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May 3rd, 2013
08:42 AM ET

Opinion: What's racist about a talking goat?

Editor's note: LZ Granderson, who writes a weekly column for CNN.com, was named journalist of the year by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association and is a 2011 Online Journalism Award finalist for commentary. He is a senior writer and columnist for ESPN the Magazine and ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter: @locs_n_laughs.

By LZ Granderson, CNN Contributor

(CNN) - I went online this morning to see the Mountain Dew ad - the one some are calling the most racist in history - expecting to see some really offensive stuff. Instead, I saw some really silly stuff.

The goat's funny.

The names of some of the black men in the lineup are hilarious.

The premise: ridiculous.

And I would think that's the point of a commercial with a talking goat. It's meant to be ridiculous and not taken seriously. It's comedy of the absurd, along the lines of Del Shores' "Sordid Lives," Jerry Seinfeld's parents on "Seinfeld" or "Dude, Where's My Car?"

Does it play on stereotypical imagery?

Yes, and because of that, I can see how some could be a bit put off by a police lineup featuring all black men before a frightened white woman. But come on, one of the suspects' names is "Beyonte."

The circumstances surrounding the scene in the commercial are so outrageously over the top, I found myself snickering more than anything. Similar to the way I snickered during a skit featuring Dave Chappelle, who was making fun of racism with the creation of his character Clayton Bigsby, a blind white supremacist in the South.

And he's black.

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Filed under: Pop culture • Race • What we think
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. AniyunweahCherokee

    Black producers made the commercial. And who cares. No one. The man writing this article is wrong about one thing...the commercial isn't silly or offensive. Its 100 stupid and a waste of time watching it

    May 6, 2013 at 1:19 am | Report abuse |
  2. yankee

    your racism shows your ignorance

    May 5, 2013 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |