Boohoo Group’s menswear brand BoohooMan has axed controversial rapper DaBaby from its marketing activity following his homophobic rant at the weekend which was widely condemned for fuelling stigma around HIV.
The rapper, real name Jonathan Lyndale Kirk, told the crowd at the Rolling Loud Miami festival: “If you didn’t show up today with HIV, AIDS, any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that’ll make you die in two or three weeks, put your cellphone light up.”
He also said: “Ladies, if your p***y smell like water, put a cellphone light them up. Fellas, if you ain’t sucking d**k in the parking lot put your cellphone light up. Keep it real.”
On Monday, DaBaby attempted to defend his rant via Instagram Stories, in which he said the backlash was a “weak ass internet issue” and that none of his gay fans are living with HIV or AIDS.
“I wasn’t going on a rant, that’s called a call to action, that’s what that’s called, cause I’m a live performer, I’m the best live performer… you interact with your fans, you get what I’m saying.
“All the lights went up, gay or straight, you want to know why? Cause even my gay fans don’t got f**king AIDS, stupid ass n****s.
“They don’t got AIDS, my gay fans, they take care of themselves, they ain’t no nasty gay n****s, they ain’t no junkies.”
He has since tweeted that his comments were “insensitive”, adding he had “no intentions [of] offending anybody” before offering “my apologies”.
However, it has all come too late to save DaBaby’s deal with BoohooMan, which only last month saw the release of a 100-piece capsule collection.
In a statement Boohoo said: “BoohooMan condemn the use of homophobic language and confirm we will no longer be working with DaBaby. Diversity and inclusion are part of the Boohoo Group’s DNA and we pride ourselves on representing the diverse customers we serve across the globe.
“We stand by and support the LGBTQ+ community, and do not tolerate any hate speech or discrimination in any form.”
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