Volkswagen Commercial is Offensive?

By Brittney M. Walker

Offended by the Volkswagen commercial? Me, no.

Others… eh… many folks are split down the middle about it.

Typically I don’t comment much about pop culture and the silly things mainstream media puts out there mostly because it’s … silly.

Always riddled with some sort of controversy about a subliminal message, Super Bowl commercial ads fell in line with the after game chit chat. Actually, this year, the commercials were available via YouTube for viewing.

So, about the controversial Volkswagen “Get Happy” themed ad:

I am not personally offended by the Caribbean accent. My first honest thought was: “This is cute. I get it. These German white folks believe Caribbean folk are happy. Probably because they are due to the warm weather, sunshine. And scientifically, Black people are happier, calmer, and all that great stuff due to melanin and biological stuff I’m still trying to understand.”

After having a brief discussion with a friend who also viewed the commercial, he mentioned that he was offended.

In the short conversation, I guess I can see why someone would be offended, but at the same time,

I’m thinking, “Eh, even if I am seeing things from an ignorant, Western-washed mind, I only see their imitation as the highest form of flattery.” Who doesn’t want to be Black? (lol)

And I also think the comments about possibly justifying the commercial by inserting a person of color other than the Asian man – code for “Insert Black Man Here” – is just silly. I think that would have made it worse for me. Then it would be a bunch of buck dancing and Tom foolery for me. Let white people be silly and offensive on their own. Don’t put a Brother in there to make your point.

Besides, I think it’s innate for many people of European descent to do silly things without our help, frankly because they always have.

Historically: colonized Africa to steal what Africans had/have; attempting to imitate the rich spirituality and unexplainable forms of communication that come naturally to people of African descent; stealing mummies to try to unlock the secret to immortality…

White people have done some wild things in their existence. What makes anyone believe that’s going to change? I’m not convinced.

Therefore, I’m not offended by any of the silly things they do, because it’s going to continue.

Finally, admiring and walking in the footsteps of some of Pan Africa’s greatest leaders like Kwame Nkrumah, Marcus Garvey, Miriam Makeba, Malcolm X and so many more, these people didn’t worry about what white people did that was “offensive.” They were offensive in their nature; they moved in spite of whatever others were devising to convince Black people we were inferior.

They didn’t respond or react. People reacted to them. That’s power! That’s being offensive, strategic.

I’m over being offended. I have too much work to do to worry about correcting white people.

Read more about people’s opinions about the commercial at Colorlines.com.

Filed under: News and tagged with: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

-