Ms. Tina detailed the interaction, saying she corrected the woman and let her know that Jay-Z is a businessman.
She has been a fierce protector of her family and as her tree has grown, Tina Knowles-Lawson has gone to bat for Jay-Z. The Rap icon emerged from the projects and now, he not only sits at game-changing tables but he owns them. Jay-Z’s reach has been studied, applauded, and envied, but no matter how much he accomplishes, there are certain people who can only see him through one lens.
In a segment of the Discovery+ docuseries Profiled: The Black Man, Knowles-Lawson recalled an incident where she was confronted by a woman who questioned why she would allow Beyoncé to marry a “gangster rapper.”
“I can remember getting on a plane and an older white woman saying, ‘Oh, your son is a gangster rapper, right? How did you let him marry your daughter?'” Lawson recalled. “And it was just shocking to me and I said, ‘No, actually, my son is a CEO.’ She didn’t think of him as a CEO or even a talented celebrity that was a great businessman… At that time, I remember thinking, I can’t be mad at her because that is what the media portrays.”
Later, Knowles elaborated on the story when she caught up with PEOPLE.
“I was very happy to educate her,” Knowles-Lawson said. At that time, Jay-Z was CEO of Def Jam. “She apologized at the end, and she said, ‘I’m sorry. I just hear that.’ And I said, ‘Yes, you assume, but you really should go and do some research on it because, no, he’s a CEO of a record label.’ And I was like, ‘He’s a very good person. He gives, he helps people.'”