50 Cent Blames New York Post for ’40 Day’ Cancellation
On Aug. 17, the New York Post published a story quoting anonymous police officials and panicked Queens, N.Y. residents over the potential violence that could erupt at 50 Cent's intended "40 Day" family event. The free, charity concert, scheduled for Aug. 30, was to take place on the PS 40 school grounds in the Queens neighborhood where the rapper grew up.
After a frenzy of media coverage, Mayor Bloomberg stepped in to assuage fears, assuring the public that 50 would not perform at the event. His announcement was received with disapproval from G-Unit member Tony Yayo, as well as fellow hip-hop artist and Queens native Q-Tip, who both condemned the mayor for getting in the way of 50's charitable cause.
After all the bad press, 50 finally decided to cancel the event "indefinitely," but after his Six Flags benefit concert this weekend, the Queens rapper cleared the air, telling MTV News that Bloomberg had been supportive of the show and only decided that it could be dangerous after the NY Post put the public spotlight on the concert.
"People will point to Bloomberg and immediately think that I would be upset with Mayor Bloomberg or the governor, and both of them wanted me to have the actual event," 50 said. "They told me not to promote the event, and then it got national coverage. Then the fear factor comes in." 50 said that after the sudden publicity, he fully understood the mayor's safety concerns. "He's gonna look at the police commissioner and ask, 'Is this gonna be a safe situation?" 50 said. "And if they tell him no, then it's not gonna happen."
50 didn't spare words for the Post, however, saying that the paper contributed heavily to the fear that built up around the event. "Why are they reporting [about] an event that hasn't taken place yet?" he asked. "Did no one get killed that day? Did no accidents happen that day? Why are they so interested? Because they know they can sell newspapers that way."
50 concluded that after the widespread publicity, it would be difficult to reschedule the event and expressed his disappointment that neighborhood kids had to suffer because of it. "I attempted to create Family Day in my actual neighborhood for the kids that couldn't get chaperones to bring them on the actual buses to enjoy this," he said. "'Cause I'm one of those kids that wouldn't have had a chaperone. I understand what it's like to have people come back and say, 'Yo, it was crazy,' and they enjoyed the festivities there and to kind of be disappointed to have not been a part of it. I thought it all the way through and decided to finish up in the actual neighborhood."