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KFC Ad -- OK for Australia, Racist for US?

1/6/2010 2:40 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Placating a crowd of black people with a bucket of chicken is considered good marketing by Kentucky Fried Chicken in Australia -- but it's causing a bit of a fervor here in the States.

The ad shows a very distressed white guy, surrounded by a crowd of black people at a cricket match, who wonders, "Need a tip when you're stuck in an awkward situation?" He gets out of the "awkward situation" by handing them a bucket of chicken.

A rep for KFC Australia told a local paper, "It is a light-hearted reference to the West Indian cricket team ... The ad was reproduced online in the US without KFC's permission, where we are told a culturally-based stereotype exists, leading to the incorrect assertion of racism."

UPDATE -- We just got this statement: "KFC Australia is removing the television advertisement that was being run in conjunction with the Australian cricket season. We apologize for any misinterpretation of the ad as it was not meant to offend anyone."


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The akward situation in the ad is that the white guy is wearing the colors of the Australian team and he's surrounded by West Indians wearing the colors of the west Indian team. It's an old rivalry in cricket that is based on nationality rather than color. I'm black and West Indian and grew up accepting this without any hint of implied racism. I live in America now, and this context it seems different, but the ad was not intended for US use. We shouldn't be arrogant and judge everything by the US' sometimes narrow racial context.

1710 days ago


Understandably the Ad is geared towards Aussies, and was about cricket, but the question is, Even if its about cricket and sitting on the other team's side, Why did he feel awkward, nobody was even paying attention to him, let alone heckling him. What the hell?

For those that claim Aussies are/were not racist,they obviously don't know anything about the history of that country, or anyone that lives there, and here is my argument for such position:

"White Australia policy" 1901-1973, to restrict non-white immigrants to OZ, more specifically Japanese and Chinese people because "It is not the bad qualities, but the good qualities of these alien races that make them so dangerous to us." Alfred Deakin

Forced removal of Aboriginal, mixed-raced children, during 19th, 20th centuries. Australia's "Stolen Generation"

Immigration Restriction Act 1901 "place certain restrictions on immigration and... for the removal... of prohibited immigrants"

"Blackbirding" or forced enslavement thru trickery, kidnapping of Pacific Islanders to work on Sugar Cane plantations in Queensland, Fiji. 1860s-1901.

"The doctrine of the equality of man was never intended to apply to the equality of the Englishman and the Chinaman." Sir Edmund Barton, 1st Prime Minister of Australia

John Howard (last prime minister),argued for restricting Asian immigration in 1988, as part of his One Australia policy,

One Australia Policy- proclaimed a vision of "one nation and one future". It called for an end to multiculturalism and opposed a treaty with Aboriginal Australians.

- Yeah, Australia is certainly not without sins, in how it treated people wanting a better life in their country.

1700 days ago


Yeah, nice one Charm. Get a reality check, mate. At least we've done more than just pay lip service to righting thosr wrongs over the past 50 years or so.

If you're from the US, let me remind you that the founding catchcry of the United States ... liberty, freedom, all men being born equal, the pursuit of happiness, etc ... is one of the more gross myths and lies of history. Sadly, it's one still believed by Americans themselves.

While many of those founding fathers were shouting longest and loudest about supposed oppresion at the hands of the British, they really only thought that stuff was OK for rich white guys.

I still can't believe that slave owners like Thomas Jefferson and his mates are revered in the US. It's a disgrace that has has kept black people in America downtrodden to this day. Freedom was never extended to them. Even if it looks equal on paper, we know a rich white kid has more chance ofb getting a good degree and a decent job than a poor black kid whose family has been caught in cycles of crime and poverty because of long-standing white attitudes and overt and subtle discrimination.

The truth is, it took 200 years for reality to catch up with lip service when it came to freedom and liberty for black people in the US. It's only by the time of the civil rights era of the mid-60s, when black people in some states still couldn't sit in the same bus seats as whites, eat in the same diners, or use the same toilets, that set the ball rolling for a real end to racism in America.

It's not quite there yet either, is it?? And don't think the rest of us don't know it. I suppose that might be why Australians, who know that modern Australia (where one in four citizens of all colours, races and creeds were born somewhere else, and many of the rest are children or grandchildren of migrants from every corner of the planet) is actually one of the most tolerant, welcoming and colour-blind places on the planet ... I've been to a few too, so I can tell that IS the case. Unless you've been here, you can't know.

All of which is probably why Aussies find it so onerous being lectured on racism by Americans, of all people ...

In short, we find it a complete hypocrisy that you feel the need to project your own shameful cr.p on to us.

And please, try to view the world in the context of the other cultures that exist - this ad wasn't even about Americans, it was about Australians and West Indians who were fans of opposing cricket teams during the recent West Indies cricket tour of Australia. KFC sponsored the Windies team, by the way.

America is it's own place ... but it's NOT Australia, the West Indies, or anywhere else for that matter. Your cultural experience doesn't count. It means nothing to us.

1700 days ago


Is Obama complaining AGAIN?

1729 days ago


I live in Australia, and we just find that stuff funny, and not racist. Even the tourists from the West Indies find it funny. =] Of course some people won't see the funny side and object, but its all in good humour.

1729 days ago

Outback Boy    

Nah, racism would have been handing them a basketball.

1729 days ago

Boo Hoo    

or some watermelon.

1729 days ago


I have heard that Australia is extremely racist, too many times over the span of several years. So it seems to me there must be some level of truth to it.

With that said, the ad was probably produced with humorous intentions, but it does have racist undertones when you consider that it was intended ONLY for Australia.

1729 days ago


Why is that considered an "awkward situation"? Because he's white and there are no other white people around?

1729 days ago


The fact that we in the U.S. find it racist is racist! And egocentric. Dear fellow Americans: get out, travel and experience other cultures for Pete's sake!

1729 days ago


black folks love fried chicken. Whats so racist about that?

1729 days ago

Political Correctness is the killer of this country.

Mixed Martial Arts News Updaily Daily

1729 days ago


Its hard for most Americans to get out and travel let alone find humor in anything...

1729 days ago


I think the offense was accidental. People just don't think. Could have just made it fan for the soccer team got tickets on the wrong side. But NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. They had to cause divisions in group of people rather than division by fan/team loyalities.

1729 days ago


Ahem. That would be FUROR, not FERVOR. Did your copyeditor even attend high school?????

1729 days ago
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