Women's rights groups are celebrating a big win. According to TMZ, rapper Rick Ross was released from his contract with sneaker giant Reebok after not stepping up to the plate and tackling the backlash from his lyrics on the song, "U.O.E.N.O." On the record by rapper Rocko, which Ross is featured on, he raps, "Put molly all in her champagne, she ain’t even know it/ I took her home and I enjoyed that, she ain’t even know it. He never actually says the word "rape," but his lyrics translated into date rape.
"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," a rep for Reebok told the gossip site. "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."
At the height of the uproar, Ross made an apology, but many rejected it, including women's rights community UltraViolet.
“We are thrilled to hear that Reebok is joining the fight against rape culture and dropping Rick Ross," says a rep from the group. "This is a huge victory for women, for the 526 survivors of rape who were brave enough to publicly confront rape culture, and for the nearly 100,000 UltraViolet members who have poured their hearts and time into this campaign. This sends a strong message that rapping about drugging and raping an unconscious woman is not only morally wrong, but has real consequences. After Steubenville, Americans expect and demand better. Thank you Reebok for taking a stand.”
Nearly 100,000 UltraViolet members signed a petition demanding Reebok drop Rick Ross, more than 10,000 called Reebok demanding action, more than 2,000 tweeted the company, and nearly 100 protested in front of Reebok’s NYC flagship just last week. See photos here: http://bit.ly/reebokprotest