PepsiCo pulls Mountain Dew ad criticized for racism

Thu May 2, 2013 1:47am IST

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(Reuters) - PepsiCo Inc pulled an online ad for Mountain Dew on Wednesday after criticism from bloggers that the spot embraced racial stereotypes and made light of violence toward women.

The ad was developed by African-American hip-hop artist Tyler the Creator and shows a battered white woman on crutches trying to pick out her assailant from a police lineup featuring five African-American men and a goat.

As she scans the lineup, the goat threatens her: "Keep ya mouth shut," "snitches get stitches, fool" and "I'ma get outta here I'ma do you up."

The woman eventually runs out, yelling that she can't "do it" - go through with the identification.

The white police officer then takes a sip of Mountain Dew, saying, "She's just gotta do it."

"Dew It" is the soft drink's slogan.

Dr Boyce Watkins, a social commentator and author, called it "arguably the most racist commercial in history." Another blog, Daily Kos, called it "flagrantly racist" and "misogynistic."

"We apologize for this video and take full responsibility," said a PepsiCo spokeswoman in an emailed statement.

She said PepsiCo removed the ad from its online channels and that Tyler was removing it from his as well. A link could be still be found at press time.

PepsiCo did not pull an earlier commercial that showed the goat, called Felicia, attacking the woman after tasting a Mountain Dew at a restaurant. The woman was the goat's server.

(Reporting by Martinne Geller in New York; editing by Jilian Mincer and Prudence Crowther)

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