Republican representative Mario Diaz-Balart criticized Jay-Z for joining the group of artists who are refusing to perform in Florida after the outcome of the Zimmerman trial, pointing out the hypocrisy of the hip-hop artist and his wife’s decision to boycott the state after vacationing in Communist Cuba earlier this year.
“Look, thank God we live in a free country, and people can opt to be silly and foolish, but that’s a contrast – they go to Cuba, and that’s okay,” the congressman told Laura Ingraham on her Tuesday radio program. “They hobnob with the regime; that’s okay. But they won’t go to Florida, where they’re free,” he said.
According to the Huffington Post, Justin Timberlake, Jay-Z, Rihanna, Kanye West, and Madonna, among others, have gotten on board with the boycott of Florida over its Stand Your Ground laws. Stevie Wonder announced the boycott the Sunday after George Zimmerman’s acquittal, promising that he wouldn’t perform in Florida until Stand Your Ground was repealed in the state.
Jay-Z and his wife’s Cuba excursion in April inspired criticism from GOP lawmakers at the time, with some contending the trip may have been — or should have been – in violation of the U.S. embargo of the country.