KFC was deep-fried after the chain marked a holiday commemorating the conclusion of slavery with a BLM-influenced chicken advert.
The fast-food chain’s Trinidad branch evidently wanted to exhibit unity during the Caribbean country’s Emancipation Day, which celebrates the end of slavery in British Empire colonies. KFC Trinidad showed in an Instagram post a chicken drumstick with the shadowy outline of a ‘black power’ fist that’s been freshly championed by the Black Lives Matter activism. The graphic read: “Happy Emancipation Day.” It didn’t take long before the IG post seized the attention of folks online. One livid Twitter user asked: “This is the most racist thing I’ve seen a corporation do ever, how tone-deaf are they?”
HOW IS THIS REAL ???? wow pic.twitter.com/hzJD57Xqee
— DuaneTV (@itsDuaneTV) August 3, 2020
Others said the ad was “stupid” and “distasteful.” One reviewer contended that while the post would easily be deemed racist in Europe or the United States, it fits Trinidad and Tobago’s “sense of humor.” Following the uproar, the chain deleted the Instagram message and swiped it with an apology. The statement read: “Our intention was to support and recognize the importance of this historically significant event. We recognize that our posts commemorating Emancipation Day drew some negative responses. Clearly, we got it wrong and we want to unreservedly apologize for the offense caused.”
On the flip side, one of the top-liked replies on the post read: “I honestly found the post creative…so I’m either missing the issue or it was blown out of proportion.” KFC isn’t the only chain that’s taken heat for social media posts considered to be racially callous. Popeyes Chicken tweeted that their establishment would be “nothing without Black Lives,” as a response to the anti-racist protest sweeping the U.S. following George Floyd‘s murder at the hands of police in Minneapolis. The company later erased the tweet and supplanted it with a message pledging to use its platform to back the BLM movement.
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