An Open Letter to Mary J. Blige Re: Her Buffoonish Burger King Commercial

250 comments
April 2, 2012 ‐ By Renay Alize

Source: ddotomen.com

Dear Mary J.,

Gurl, you know we love you. Like for real. We love your triumph. We love your music. We love your passion. But we have no love whatsoever for the recent debacle you decided to lend your image and vocals to. Mary, sometimes ignorance really is bliss; because up until a few hours ago, I had nothing but warm fuzzy feelings for you. In fact, I was just rocking to one of your jams Madame Noire posted on their Facebook page this morning. I had no idea that just hours later, those warm, fuzzy feelings would be replaced with frosty disappointment in light of troubling new information.

I think you know what I’m referring to. No? Ok, let me refresh your memory:

Unfortunately, my co-worker brought this video to my attention. Even though he tried to warn me that what I was about to witness was going to be a bit unsettling, nothing could have prepared me for the utter buffoonery I saw in that commercial.

Why Mary, why?

This is so beneath you. This harmonizing about chicken is a move I would associate with someone whose glory days were far behind them. You still have so much more to contribute to the arts and entertainment game that there was no reason you had to stoop to stereotypes. And I know you may be thinking everybody, across the world, loves chicken. It’s true, most people get down with the poultry; but as a black woman, singing passionately about chicken is not the move!

Not to mention the way you interrupted the manager to thirstily inquire about the contents of this song-worthy chicken wrap was just too much for me to stomach. And to make a bad situation worse you used the melody from your own song “Don’t Mind.” Mary, boo this hurts my heart, truly. You don’t know how much I love this song. I love it so much I bought it when I’m typically an illegal download type of girl. But now you’ve cheapened it. From now on, every time I listen to this up tempo love song, I’ll associate it with crispy, chicken, three cheeses, lettuce and ranch dressing. Do you see what you’ve done, the ramifications of your actions? You compromised your art to sell chicken wraps for the man. Sigh.

Burger King got you gurl. It’s no secret that they’re losing when it comes to the fast food game. I mean Wendy’s beat their sales this year. They’re desperate. And you know what desperate execs do when they need to make money? They hurriedly throw together clichéd, often stereotypical, advertising campaigns. And that’s where you came in, Mary. Having a black woman sing about chicken was no mistake. They’re trying to reach the “urban” (aka black) demographic. And God knows black folk, won’t buy anything unless there’s a song, and preferably a dance, attached to it.

I know you know that was sarcasm, Mary.

At this point, what’s done is done. But gurl, this cannot happen again. You are the Queen of Hip Hop Soul, not a court jester for the so-called King of Burgers.

With [Tough] Love,

Renay

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rey-Ray/1819380801 Rey Ray

    This was such a stupid commercial.  It was not good in any way.

    Not because of any racism, but because it was a bad commercial.

    I love Mary (my fav song is No More Drama).

    Even without Mary, this would be a horrible commercial.
    Even with a white or asian women singing, this would be a horrible commercial.

    This IS way below Mary.  But in now way does it feel or seem racist to me.

    And those are chicken tenders.  I don’t see that as fried chicken.  And don’t tell me you think ANY Afrian American in a fried chicken commercial makes it racist.  That in itself would be more racist.


    Honestly, when I first saw it…. I was “wtf was that? That’s a stupid add.”  I never once thought, uh oh, Mary should know better than to like Chicken tenders wraped in a Tortilla.  I’m just glad George Lopez didn’t do it….you know mexicans and tortillas.

    Just stupid. Not racist.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rey-Ray/1819380801 Rey Ray

    This was such a stupid commercial.  It was not good in any way.

    Not because of any racism, but because it was a bad commercial.

    I love Mary (my fav song is No More Drama).

    Even without Mary, this would be a horrible commercial.
    Even with a white or asian women singing, this would be a horrible commercial.

    This IS way below Mary.  But in now way does it feel or seem racist to me.

    And those are chicken tenders.  I don’t see that as fried chicken.  And don’t tell me you think ANY Afrian American in a fried chicken commercial makes it racist.  That in itself would be more racist.


    Honestly, when I first saw it…. I was “wtf was that? That’s a stupid add.”  I never once thought, uh oh, Mary should know better than to like Chicken tenders wraped in a Tortilla.  I’m just glad George Lopez didn’t do it….you know mexicans and tortillas.

    Just stupid. Not racist.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rey-Ray/1819380801 Rey Ray

    This was such a stupid commercial.  It was not good in any way.

    Not because of any racism, but because it was a bad commercial.

    I love Mary (my fav song is No More Drama).

    Even without Mary, this would be a horrible commercial.
    Even with a white or asian women singing, this would be a horrible commercial.

    This IS way below Mary.  But in now way does it feel or seem racist to me.

    And those are chicken tenders.  I don’t see that as fried chicken.  And don’t tell me you think ANY Afrian American in a fried chicken commercial makes it racist.  That in itself would be more racist.


    Honestly, when I first saw it…. I was “wtf was that? That’s a stupid add.”  I never once thought, uh oh, Mary should know better than to like Chicken tenders wraped in a Tortilla.  I’m just glad George Lopez didn’t do it….you know mexicans and tortillas.

    Just stupid. Not racist.

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  • Ebonee36

    Maybe WE should stop attributing EVERYTHING as racially motivated and that will help with the cause.  GEESH!!!  I’m black and don’t eat fried chicken and don’t care about what some backwater ignorant person assumes I eat based on my race.  If she said no to the commercial just because of what she figured it may represent for black people;  wouldn’t that mean she is helping to perpetuate the exact thing you are angry about..RACISM.  You know those images come from ignorant sources, so who cares.  She is an entertainer, which is her job, she was approached with a business opportunity and she took it.  It doesn’t mean that she is not for her race.  Are you kidding me.  Maybe WE should shake the negative imagery that we place on ourselves and then we wouldn’t get upset about s**t like this.  Again, i don’t eat fried chicken so I know that all black people don’t eat fried chicken.  Come y’all.  As long as white people act like racism don’t exist and black people scream racism about every single thing, there will always be a problem. 

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  • KingMike

    Funny, Most white people will never understand why things like this bother Black people and most black people will never understand why thin=g like this effect back people as a whole and should never feed into it. I bet all of you don’t even know why chicken is associated with Black people.

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  • Stereotyped

    And the science award of the year goes to Renay “Buffoonish” Alize for her effortless research to answer the question “What is a stereotype?”. 
    The jurys motivation: “With her amusing attempts to lable Mary J Bliges new Burger King commercial as stereotyping black women she managed to make herself even more of a stereotype.”

    • Ebonee36

       AMEN TO THAT!!! 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000568431083 Telihia Daniels

    I fail to see why this commercial is racist. Just because she is singing about chicken. Well would it be racist if she was singing about the hamburger no. I understand that racist society say all we do is eat chicken and watermelon, but comeon this was advertisement. I will say that the commercial was corny as hill though!!

  • MissPretty

    I feel like we have become too politically correct in this country.  People can’t say, do, or show anything anymore without someone getting their panties in a bunch.  The first time I saw this commercial I thought it was about snack wraps, not fried chicken.  It’s not like they showed her closing down a KFC for dinner and dancing AKA Flavor Flav.  

  • guest

    I just read a article on this exact same topic (see link) although I never saw the ad on tv.

    http://wearthemask.com/burger-king-the-queen/

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ZT7DUTY3EKGYIY3ROH5VJXCMUU Sasha

    we are LOSING the war because we choose such irrelevant battles to fight….so what black people love chicken and white people love steak rare…..so why do black people get so unraveled by our food choices….we have to truly work  on our INSECURITIES….we are way to consumed with seeking the approval of white people..we want our  IMAGINE to be approved by them thru television , radio and media

    • Ebonee36

       YES Thank you

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  • UtMadman

    What is everyone so afraid of? The fact is, the only thing that BK has that is new is chicken. So, are they supposed to tiptoe through everything because of that unfortunate coincidence? Grow up people, and stop being so sensitive! They are in the biz to make money, and they will grab every chance to make more. Sorry to dash so many fantasies about your favorites…

  • maggie

    These comparisons to Jay Leno, Salma Hayek, or a white person making a commercial using mayonnaise are useless.  Black caricatures were portrayed in media in this country to make fun of black people for years.  Mayonnaise, white people eating chicken, etc. do not allude to stereotyped references.  Duh! 

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  • Ajsmom1961

    mary got paid,looked fab, and fried chicken is always marketed to black folks so what’s the problem.

  • UK Guest

    Wow! I can’t believe this went viral and the BK pulled the ad. The power of the internet I guess. This story even made the news in the UK, although to be honest, I don’t really know what all the fuss is about. I don’t like the advert because it’s just b!. I never saw it as racist. Honestly, it’s something that I pictured a more poppy artist like Katy Perry or Rihanna doing rather MJB. I thought as a serious R&B/Soul singer that she would be promoting luxury goods or top rated brands such as Pepsi which are associated with global superstars like Madonna, Michael Jackson and Beyonce. I’m a fan of MJB and very surprised she took this job as it screams of desperation. She is probably one of the few 90s R&B stars who is still around and selling records. I guess her management are a little worried that she is not seen as relevant to the youngsters and wanted to make her relevant but this surely is the wrong way to do it! Here’s hoping that we get a great record out of it. :-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000584116781 Gigi Craig

    My God, it was just a commercial.  African Americans/Black people should concern themselves with stereotypes that are harmful, and untrue.  There is nothing wrong with Black people liking chicken.  The majority of Americans like chicken, regardless of race.  The belief that Black people like to eat chicken is in no way harmful to the Black race, it does not insult the intelligence of Black people, it does not put negative beliefs about African Americans/the Black Race out there to be induced into the minds of non-Blacks.  

    Really, seeing as how the belief that Black people love chicken is true, it actually is not a stereotype.

    I’m frying chicken today, to go along with my potato salad, green beans, fried corn and homemade biscuits.

    Black people and nearly ALL Americans LOVE:

    Fried Chicken
    Barbecue Chicken
    Fried Chicken Wings
    Buffalo Chicken Wings
    Barbecue Chicken Wings
    Rotisserie Chicken
    Lemon Pepper Chicken
    Baked Chicken

    So, what?! 

  • Reality

    Its sad that some people have to twist events just to make some facetious point where no offence existed beforehand. Haven’t they got better things to do with their lives than create disharmony just for the sake of it. Of course advertisers will use people of one ethnic group (including whites) if it fits best for the product so whats new here. We’ve seen this approach for years and no one has complained before. Get a life people, for goodness sakes !!!

  • Tsnowlin

    5 Gs please! Good God Get a Grip Girl! Mary is doing her and making money! Who are you to decide what is appropriate for her career or her wallet! The bigger picture for u short sighted children, is for Mary to not be a follower and do care about what haters or pseudo writers think she should do. What happened to supporting our sister? And this is supposed to be a pro woman forum? Really? Check yourself and the real women who understand that a black woman headlining a national advertising campaign is a big step in mainstream media finding value in our community. This potentially would have more positive images of black women for our daughters to see. But u think it’s beneath her. Grow up!

  • Jhnkennedy781

    I’m so disappointed by the emotionally charged insecurity displayed by Ms. Alize. I do not understand the necessity of so many to cry-out because Mary J. Blige, an established and well respected professional in her industry continued to make money in her industry. . .entertainment. Chill-out folks. Do your jobs and let Mary do hers. She isn’t upset when we collect our pay checks, pay our bills and report to work in a timely fashion and get elevated. The hateration must stop. 
    P.S. Stop pirating music! Perhaps if you paid for your music at each turn, Mary would be able to walk away from $2,000,000.00 ad campaigns. Just a thought. Cheers!

  • Moon

    kanye west, gold digger, 50 cent, pimping, kanye west and jay-z n,, in paris – shall i go on? Where is the backlash.

  • Justanotherwise

    If La Buena Taqueria in Watsonville, CA ever wants to pay me and give me free food to sing about how much I love their tacos on Tuesdays, I’m doing it. 

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  • tawana

    Honestly i have a lot of compassion for Mary because of her many storms ,but i have never thought that she could sing and this burger king commercial proved it..DAMN! she sounds HORRIBLE.!!!!

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  • Windwardguy

    How is this more racist than the Popeye black lady selling chicken

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  • Ian Fraser

    I must have missed something Oh yes there should have been TWO one Black and one dare I say it White. Please get a life.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1085742786 Damali Morgan

    If it was Elton John doing this video people would be laughing and talking about how the commercial is hilarious and marveling about how they didn’t realize Sir Elton was so funny, but Mary does the commercial and because there is fried chicken involved it is buffoonery? And then wait! Then when marketing executives stop hiring black actors and singers it will be deemed as a closed market form of racism. Get over it and enjoy the show sometimes. I know you need web page hits Madame Noire but push the edge a bit and don’t follow media suit in bashing an artist for having fun.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1085742786 Damali Morgan

       Sidenote: The commercial was really really bad though lol

  • JR

    You know, this is what is keeping racism alive and well. This is ridiculous. They had her sing about fried chicken because she is a singer. The other adds, selling the same damn chicken, are from people like Jay Leno… a comedian. Do you think they’re going to have him sing? Probably not, but the likelihood of him telling a lame joke regarding chicken is incredibly high. Get the chip off your shoulder’s blacks… this is just a person selling a chicken sandwich. 

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  • Joker

    Hmmm paranoia tastes so delicious

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  • Cris1582

    Calm down.  Burger King has apologized that they rushed the commercial and did not release a finished product.

  • misha213

    Really!  To actually be disappointed over a commercial that run’s for 30 second, where the artist made 2 million dollars for it.  Do you actually think that she care’s.  This is soooo trivial it makes me wonder about people such as this, that would actually write a letter.  You should be disappointed about other issue’s such as,  people not having jobs, home’s, health insurance etc.  Maybe put your letter writing to good use on something that actually affects society as a whole.

  • Divanerd

    Coool… now, can you write an open letter to that lady on the Popeye’s commercials?

  • Youallarecrazy

    Everyone has gone insane.  I suppose we need to get a list together about what is acceptable for white people can sing about and what black people can sing about.  Oh, and don’t forget all the other races too.  Let me know when it’s finished.

  • Lenaofdc

    As a Greek can I demand they stop playing those stupid hummus commercials with the yia yia? It’s a stereotype that belittles Greeks into a bunch of crazy village baffoons.

    Seriously, get over yourself. Learn to laugh at stereotypes and be humble so we don’t have such a hateful world…

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  • mk

    to the tune of two million dollars all y’all broke negroes that wouldn’t (you’re crazy ) moving on

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  • Logic

     First off, “girl” is spelled “G-I-R-L”, not “Gurl.” and with that said, I don’t see the big deal here. I mean, I’ve heard the stereotype, but how is it helping to make a big deal about it? I don’t think it was a great career choice for her, necessarily, but she certainly didn’t do anything wrong. Just because she’s African American doesn’t mean that she should limit herself to things that exclude friend chicken. She’s got to make her money, and they do, too. Why should she care what people think if it wasn’t her intentions to further a stereotype?

  • Dante

    So now this very talented young ladt cannot sing any songs mentioning chicken as it has racist slurs??? WTF???
    Dearest Renay… your trite “letter” using the the words ‘GURL’ and ‘BOO’ in reference to Ms Blige I find FAR MORE RACIST!

    Take a leaf from the magnificent Mr Morgan Freeman’s book when asked how best to solve the racist issues? He replied: “Stop talking about it…”

    Take a hint gurl friend and STFU boo…

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  • Justanotherwise

    I wonder how come I never feel like people are being racist when they think I eat tacos and burritos and other Mexican foods? It’s what I eat. Should anyone take association with food so seriously?

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  • Rhianna

    Wow, y’all are really going in on Renay right now. She’s entitled to her opinion and you don’t have to agree, but you should at least respect it. Insulting her for expressing her views is not going to improve anything. Let’s be tactful and remain respectful.

    • JillianXO

      When Renay learns tact and respect, maybe she’ll deserve some.  We reap what we sow.

  • Marcs

    Isn’t using the name “Renay Alize” self buffoonery. I do recall Alize being a liquor product marketed to the black community. 

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  • JillianXO

    How dare you call her a buffoon for exercising her freedoms and earning a living.  You are a disgrace to Americans (whatever color they are).

  • Suemod08

    I’m an Aussie so aspects of the cultural response here didn’t strike me, however, the ad seemed odd and really false. When Mary begins to sing it’s not surreal, just…odd…in the ad context.   In fact, ‘singing’ seemed pointless and overkill.

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  • Mike

    Looks like most of the people who are having a problem with this ad are forgetting that blacks aren’t the only group of people advertisers appeal to to attract customers. Businesses are equal opportunity advertisers. They just want customers. Don’t matter your color as lpong as you’ve got green.

  • R3DL1N3

    Honestly.
    I could understand you guy’s being upset if she was also holding a big old
    slice of watermelon.. but really.. all this over her singing about chicken..
    Hey I take offence to the overweight white guy in the bad dress shirt (BK
    uniform) with glasses on.. looking like a dork singing along.. when, oh when
    will you people stop portraying white men like this.. stop the insanity..

  • Mike

    Sounds like the old crab bucket story to me. Can’t let anyone get a leg up or out. Leave her be.

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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7PIXEDWOHQWNYPHJM3YRMJ37OA KnowNow2

    I guess if she was signing about a fish wrap or some scrimps it would be no problem, can you see how silly all this is.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7PIXEDWOHQWNYPHJM3YRMJ37OA KnowNow2

    I really dont see the problem with teh ad, I guess you didn’t like Undercover Brother either? We have much bigger problems in this society than signing about chicken. I think you are being dramatic.

  • JillianXO

    How dare you call your Mary a baffoon for earning a living.  I think I’m coming to dipise this site.  SO negative and divisive.  You insult for sister for making money?  How dare you.

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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2OXWMJXXWKRY3LSYE7XXNX23BI Fair and balanced

    This commercial is not insulting. I thought she would be dancing and jumping around with a Aunt Jemima scarf on her head, she is not and the beat is great. You want racial track down the MC Hammer Kentucky fried chicken commercial. 

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  • http://twitter.com/gennatay Gina


    so white people shouldnt do commercials about mayonaise” 
    THIS LOL

  • http://twitter.com/gennatay Gina

    Its suppose to be a satire on her title as “Queen of Hip-Hop Soul”. As are the other commercials that Burger King released with David Beckham (swexy)  and Jay Leno (talk/comedy). Stop being so sensitive. 

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  • http://twitter.com/haroldgoodridge harold goodridge

    With all the issues to tackle and take on, you choose this? It’s a non issue. She’s singing about chicken!!! So what??? This is a good way to take attention away from real issues. Now the entire country has to watch this story on CNN like there’s something to it. This is the kind of thing that makes we as black folks appear to be confused, unfocused, and overly sensitive. STOP IT. Let Mary do her thing and stop taking our dialog into this area of REAL buffoonery.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7PIXEDWOHQWNYPHJM3YRMJ37OA KnowNow2

      Harold I agree 100% who is this Renay is she living in the same country as we are where a 17 is shot on the way home?

  • Knight69_199917

    Open letter to Renay,

    Get a life!! Are you kidding me? How does Mary J Blige singing on a Burger King commercial about chicken equate to anything stereotypical? Because she’s black? She’s a a recording super star. Would it have made any difference to you if it was Steven Tyler? Would it be stereotyping white people (white people love chicken just as much as black people, in case you didn’t know)? I seriously doubt they are trying to market solely to the African-America market, but for argument’s sake let’s say they were. Does that not say that BK values the African-American dollar just as much as the “white” dollar? Last I checked they were both green BTW. Perhaps you would rather they put up signs that say “Whites Only” and have the grand wizard from the kkk sing the song in the commercial?? Racism is clearly still a huge problem in this country and it does not need its importance diminished by you in writing such an ignorant piece.

    With Even Tougher Love,

    3atMor3Chicken

  • http://www.facebook.com/DarrinBones Darrin C. Winston Jr.

    Don’t be a “slave” to the money. 

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LWEVFGQHXBVZK6UBLY3G5O27XM charlottec

    we do not own the RIGHTS to CHICKEN…black people are NOT the only people that eat chicken….the FREAKING world eats chicken….chicken breast, chicken drums, freaking chicken wraps….WTF….so white people shouldnt do commercials about mayonaise… and i guess popeyes shouldnt use black people either, because i NEVER see any WHITE people in popeyes ads…WTF…get some real issues to discuss, not this nonsense

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LWEVFGQHXBVZK6UBLY3G5O27XM charlottec

    ok…are you guys SERIOUS….What about allllll the black people in Popeyes ad…..? everything is not racist…..find some real buisness

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  • Julezz

    This post by Renay Alize is part of what’s wrong with America. It’s ridiculous and a damn shame.

  • Shannon

    Black people can NOT rap, sing or dance (especially tap dance) in reference to chicken. #period

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  • Letsdostuff

    Hey, she’ll do or say almost anything if the money’s right!

  • thewolfkin

    Man this commercial is hard to find now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1486717764 Lannetta Somerville

    While I love reading the articles on this site, turning a mole hill into a mountain on this particular
    topic/commercial is simply …. Simple. It’s almost as if the staff of Madame Noire was LOOKING for something to complain about, get the fans riled up, another reason to pull use “race” versus capitalism as a platform to preach. Compared to the likes of the Kia commercials (using rats in hoodies …i.e. “hood rats”), McDonald’s throwing rap into a commercial to sell smoothies, and even the Sierra Mist “Drop it Like Its Hot” advertising, Mary dropping her vocals for BK is merely a drop in the bucket. To go thru the whole “she’s selling out..” “…this is coonery…” debate is so weak. Reading some of the comments before actually seeing the video, one would think MJB was smacking on a chicken wrap, licked her fingers, and then sung a few bars of “dis shol is guud.” If you REALLY feel that strongly about the commercial, boycott Burger King and any other food chain which uses urban images/black culture to sell to you their products. But before you do that, let’s also keep in mind some of these same readers possibly dine at these establishments on a religious basis due in part to NOT wanting to cook after a hard day of work because it’s convenient – damn the subliminal messages delivered or the unhealthy options offered at their fave fast food spots.

    As a fan of this site, I implore you to focus on what’s NOT publicized about our people, what legislation is trying to encroach upon our communities, and what could possibly hinder the future of our kids.SO many bigger issues are going on which pertain to OUR livelihood, but aren’t
    being discussed. Continue to provide your readers with relative information regarding our health, wealth, and functionality as a race.  Observations such as this video are no more than smoke-and-mirrors for what truly needs to be discussed, dissected, and disseminated. #IJS

    Lah

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Menza/721432075 Mark Menza

    Renay, you’re a maroon.  Really?  This
    “hurts your heart “?!? 
    You can’t get it through your 2 dimensional skull that Mary J is so huge
    that she doesn’t have to take herself so seriously.  The humor is in the fact  that is IS her actually singing it.  And then you call her out because she
    interrupts the manager?  OMG what a
    “horror”! 
    Seriously?  She talks over
    the guy in what can only be described as somewhat well coordinated comedic
    timing.  And YEAH the joke doesn’t
    work if it’s not her actual tune! 
    This coming from someone who admits in the same article “I loved it
    so much that I bought it, when I’m typically an illegal download type of
    girl”.  The only crime on the
    table here is that you have the nerve to call out an artist when you regularly
    STEAL the art.  You loose ALL cred
    when you show who and what you really are.  Oh yeah, and your too dumb to get a joke!  Mary,  you go gurl. . . all the way to the bank.  You’re smart AND funny!

  • Zapcypher

    so if “The Man” is black, is it ok?  Can’t people of other “races” be offended by this?

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  • Dbrowm513123

    This is why white people think we’re dumb . Wtf cares she’s gettin payed and everyone likes chicken . Damn you goes are stupid

    • Suemod

       I’m “white” and I don’t think you’re dumb…but your statement is as broad and biased as the one you’re concerned about hearing.  My best friend in the U.S. isn’t “white”. In fact, I don’t know anyone who is “white” but mainly because I never ever use “black and white” to describe anyone.  Seems such a shame that America is still locked into these child like terms.

  • JillianXO

    A well-known celebrity is hired (presumably for excellent money) to make a commercial that appeals to a demographic?  This has happened for as long as commercials, celebrities and marketing specialists have existed.  Get over it.  And you’re an illegal download type of girl?  No wonder Mary (or another singer/celeb) has to take jobs in commercials!!!!  Shame on you, hypocrite!  I bet you don’t have anything bad to say about white celebs (whose music you illegally downloaded) who make commercials.

  • Lapaul

    Oh for God’s sakes…how ridiculous.  Are you saying black people cannot talk or sing about chicken now?  If you are saying that, it is YOU that is perpetuating a stereotype.  We, as a culture are far beyond this now and you are making a big deal out of absolutely nothing.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-B-Healy/1009598317 John B. Healy

    What’s the big deal? Until you mentioned it I didn’t know there was some sort of negative stereotype of black women signing about chicken. Is it somehow degrading to sing about chicken for black people? Why?

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  • http://profiles.google.com/autumnbfarmer Autumn F.

    No. My problem isn’t that Mary is in this commercial..my problem is the WAY she’s portrayed in the commercial..why couldn’t they just cut to her in the commercial and have her talking a little about the new menu items? Why does she have to belt out stupid phrases she’d never sing about..lettuce..three cheeses..?? The way they target certain demographics has a connection to class and the way we view our class status as a group. This just does a disservice to us in my opinion.. It’s an awful commercial, not well done and typical. It’s 2012..where is the INNOVATION?

    But..maybe BK saw this video?

  • Plumbuddy

    I personally don’t see anything wrong with the ad.  People are on here screaming about her pushing for the unhealthy food of Burger King, but I’m like what about the black celebrities that have endorsed McDonald’s? It’s like come on people we have way more stuff to be worried about like why a man in Florida is still free, after shooting a unarmed young black male, then to be sitting here worried about Mary J. Blige singing about some stupid chicken wrap!!

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  • http://profile.yahoo.com/X6E6UXCKKPNALIYSECNADDW6RQ Marci

    I have not seen it but I guess Mary needs some money. I remember seeing an interview with Chaka Khan and she said she would never do a commercial selling chicken or watermelon. Now, I love fried chicken and I love watermelon, and maybe the commercial would not be so bad it she was not singing to the chicken. I don’t know, they offered her a big check and she took it. Her taste level has always been suspect, so I am not that surprised. Loved the open letter.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=703291673 facebook-703291673

    This is business. You’re making it personal. That’s a mistake.

  • Steve

    I am a white male. Educate me, please.  What is it specifically that offends? I am sincere in my question, I honestly do not ‘get’ it.

    • Franny

      Hey Steve- Some people are offended by the style of persona that Mary was directed to act as in the commercial itself. I myself don’t need to see it to understand why some people are  upset. On the other hand, there are some very valid other comments about other very big celebrities in the past advertising for other products & there being no social, news worthy  outcry. I also liked the comment about Renay saying  very honestly that she downloads Mary’s music, which I find very amusing as well because if Renay has any love for Mary to begin with, (which is claimed), then one would not be illegally downloading one of their favorite artists music in the first place! Over all, African American people are passionate people Steve, and they have a gamut of comments from outrage, to ‘hey why is this important?’. So take from my explanation/opinion what you will. Did that help you ‘get’ it?

      • Steve

        Thank you, what I have come away from this with is that there is an ethnic component to fried chicken.  I did not know that. In my travels, specially in certian areas in Asia American fried chicken stores ment a place I could eat (safely)

    • Renay Alize

      Steve (and all who politely or impolitely disagree), 

      The commercial is full of stereotypes. Mary is portraying an abrasive black woman. Surely you’ve heard the false notion that all black women have attitudes. Furthermore, there’s another false assumption that black people have an irrational affinity for chicken. As I stated, plenty of people like chicken and shouldn’t feel ashamed for liking and eating it; however when you see these type of commercials time and time again, (i.e. Black people singing and dancing for chicken– que McDonald’s nugget series) you have to wonder what the hell is going on?!? Why are these campaigns so limited in creativity? Why aren’t corporations more sensitive to these stereotypes? If Mary was the first black woman singing for chicken, I might have been more understanding but there have been a string of these commercials.It’s perplexing. And then there’s the fact that Mary is far too established in her career to do this. It’s all wrong. 

