Tyler, The Creator has spoken out about his pulled Mountain Dew ad. He says the accusations that the ad was stereotypical and racist are ridiculous.
The Odd Future rapper is the just latest Hip Hop artist to fall victim to public sentiment. Tyler directed a Mountain Dew Ad in which he used a number of his friends to simulate a police lineup. The ad was labeled as racist and stereotypical.
During an interview with Billboard.com, Tyler had the opportunity to speak out about it and he seemed baffled at the outrage. He also spoke out specifically on the comments made by Dr. Boyce Watkins, a professor at Syracuse University.
“I guess he found it racist because I was portraying stereotypes, which is ridiculous because, one, all of those dudes [in the line-up] are my friends,” Tyler explained. “Two, they’re all basically in their own clothes. It was originally supposed to be just two dudes, but Garrett from Trash Talk came with his friend and other people had showed up, so I just put all of them in that line-up, if you really wanna know the truth… So for [Watkins] to nitpick and notice that, clearly shows his state of mind is on some other shit that I can’t comprehend, for him to actually sit there and for him to notice that it’s all blacks [in the lineup]. That wasn’t my intention.”
The California native also spoke on the negative impact Dr. Watkins comments would have on future opportunities of other young black men that might have a chance to be placed in a similar opportunity.
“Because you’re so quick to judge something that you don’t know the context, you’re so quick to call me a racist and other stuff, but he didn’t know where I was coming from,” said Tyler. “But then he looked at what I have actually done, and now he wants to take his statement back. ‘My daughters listen to you.’ Okay, that’s confusing, because if I’m such a racist, and such a bad person, and feeding negativity to the youth, why are your daughters listening to me? That shows you’re a bad parent and a hypocrite if your daughters are listening to me and I’m such a bad person…Now that he’s doing that, not only is it messing up opportunities for me, but also maybe opportunities for another young black male who maybe looks up to me and wants to do that in the future. It’s ludicrous.”