"Here we go again with another white person trying to take something from a Black person, even though they say they’re trying to help," says Anita "Lady A" White.
The Lady A trademark battle continues to heat up, as Anita "Lady A" White said in a new interview with Vulture that she is "not going to be erased." Her comments come one day after the band formerly known as Lady Antebellum filed suit against her over their now-shared name.
"I think they always knew what they were gonna do," White told the outlet, suggesting she believes the country trio had always intended to file suit to protect their trademark of the Lady A name for entertainment purposes.
"I was quiet for two weeks because I was trying to believe that it was going to be okay and that they would realize that it would be easier to just change their name, or pay me for my name," she said.
"You don't get to just come and take because you have that privilege," said White. "We don't have that luxury or that privilege, so we need somebody to help us and lift us up."
The new Lady A asserts that they've been using it interchangeably with Lady Antebellum for years already, and had even filed a trademark on Lady A in 2010. The band asserts that they have on interest in stopping White from using the name, they just want to protect their right to use it as well.
They said they felt they had no choice but to file suit after White's legal representation presented a demand for $10 million over it.
"I'm actually worth more than that, regardless of what they think," White said, referencing the half of the money she intended to keep for herself.
She explained that her intention was to use half of the $10 million to rebrand and start over, considering she lacks the backing of a major label and management team like the band enjoys. The other $5 million was to be donated to charities of her choice, including those supporting the Black Lives Matter movement.
"But here we go again with another white person trying to take something from a Black person, even though they say they're trying to help," she said. "If you want to be an advocate or an ally, you help those who you're oppressing. And that might require you to give up something because I am not going to be erased."
The former Lady Antebellum changed their name on June 11 in response to the Black Lives Matter movement because of associations between the word "antebellum" and romanticized imagery of the South built on slavery and racism.
They were seemingly unaware that White was already using the Lady A moniker and had been for more than 30 years. She has reportedly never filed a trademark claim on the name.
"We felt we had been brought together for a reason and saw this as living out the calling that brought us to make this change in the first place," the band said in their statement about their lawsuit against White.
"We're disappointed that we won’t be able to work together with Anita for that greater purpose," they continued. "We hope Anita and the advisers she is now listening to will change their minds about their approach. We can do so much more together than in this dispute."
White said that the band's offer in a Zoom call that they could share the name and the band would "assist [her] on social-media platforms, Amazon, iTunes, all that" ultimately "had no substance."
"What does that mean?" she wondered, even as the band was trumpeting the call as a rousing success, writing, "We are excited to share we are moving forward with positive solutions and common ground."
White was clearly never satisfied with their proposed solutions, though, saying she felt that the band's camp was trying to erase her.