      And since I’m here let me address Franny as well. 
       I said I usually download but I bought this single because I loved it that much. Please read more carefully.

      • Steve

        Thank you, but please know; I did not dissaggree, I honestly did not know what was offensive.  I think that I know now, if I am correct, there is an ethnic component to chicken.  I was unaware. I realize you may find that difficult to credit. I realize most readers here come to your material with a set of shared perceptions. This was very interesting to me.  In my specific ethnic experience (Jewish) chicken, specially as soup, is considered a comfort food and a restorative.

        • Renay Alize

          Oh yeah. I know you were just trying to get some information. You were in no way rude or nasty which is why I decided to respond to your polite inquiry. 

      • reality

        If you hunt hard enough you’ll find stereotypes in ALL ads where one or other groups are used to promote a certain product as that’s how advertising works.  There’s been a multitude of white and other ethnic celebrities used in a far more obtuse manner than this ad but we never had the sort of faux outcry before so why now. Unless you’re a thin skinned individual with self esteem issues it would never occur to most that black people have a specific affinity for fried chicken so whats the real issue here. On your last point, since when were you the ‘moral guardian’ for Mary as I’m sure she’s more than grown up to decide what she wants to do especially with a fat pay check and good luck to her.

      • jillianxo

        You said you bought one song legally.  But you also say “I’m typically an illegal download type of girl.”  So you typically feel it’s OK to steal from other recording artists?  And since you typically download music illegally, are we really to believe you never ever illegally downloaded other Mary J. songs?  

        More to the point, you are calling this artist a buffoon for legally earning a living and choosing to do an ad that she knew was about chicken.  You come off very hypocritical to be raving on and on against her character while yours doesn’t seem so shiny.  You are aware that illegally downloading music is a crime, right?  Mary committed no crime here.  A few of your points might have been taken more seriously if you seemed like a person with a better moral compass.

  • Jlanierea

    Like Mary, but never thought she can sing.

  • Richardtheblond

    Wow….I think y’all need to get busy.  You have waaaaay too much time to think of nonsense.

  • Briggstir

    if there were no black people in a comercial people complain, if there are black people in a commeri=cial they complain WTF. I think a much worse commercial is when the litle black kid comes running to his mom and says he finally made #2, and the mom is so happy until she finds out its in the tub, this is a degrading commercial

  • http://www.facebook.com/RosarioRed Rosario Stefania Scarsci

    I haven’t seen the commercial, tbh.

  • Tristarmusic2

    This is absolute nonsense . A sad attempt at morality while openly admitting to be an “illegal downloader” of music online …why doesn’t the eloquent Renay think about the ramifications of 
    her own actions before making a case of Mary’s choice to make this commercial. What a hypocrite.

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  • 1gadawg

    maybe KFC be hiring!!

  • Lela

    Isn’t it about time we got over all this nonsense? A black woman singing a commerical for chicken is only a problem if we make it a problem. Let’s get over ourselves and stop looking for trouble where there is none.

  • Klmw14

    Tough love?  I saw the tough but where was the love?  Way harsh, sistah!

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  • Raineman

    can believe i just watch your advertisment twice trying to watch the video…Funny how you complain and stir it up then make money off eyeballs but dont show it or even let people know its no longer available…Who is worse? you or the subject you are targeting?

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  • Lamellee

    Shut up its just a commercial I wonder did you bother to do an open letter to Mary about her FAWN work you sound jaded why?… Why.. Why

  • Shine45

    Dont we have anything better to discuss? I mean seriously??

  • Me

    I swear our people have no priorities. What people SHOULD be pissed about is people like Montell Williams and Magic peddling rent-to-own services and payday loans to black folks. THAT is not cool. I don’t see what the big deal is about Mary singing about a chicken sandwich. So what? 

  • http://deborah.dk/ Deborah

    Very difficult to comment, since the video has now been removed for some reason??

  • F3ral Anarchy

    after reading the comments now i understand why we are not in entertainment and she is.  Im not mad at mary in any way shape or form.  She has massive crossover appeal and understands the business.  Everytime that commercial plays mary gets a check!  Nobody called out MJ when he did the pepsi commercial years ago, nobody called out jordan and spike lee with the air jordan commercials back in the day, nobody called out lebron with sprite, nobody called out ice cube with the recent beer commercials, nobody called out reggie bush with the pizza ads…i could go on and on for years back…yet yall wanna point your finger at mary?!?! smh…

    • JN31

      I think the problem, at least from my perspective is how Mary is portrayed in the commercial.

      You have the polite white man ordering food and then here comes the abrasive black woman cutting him off and then singing about chicken. That can’t sit right with a lot of people and that’s where (again from my perspective) the flack is coming from.

      Also, Mary is too well respected and too deep in the game to have done a commercial like this.  Whoever thought it was a good PR move should clearly be relieved from that position. Burger King is just another corporation that uses the black demographic as a means to boost sales. Not realizing that all black people let alone don’t all eat fried chicken but also meat products. I can’t blame them for doing what these suits think of our community. But Mary could have walked away from this. Yea, they could have replaced her with someone else willing to shuck and jive over chicken but at least she would have had her dignity. I’m still a fan but greatly disappointed. 

      • Trdriver430

        Yes great point, maybe her finances aren’t what they once were no knows. Burger king wraps when the other chains wraps were mediocre at best. Nasty

      • http://twitter.com/VinceNotVance Vince O.

        I think people are looking into this commercial way too much. Bringing up this idea of “the abrasive black woman” cutting off the “polite white man” is almost as if people are actively looking for something to be offended by in this commercial. Considering the bile that this commercial is getting, you’d think Mary was wearing some sort of Mammy costume or something and calling the BK manager “masser”.

