Californian high school turns down $10,000 prize and a visit from Macklemore

Aliso Niguel High School received complaints from parents for 'misogyny' and 'drug use' in the hip-hop duo's music

A Californian high school has turned down a $10,000 (£6,560) grant and a visit from rap duo Macklemore and Ryan Lewis citing ‘misogyny’ and ‘drug use’ in their music as the reason behind the decision.

Last week (Oct 7), students from Aliso Niguel High School discovered they had won a competition on school textbook website The competition encouraged students to register on the site.

Announced as winners of the ‘Chegg + Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ competition, the school were offered a visit from Macklemore and Ryan Lewis plus a $10,000 (£6,560) grant for the school music department.


As reported by Stereogum, the prize was turned down by the school’s administrators following complaints from a number of parents that “Macklemore and Ryan Lewis support alcohol and drug use and misogyny in their music”.

GettyBen Bentley/NME

On Monday evening (Oct 12) a petition to reverse the decision was posted on “Unfortunately, a few parents ruined a chance of a lifetime for a few thousand,” it reads. The petition contains a letter to the school’s Principal Christensen and has received over 5,600 signatures (correct at the time of publishing).

School student Quinn Darling took to instagram to share his feelings over the decision. “I believe admin has made a huge mistake. I am personally offended by their decision as it is based on outdated evidence,” he wrote. “I am here to say our voice matters and we have been robbed of this amazing opportunity,” he continued, before ending with the hashtag #bringbackmack.

Meanwhile, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis recently released ‘Growing Up (Sloane’s Song)’, which features Ed Sheeran and celebrates the birth of Macklemore’s daughter. Earlier this year, the pair recorded a child-friendly version of his hit single ‘Thrift Shop’ alongside Oscar The Grouch for kids’ TV show, Sesame Street.

In Oscar’s version of the song, he promotes wearing litter as an outfit with the line, “I’m gonna pop some tags, only got twenty dollars in my pocket” replaced by “I’m gonna pop some trash, only got seven bags in my trash can.”


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