- (Photo: Danny Moloshok / Reuters)
Lil Wayne's sponsorship with Mountain Dew is reportedly being targeted by the family of the late Emmett Till, who has spoken out about the rapper's lyrics that include a metaphor using the slain teenager as a sexual reference.
"Bout to put rims on my skateboard wheels / Beat that (expletive) up like Emmett Till," Wayne rhymed on a remixed version of fellow rapper Future's "Karate Chop."
Till, a black teenager, was killed in 1955 after allegedly whistling at a white woman, which sparked racial tension in the United States. After the "Karate Chop" lyrics were leaked by Lil Wayne, the 30-year-old rapper born Dewayne Carter, Till's family called for an apology.
While Wayne has yet to apologize to the Till family, the slain teenager's relatives are not taking things lightly. Although the song was removed by Epic Records and never released for commercial sales, Till's family is looking to go after a major brand that endorses the rapper, according to AllHipHop.com reports.
"Since, the rapper has not apologized, the Till family have told AllHipHop.com exclusively that they intend to pressure Lil Wayne's sponsors, namely Mountain Dew," AllHipHop.com wrote. "Shortly, the Till Family are expected to make offensive moves forward to further address Wayne and Mountain Dew, a product of PepsiCo."
The news comes weeks after major sports apparel brand Reebok cut ties with rapper Rick Ross, 37, for his lyrics that seemed to promote rape.
Reebok released a statement about their decision to cut ties with Ross.
"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," Reebok said in a statement to Billboard. "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 this time, it is in everyone's best interest for Reebok to end its partnership with Mr. Ross."
The decision came one week after UltraViolet, a community of individuals fighting for women's rights, protested along with dozens of women who presented thousands of petitions and signs that read, "Hey Reebok-- Want my business? Stop promoting rape. Drop Rick Ross."