        It’s a commercial. It’s stupid, like most commercials. People choose to find hints of racism because they want to, not because it’s apparent.

        Also, Mary J. Blige is a brilliant artist, but no one is above a paycheck. C’mon. Really, does hawking some crappy tortilla wrap somehow negate the brilliance of  ”No More Drama” or “Share My World”? Did Michael Jackson starring in a Pepsi commercial retcon Thriller into becoming an awful album? Doubt it.

  • fitnessforlife

    whatever pays the bill, i guess. she could have done worst things. 

  • R Wilson

    we stay cooning.cause black people love white people more that there own race

    • Hun

      No you have it wrong, BLACK people love their race and want to see positive things for their people…”Uncle Toms” aka (that other derogatory word im not going to mention),are the ones who revert back to the “buffoonary” when it comes to their interactions white people,or anybody for that matter. They are quick to act ignorant and confirm every stereotype under the sun!! Why ??? Who knows, im still puzzled as to why there are so many IGNORANT people in the world. SMH

      • Mike

        The problem with some black people is that they think they are the only ones who know how other black people should act. You being one of them Hun.

    • LGadson

      OMG! I can’t seem to view the commercial. Since when did we stop eating chicken? Is eating chicken racist? Is the commercial that bad Wilson? Was she dressed like Aunt Jemima when she sang? Luther Vandross used to do McDonald’s jingles before he made it big. What’s the problem?

      • Stopcomplaining

        There is no problem with this commercial.  People just love to go online and complain.  Stopping Mary’s paychecks.

  • Miss_Understood

    She probably needs the money…it’s gotta be hard trying to compete in an industry with Beyonce, Rihanna and Nicki Minaj…I’m not really surprised because she always struck me as “HOOD” like your auntie that walks down to the corner store with a house phone, eating a bowl of cereal in her house shoes and doesn’t know how to turn off her phone and Khia’s “Don’t Trust No N___A” plays during church…shrug…

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1019917022 Dollie Linton III

       You are really ill-informed on Mary J. Blige. Please do a little research about the subject before commenting for now on.

    • Just saying!

      Wooo Miss_Understood….I think you mis-understood Mary’s music. You put “video phone”, “S&M” and “Stupid Hoe” next to Ms. “No More Drama” and all of a sudden Mary is the one that doesn’t know how to act? I admit this commercial was a bad move but wow. You clearly don’t know her stuff. 

    • Yvetteluv

      did she really say competing with beyonce (no comment) rihanna (clueless) and nicki minaj (nonrapping hood wanna be)…..yes please research before you comment on mary like that. there are quite a few restaurants that are ‘soliciting’ to the urban community with stars and music and other things to lure us in to spend more money than we already do. there are lots of ways around the unhealthy meals obtained but the sideshow attractions have got to stop!

    • Trdriver430

      Great point !!!!!

    • MANORWOMAN

       MISS_UNDERSTOOD, change your name to MISS_DONTKNOWSHIT, when it comes to this subject and the idiots that agreed with you.

    • John

      Your 100% on point. I never understood why so many people found her to be “deep”. Have they heard her in interviews? When has you said/done something that would lead someone to believe she wouldn’t shuck and jive? This is a woman who admitted to being illiterate up until a couple of years ago. This is their “idol”?!? SMH… She had some jams back in the day but her time has passed

  • Angr30

    I just checked out the commercial and I have to agree that I was like WTH too! Is she broke or does she owe someone a favour. It’s just lame.

  • FromUR2UB

    What’s wrong with it? It wasn’t the most creative commercial I’ve ever seen, but I expected to see her in a chicken suit the way everyone is going on about it.  We’ve got a lot more serious issues to worry about than people linking chicken to black people.

    • LyricsRme

      Finally, a voice of reason!  I was like, “this is what the big deal is about?  Totally with you in that we’ve got bigger issues; save the indignation for something more important.

  • LaLaLaMeansILoveYou

     No worse than all of McDonald’s commercials in years featuring ONLY black people dancing and singing about chicken nuggets and frappe’s…what the heck happened to “Calvin”??

    • LyricsRme

      He’s getting his tax forms together.

    • mugwort2

      I remember when McDonald ads only showed whites and the photos in their restaurants including ones in the inner city, aka ghetto,  were whites only

  • Johnylee

    People…chill. I don’t hear anybody screaming about Salma Halek, David Beckham or Jay Leno doing this promotion. I doubt seriously that they needed the money or publicity either, it was just a highly paid  business deal. Why can’t Mary J. do it? Because it’s chicken? C’mon now, we got “REAL” isssues to complain about. smdh LOL

    • dddooonnnttt

      I noticed that Selma, Jay and David had ones, but I didn’t watch them. Are their ads promoting the chicken wrap too?

      • http://lizburr.com Liz

        I saw Jay’s. It played upon his car collecting hobby, so I guess I see why Mary (a singer) would be singing in her version of the commercial. Still, they could have tried something else. Nobody else was shuckin and jiving for chicken. I don’t have a problem with Mary getting her check to push fast food. I do kinda have a problem with the way she did it though. That’s all. 

        • vwells1

          Jay’s commercial was cool but I did peep that random black man he had riding shot gun in the car. He passed that chicken right to him. LOOOL le mess. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/YorkieMane Kevin Bernard

    know damn well she did’nt need that money that bad,B.K. is ruining the health of people,c’mon sis

    • Ettadacinom

      She said it was suppose to be in a dream sequence…..so it would’ve made better sense

  • Hhalto

    The ad is wrong on so many levels: a major star lowering themselves to sell unhealthy fast food; the idea that ads have to have beats and dancing to attract people of color to the product; a poorly thought out story for the ad that’s a retread of similar ideas used in other fast food ads. 

