Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Oh Lighten Up!

Australian advertisers are in the Poo because Americans don't play cricket. Unfortunately, poor judgement on behalf of the makers of this commercial for not researching their market and because clearly they thought every civilised nation has the same passion for cricket. Or at least knows that there is a game called cricket or even understand that not all blacks are AMERICAN . . .

The ad depicts an Aussie Cricket supporter (we know that because he's got the right shirt on), sitting at the West Indian end of a cricket stand (yes darlings, they don't like cricket . . they love it). He is without doubt a little out of place being an Australian team supporter and white. He breaks the ice with a bucket of KFC. This is one in a series of advertisements showing this poor dope sitting among his opponent's end and most are lame but for some reason, Americans think it's condescending, racist, stereotypical and in poor taste. I beg to differ.

Have you ever been to a soccer or cricket match where there have been Caribbean or South American spectators? They go OFF. I mean I WANT to sit at their end of the field. They drum, they dance, they chant, they turn the whole thing into a party.

The advertisement was withdrawn soon after screening but it certainly wasn't intended as racist. C'mon black America it's not about fried chicken or the deep south, there's no reference to slavery or 'rowdy booty'. It's just a fan . . a fish out of water . . sharing his KFC. Had he been a black man, would that have made it acceptable? Would you have felt more comfortable if he was handing out cucumber sandwiches and strawberries?

I know there have been injustices in the past, I know that many black Americans still endure the problems of poverty, history and marginalisation, much like the poor in my own country but jeez, there are a lot who enjoy the freedom and all that goes with it in middle class America. You've even got one for president.

Time to forget the civil war, get over slavery (crikey our country was formed on a bunch of thieves and murderers and now we hail the first fleet as a pioneering heroes - then we do celebrate a war we lost and love our bushrangers.)

For goodness sakes, I'm so over this sensitivity in relation to race - as long as we even 'notice' racial disparity, we'll never get over it. Oddly enough, the poverty stricken drunks and homeless near where I work are all white . .every one of them.

I'm actually sick and tired of feeling like I have to apologise for being English, white, and arguably middle class. I don't get my knickers in a twist when someone calls me a mongrel convict or suggests that I don't bathe frequently enough. Believe, me that was the case when I first emigrated here.





Erm, did you spot the girl shaking her booty in the guys face. Buggered if I can see it and I think one guy is wearing a Jamaican headband. Put me in there with the partygoers please because Cricket's so boring, it needs a bit of rhythm.


I think much like the British, the Aussies are very good at poking fun at themselves so this sort of criticism seems unthinkable. Then we're not known for our political correctness:




Although picking on New Zealanders . . .well that's just fair game:





Learn how to laugh at yourselves because really . . you're all very funny!

27 comments:

Brian Miller said...

yeah learning to laugh at one self is a great skill. much too serious these days you know...as far as race, i dont apologize for who i am, i just live in spite of...

nick said...

Yep, some people are way too sensitive. In what way was that ad demeaning black people? The crowd dancing and doing their thang, the guy offering some junk food - so what? And it was so short, if you blinked you missed it anyway....

Ocean Girl said...

Racist because the white guy is a boring dude? Things have gotten out of hand. We are racist, so what? Everybody, every group has their own traits, that make us different and make the world more colourful and it is a blessing, because we get to know one another.

JeffScape said...

Chuckling.

I remember when that thing first cause the uproar. I was really laughing my ass off, then.

Believe it or not, most of America couldn't care less about that commercial, as evidenced by the "controversy's" quick death here... it's just that extremely vocal minority who likes to point fingers that turns shit sideways.

ebony said...

I don't know... First people who didn't have rights fight to get them but too often they can't stop and they want more "rights"...

I don't know... Sometimes the people who want everyone to be politically correct don't even belong to the group that are being mistreated. I have to say that in America things are too um.. sensitive. And it's not just about black people... it's with every minority. and everything. but on the other hand is it fair to ask people to forget everything. It might be the right thing to do but I don't know...

Things are different in Europe but nonetheless too much is always too much. Like I don't believe in PC language. I don't mind if people call me black. I mean I'm not an African-American. But in my oppinion the N word is not a good one to use... It's like calling a short person a dwarf. To me it makes a person sound inferior. Gender-neutral words are rediculous. Being a fireMAN wouldn't be a problem to me?!

Terms relating to disability... 'visually challenged' sounds hypocrite. But it depends on how the (blind) person feels..

But one thing I hate is changing Christmas to Xmas or just 'Holiday'. I mean it's a Christian holiday? Why should someone feel insulted? One doesn't need to celebrate it! If Christians want to celebrate their festival, why do they have to change the name?! It's just not real. Why.. I mean.. Just to play it safe we should start sending Xannukkah and Xivali cards too, right?

I don't mean to insult anyone. There are so many ways to see stuff, really. But we should be rational! The most important thing is not to hurt someone on purpose.

lol

Kate said...

Well - if I am ever co-erced into attending a cricket match - I definitely want to sit with that lot!!!!

Jill said...

