- (Photo: Reuters/Mike Segar)
Jay-Z, the rapper who has recently headlined two charity performances at New York City's Carnegie Hall, is under fire for the lack of monetary contributions that he makes to his own charitable organization.
The 42-year-old rapper born Shawn Carter recently had his tax records examined and partially displayed by The Daily. According to the publication, the music mogul earned $63 million in 2010, but he only contributed $6,431 to his own Shawn Carter Scholarship Fund.
The publication reported that Jay-Z's wife, Beyonce Knowles, made no monetary contributions despite her $87 million in earnings estimated by Forbes. Despite the information garnered from Jay-Z's tax records, Jana Fleishman, the rapper's representative, said he has contributed to his organization in various ways.
"Jay, along with his family, provided office support, overhead support, [mother] Mrs. Gloria Carter's 100% effort and time, computers, FedEx expenses, accounting, and treasury function support," Fleishman wrote in an email to The Daily. "This was at no cost to the charity."
The rapper has recently been at the helm of various projects benefiting charity, including two concerts at Carnegie Hall that donated proceeds to the Shawn Carter Scholarship Foundation and The United Way of New York City. Carter's Roc Nation company will also host a benefit concert for the Children's Orthopaedic Center and The Mark Taper–Johnny Mercer Artists Program at Children's Hospital Los Angeles on Feb. 12.
Trevor Neilson, co-founder of Global Philanthropy Group, said Jay-Z's ability to contribute to charity extends beyond direct monetary donations.
"Jay-Z's power to make a difference on these issues does not lie on his checkbook; it's about his ability to make things cool, his ability to mobilize young people," Neilson said in The Daily report.
However, this is not the first time people have questioned the rapper's charitable contributions. In November, Jay-Z became the unofficial face of "Occupy Wall Street," as a part of the one percent that protesters were fighting against.
Protesters were upset with the rapper-turned-mogul after Jay-Z decided to capitalize on the "Occupy Wall Street" movement by creating a T-shirt line that did not donate any profits to the national protest movement.
The shirts were created under the rapper's Rocawear label. Playing on the phrase "Occupy Wall Street," the shirt had the "w" crossed out in red with a red "s" also placed at the end of the word "street." The T-shirt read: "Occupy All Streets."
Jodie Blum, co-founder and former executive director of hip-hop artist Common's charitable foundation, said despite a celebrity's influences, they should contribute to their own charitable organizations.
"If celebs are going to start their own charity it's their responsibility to write their own check," Blum said in The Grio report on Jay-Z's charity. "It's not credible to ask other people to donate if they are not."