After Young Dolph was fatally gunned down in Memphis, Tennessee in November 2021, his girlfriend, Mia Jaye, launched Black Men Deserve to Grow Old — a clothing company that advocates for change. Following yesterday’s (Nov. 1) news of fellow rapper Takeoff’s death, she weighed in on how Black men’s lives are cut short too often.
“I am mentally, emotionally and physically drained… I am tired of the same ole s**t… like how many Black men have to die before something different takes place?” she asked on her Instagram Story after news of the fatality broke. Jaye added, “Peace, blessings and sincere prayers to Takeoff’s family… my heart throbs for you and us all.” The following message was a repost from music producer Dre calling on the Black community to stop glorifying “negative stereotypes” in songs.
Dre’s post began, “First, I send my condolences to the family and friends of Takeoff. This has triggered me in a way I can’t even explain, and I’m [disappointed] in our people and our culture for continuing to feed into negative stereotypes.” He continued, “That being said, I will no longer participate in creating music that [pushes] any negative agenda to the ‘Black youth.’ I will no longer write [or] produce anything that harms Black people. Please do not call me for anything that doesn’t spread love or knowledge. I take this responsibility as a creative and money will no longer determine what I use my God-given gift for. Thank you.”
He captioned that post by saying, “I’m done with hurting my people. No amount of money will move me on this. If it promotes death, speaks down on our women [or] breaks the Black family, I don’t [want] nothing to do with it. If you wanna see change, you have to take the first step.” Takeoff’s untimely death served as a wake-up call to the community. When Jaye reposted Dre’s message, she added one of her own.
“I wonder how many artists, producers, music execs, videographers, etc. who influence [our] culture through music and art would be willing to take this type of stand? This amongst other things is the type of action that will garner change,” she wrote on her Instagram Story. On her clothing page, she paid homage to Takeoff with a post. It read, “Black men deserve to grow old. Today, this year, tomorrow and every day in between. Takeoff deserved to grow old. Nipsey deserved to grow old. Dolph deserved to grow old. The Black men in your lives deserve to grow old.”
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