I should say that SOMEONE finds something to PICK OUT and TEAR apart in everything! ANNOYING...that is what it is!

Loved the videos!

Don't Bug Me! said...

I think the commentators for that show were just looking for it to be racist - they wanted it to be racist, otherwise, what would they have to comlain about? The big problem is, they have no idea about cricket or what it is like at a cricket match. OK, so I am white, middle class etc etc, but really, I am with you Baino - lightnen up! I am all for fighting real racism, but this is just a waste of time and effort.

laughingwolf said...

come getcher award...

Jen Chandler said...

Oh I agree. I so heartily agree. Grow up. It was a commercial. If people didn't harp on issues, they wouldn't be issues. People want to be treated the same but continually blast everyone around them with how they're different. I'm not speaking of any particular group of people, it goes for any, be it race, religion or creed.

Grow up and move on. We're all in this together people. The sooner we can view each other as human beings and nothing else, the sooner the world will be a better place.

Jen

Tom said...

i'm with you on people being overly sensitive--but whoever produced that first commercial has to be an idiot (it was racist, even if they didn't mean it be).

2nd one was hilarious--is bugger a naughty word? We don't use that in the states.

you betcha, i laugh at myself everyday! Because i'm a bleeping hilarious moose-twit!

Ronda Laveen said...

I wanna be with the par-tay people, please. Yes, we have gotten so overly concerned with our own ego that we can't even laugh at ourselves anymore. Tis sad, really.

Baino, I think you can write fiction. Join us some day and give it a go, we get better every time we try. I'll bet you could come up with a story about the Bitch Troll.

Kath Lockett said...

Hear hear! Self-deprecation and humour is the ONLY way to live!

Vagabonde said...

People here in the US are way too sensitive and afraid – afraid of being thought to be racist, afraid of all kind of things. At work people got fired because of making racist jokes - even to the manager level (a top manager who had been here 15 years and was super – but one of his team made a joke and he did not report it, so he was fired with the offending guy (as an example.). Commentators on the media would never dare to say anything against someone being black, Polish, Jewish, Italian, Asian,etc. You know the only people they can make jokes about in the US and it’s OK? The French. I know because I have heard so many jokes, received French bashing emails. The reason they can is because the French here don’t get together and protest against it, there is no “French lobby.” Since I am not sensitive about people making fun of me, why should other people be sensitive? Don’t know. I don’t think a sense of humour is an American trait unfortunately. I miss that here – everything is taken so seriously. I love to laugh but don’t get a chance often with the people in this area (the Deep South) but I do laugh at their French jokes (unless they are mean.)

Mim said...

I'm with you Missy B - I'm with you

Annie Ha said...

That was a wicked googely!

Megan said...

Check this post out...

http://wearerespectablenegroes.blogspot.com/2010/02/object-lesson-in-white-privilege-what.html

It's interesting.

Rowe said...

Well said, Helen. I did not think there was anything wrong with that ad when I first saw it and was surprised to hear the kerfuffle over it. To me, the white guy was wanting to make a connection with the opposing team's cheer squad.

River said...

You've nailed it Baino, with every sentence.

Isabella Golightly said...

I could not agree more - 'those' people just need to realise that they aren't the only country in the world with OMG Black people!!! Great post!

Darlene said...

In the U.S.ignorance about Cricket is because 'it's a baseball thing'.

The thing that made the commercial touchy was the fried chicken. Too many times blacks have been stereotyped with watermelon and fried chicken images, as if that's all they eat. Stereotyping is wrong no matter whom is the brunt of the image.

But I totally agree; to get 'your knickers in a twist' over that commercial would be way too sensitive.

jay said...

Oh, I absolutely agree with you Baino. I'm sick and tired of being the least important ethnic group in my own country, too! What is UP with these people? Sheesh.

Love the second vid. The dog falling in the mud! Hahahahahaha!

Ribbon said...

Hi Baino... long time no read
I'm back :)

and yes I have seen a red kanga in the wild

on another note I have an invitation for you to join myself and others on a creative project that I think will interest you.

Drop in when you can to have a read of further details.

love to you
Ribbon

PS... can you send us a little rain as it has been hot hot hot and dry here

Leah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leah said...

A very thought-provoking post! I too chafe under the bit of overwrought political correctness at times...but that said, to be completely honest, I may be the lone voice of dissent here...

Baino said...

I'm so sorry. I wrote thoughtful responses to all your comments in Notes only to have Blogger canipt . .as in have a caniption . . .thank you all for your opinions . .and thank you especially to those who are not of white anglosaxon or European backgrounds. Maintain a sense of humour. And you're right, if it's tasteless and hurtful, racist comments are not allowed but without being able to laugh at ourselves, life must be dour indeed . .now if anyone makes jokes about middle aged, single, heterosexual, white, English-born women . . .fwoooaaaar! Then I still believe that English cuisine is an oxymoron so throw your venom at bangers and mash and fish 'n chips.

Megan said...

Is canipt a word? If not I'm using it and crediting you from now on!