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Heineken gets hammered for ‘sometimes, lighter is better’ ad where a beer slides by black patrons to a white people

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Social media users are losing their heads over a beer commercial, but are they making much ado about nothing?

Chancelor Jonathan Bennett, known professionally as Chance the Rapper, raised awareness of a television advertisement for Heineken beer, which the recording artist called “racist” for its alleged insinuation that “lighter”-skinned people are “better” than blacks.

The commercial depicts a bartender who spots a woman looking down sadly at a glass of wine. He grabs a bottle of Heineken and slides it down the table.

The bottle passes three black people before arriving in front of the woman, at which point the words “Sometimes, Lighter is Better” appear on-screen. The ad ends with a glimpse of the woman laughing with two white men.

(Photo: Screen Capture).
(Photo: Screen Capture).
(Photo: Screen Capture).

Bennet called the TV spot “terribly racist,” and speculated that Heineken and other companies intentionally make controversial ads in order to “get more views.”

The rapper clarified that he was not calling for a boycott of Heineken.

He also criticized publications that stoked outrage over the article, which he said gave the beer company publicity and missed his “entire point.”

In a statement to Newsweek, Heineken said it “missed the mark,” but asserted the “lighter” slogan was only referring to beer, not skin color.

“For decades, Heineken has developed diverse marketing that shows there’s more that unites us than divides us,” the statement read. “While we feel the ad is referencing our Heineken Light beer—we missed the mark, are taking the feedback to heart and will use this to influence future campaigns.”

Many of Bennett’s followers agreed the ad was racist.

Other believed the recording artist was “reaching”–seeing racism where there was none.


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