police relations with Black people, defended jailing with discretion and sympathized with “hard working” taxpayers who pay for jails.
Nevermind how Jay-Z has rapped extensively about his single mother raising him and his own exploits as a drug kingpin years ago. Does that mean he thinks he should be jailed?
That irony was not missed by folks on social media after they saw the video.
Of course, those fateful words came one month before Kaepernick — the free agent quarterback who claims the NFL blacklisted him for his silent kneeling protest during the playing of the national anthem to bring attention to police brutality against Black people — settled with the league and withdrew his grievance.