Posted by sean on June 18, 2020 at 8:41 am in Have I Got News For You with No Comments

A former MP has added to the Black Lives Matter debate, but arguably for all the wrong reasons.

Fiona Onasanya recently tweeted

“So I was wondering why Rice Krispies have three white boys representing the brand and Coco Pops have a monkey?”

Now, I really don’t want to sound insensitive. As I have already mentioned on my blog, I am in full support of BLM.

If I thought for one moment there was a chance, that as a white privileged male, I could be somehow missing a racist design on a box of Kellogg’s cereals, I would question myself. I deplore any form of racism, so certainly wouldn’t be blogging in favour of it.

Is using a monkey to sell a chocolate breakfast cereal a form of racism? In my opinion, absolutely not. Especially as the same monkey is used to promote the white chocolate variety of the cereal…

The whole Coco Pops monkey debate naturally took over social media for a few hours, as well as making the news in all the major publications.

Besides sounding a little daft, my only concern about tweeting outlandish statements, such as the one by Ms Onasanya, is that it may overshadow and dilute the fantastic work being carried out by BLM. I would hope that stories like this don’t hang around in the memory for long, and people will return to tackling serious forms of racial discrimination.

Finally, to put the Coco Pops monkey in context, one example of what I feel to be a highly racist TV ad, is a cartoon promoting the fruit squash drink, Kia Ora.

According to the Encyclopedia of Google, this advertisement was regularly shown in the 1980s and early nineties.

It shows how far society has progressed in 30 years, when adverts like that can go from acceptable, to simply downright racist

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