Why Didn’t Jay Z Wear the Eric Garner Tees That He Himself Gave To the Nets?

December 9, 2014 | Prachi Gupta

On Monday night, the Barclays Center in Brooklyn might as well been the center of the universe. There were protesters, NBA players, rap royalty, a real life prince, a duchess, and a whole lot of media. As the masses gathered outside to protest a Staten Island jury’s decision to not indict NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo in the death of unarmed black man Eric Garner, it was Jay Z who brought the activism indoors.

The hip hop mogul, who has made a career out of artfully rapping about his many run-ins with the NYPD (who even kept a secret file on him), hand-delivered “I Can’t Breathe” t-shirts to Brooklyn Nets players. Some of the Cleveland Cavaliers also wore a version of the tees during pre-game warm-ups to make a powerful statement: they stand in solidarity with Garner.

But here’s a question: Why didn’t Jay himself wear one? Many fans and Twitter users are asking after he appeared with the players in a symbolic photo wearing just a black tee:

(Photos: DreamHampton)