May 31st, 2013
01:53 PM ET

Why is ad featuring multiracial family causing stir?

(CNN) - The leader of the free world is the child of one black parent and one white parent. The number of Americans who identify as "mixed race" is on the rise. And this year marks the 46th anniversary of the Loving v. Virginia Supreme Court decision, which made interracial marriage legal in the United States.

So why is a Cheerios ad featuring a multiracial family causing a stir?

The commercial features a curly-haired brown girl inquiring of her Caucasian mother and African-American father about Cheerios' healthy attributes.

"Mom, Dad told me that Cheerios was good for your heart. Is that true?" she asks in the commercial, titled "Just Checking."


Adweek reports that YouTube comments made "references to Nazis, 'troglodytes' and 'racial genocide' " before they were disabled.

As of Friday, most of the comments were supportive on the Cheerios Facebook page, like this one:


I just saw your commercial representing a beautiful mixed family, and I am appalled that hateful people are in such a frenzy over what is a modern family structure. I applaud you and your efforts to acknowledge families with an untraditional structure, and there needs to be more mixed race, minority, adoptive & non-heteronormative families represented in media. Thank you again, and even though I do not eat cereal (my brother loves Cheerios BTW) you can be sure that whatever future child I am blessed with, may probably be mixed heritage, and will be enjoying your product.

But earlier in the week, comments were not as thoughtful. The Huffington Post reported on the vile nature of some responses, like this one:

More like single parent in the making. Black dad will dip out soon.

Reddit featured a link to the commercial on its homepage Thursday, also drawing a range of responses.

Granted, the comments section of the Internet is rarely a reliable space for reflective or thoughtful discourse on race in America.

But the range of reactions to an ad that incidentally highlights a multiracial family might be the start of a discussion on how the American family is seen and portrayed.

What do you think: Is the commercial long overdue or much ado about nothing?

Filed under: How we look • Race • Where we live
soundoff (1,277 Responses)
  1. Laurence

    "The leader of the free world is the child of one black parent and one white parent" REALLY? In that case, why the hell do so many people think the USA have elected their first black president? And crazy as it is, many voted on the pigmentation of his skin, and not his politics.

    June 27, 2013 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  2. steve cameron

    I am going to sue the Italian government because the Roman legions raped and enslaved my ancestors. You are part of the problem, not the solution. New Black Panther are you?

    June 24, 2013 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Linda

    Mixed race aside, the commercial doesn't indicate whether the couple is even married. Anyone objecting to that? Or are we just assuming? You say it doesn't matter? Then what does it matter that they are different races?

    June 22, 2013 at 8:57 am | Report abuse |
  4. andyv2k14

    Who cares? The couple is mixed race, who cares either way? But also, I'm sure that some of the people were joking. Sometimes racism is good for humor. If you're too thin skinned to take some stuff as humor, too bad for you, it's gonna be hard getting through life being that thin skinned.

    June 19, 2013 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Another

    Funny that people who are in favour support this bad, but the product of the odd looking union is less not more diverse.

    June 15, 2013 at 7:14 am | Report abuse |
  6. Albert Wesker

    It matters not what the color of your skin is. I have tested people of all races with my viral supplements and when the facts boil down, failure and inadequacy are not racially determined. It is a personal issue. Black, white, Hispanic or asian, you are all inferior to me. So enjoy your irrelevant qualms while you have the time. Soon, Uroburos will be released and a new age of humanity will be birthed ensuring Complete Global Saturation.

    June 12, 2013 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Travis

    I don't understand why everyone makes race such a big deal. You all talk like they did a good deed or charity work just because they are with someone else of a different color.... "Oh this is so cute because the girl is black and the mom is white" blah blah blah.... jesus... It's all of you idiots that continue to make racism what it is today. Get over it.

    June 11, 2013 at 8:41 am | Report abuse |
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