    • Trdriver430

      @ HHALTO…. Wow you’re so on point and correct, real talk !!

    • reality

      Obviously you haven’t ever worked in advertising and are clueless in how to structure an advertising campaign. There’s been many a major star used in adverts like Pepsi & Coke along with all sorts of other products and anyone worth their salt in advertising will use well know celebrities that are best suited to promote the product. OK, you might think this ad is rubbish but that’s your opinion and had it been allowed to run, BK could have judged how effective it might have been.

  • Lisa

    Well said and what a very polite way to express yourself Mary can only respect you as a fan. Thanks you.

  • http://www.queeninheels.com/ Sharon

    I love me some Mary J Blige.I repeat. . . Love me some Mary J Blige. But when I saw this commerecial I too was like, “why Mary why?” The money could not have been that good. Someone on her team has failed her by telling her this was a good idea.

  • Kena1908

    I don’t think this is big deal.   Are black people restricted from doing commercials about chicken now? c’mon

    • Prssykitty

       I don’t understand the big deal! This is really all lost on me. Do black people really not like chicken that much? Is it because Mary is black? Really please tell me what’s the issue? I thought the song was catchy. Crispy chicken, fresh lettuce…..

    • L-Boogie

      LOL!  Good point.  Last time I checked chicken was an universal food.

  • RedButterfly81

    I saw the commercial on YouTube this morning and I was like “Why Mary Why?!” too. But hey, at least she got paid for doing it.

    • Klove220

      All money is not good money. She should’ve have known better.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7PIXEDWOHQWNYPHJM3YRMJ37OA KnowNow2

      Explain what you see wrong with this ad?

      • RedButterfly81

        She’s singing about fried chicken, repeat FRIED CHICKEN, or as my mom calls it The Black People National Bird.

        • reality

          From where I come from fried chicken is just that and most people like it including my wife and I and we’re as white as they come. Gotta be the first time I’ve heard that fried chicken was food for one ethnic group only. By the same token if a white singer sang a song about ‘fish & chips’ I should take offense. 

          • http://www.facebook.com/kayla.esbjorn Kayla Ancrum

            Well, you’re lucky you don’t have to worry about these things. One of the privileges of being white. Go ahead and pat yourself on the back.

            However, we black people have to scrutinize every example of ourselves released by the media because if we don’t some crazy ish be happening. Like this, for example.

            And I would love to be on the team of “Everyone eats fried chicken. Its not a black people only food.”. Really, I would.
            Except if you go ask racist backwater people what black people eat/like they will say the following: Fried chicked, watermelon and kool-aide. The fact that it is even on this list should make you understand why some black people are unhappy that MJB was singing all thirstily about liking fried chicken on national television.

            • Perry

              You should lay off “Reality”. Fact of the matter is MJB decided to do a promo for a paying client.  It’s business.  However “White Privilege” isn’t the issue, and as for the patting of the back comment, that was just rude. As black people, we need to step back from issues that aren’t issues. Be pissed about Trayvon Martin, go to the streets and protest Wall St, be vigilant when it comes to the education of our young black men and women.  Don’t yell at a white dude because he likes chicken and Mary J made a conscience business choice.

        • oorfenegro

          I’m still trying to understand the fuss.  Cadillac have long been associated with Black folks with money, including pimps and drug dealers, but I didn’t hear any fuss when well known African Americans appeared in Cadillac ads. 

      • Dione Robertson

        NEVER mention (if you are a white corporation without a black rapper) chicken, watermelon, and THE N word to the Black American public.  While many black use the above word/eat the food; there is a wealth of blackface theater that mocked American Blacks while white actors got paid for it.  

        • DogSwallow

          But it’s chicken… If Burger King didn’t sell chicken previously and thought that Mary J. Blige would be their entry point, I see it.  But chicken is delicious and Mary J. Blige probably has a high Q score.  

      • jackieOsassin

        god, that’s what i want to know, too.

        seriously, everyone? SERIOUSLY? we’re mad at mary j. blige for marketing not only a very good song on the side, but also being such a powerful star that a failing restaurant would use her as a tool to try and get more people hip to their awful food? really? that’s what we’re mad at? because, honestly i just watched it and if anything i thought it was just a tad funny (especially those little kids at the front raising the roof. haha)

        but more importantly, we as a race have to transcend these stereotypes. the more we’re boxed in by them (chicken, kinky hair, big noses, wide-toothed smiles, watermelon) and how they’re supposedly “used” by other races to make fun of us in what i’m sure was a harmful and business-oriented light, the more we’re going to be seeing this “race exploitation” everywhere we look.

        “oh look at that black man! he’s eating that watermelon in public! doesn’t he know white people are just going to think he’s some porch c**n???”

        i rest my case.

      • Tenishatyler

        I don’t see anything wrong with this ad. People always want to make something out of nothing. Did you know Salma Hayek and Jay Leno, also are advertising the snack wraps? Is this racist? Stop crying wolf all of the time or eventually when racial injustice does happen you will be ignored. In the case of Mary and the ad, they were trying to attract a certain demographic. Why not Mary? We all know and love her. Why can’t she support it? (If the commercial showed you Taylor Swift singing about the product, frankly, you wouldn’t care, therefore you wouldn’t purchase it)  
        And, what’s so bad about chicken? Chicken is fairly inexpensive and healthier for you than most meats.Things like this only remain stereotypes if we continue to acknowledge them as so.

    • Lavette_packard

      Don’t nobody pay Mary’s bills. Stop judging the queen of soul. She probably wasn’t thinking about racism. Just because your black doesn’t mean every black person see racism the same way. However, everybody loves chicken and watermelon. If food define who you are as a person you might want to seek counseling because you probably percieve everything as racism. Just because the burger King used Mary to sing the song that doesn’t mean they did it because she is a black woman.

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