T.I. will not buy coffee from Starbucks anytime soon. Yesterday TMZ stopped the outspoken Atlanta rap veteran outside of LAX and asked him for comment about the two black men who were arrested at a Philadelphia Starbucks, simply for waiting for their other friend to arrive before purchasing anything. T.I.’s answer was simple: Vote with your dollar.
I think that we should reserve our right to stop spending our money in places that don’t respect us equally. I think that until they have made some progressive steps to let us know that they plan on rectifying the situation, I don’t see no other answer. I think that if there is one thing that America is showing us, there is two ways that you can get their attention: The loss of life, and the loss of finances. And there’s just too much that has been left undone when it come to us being treated equally and fairly in this country. I don’t have nothing personally against Starbucks. I don’t hold nothing against their shareholders or their franchise participants. But the greater good, man, that is my priority.
T.I. was also aware of the company’s apology, though he hadn’t accepted it. “Every time we’ve been slighted, every time we’ve been disrespected, every time we’ve been devalued, every time we’ve been disregarded, it’s always just a tweet or an apology and ‘Oh, it’s cool,'” he added. “Naw, naw. There needs to be real action taken.”
Philadelphia resident Melissa DePino’s video of the incident has been viewed 10 million times. The footage has since sparked protests outside that very Starbucks, featuring signs with slogans like “Too Little Too Latte.” Meanwhile, DePino says that she was so struck by the racial profiling, she won’t go to that location again. “No. I can’t,” she said to Philadelphia magazine. “And it’s right around the corner from my house.”