Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

NBC pulls racist Trump ad, perhaps after watching it on its own network

Illustration for article titled NBC pulls racist Trump ad, perhaps after watching it on its own network
Screenshot: YouTube

Because it’s a day of the week ending in “-day,” there’s once more exhausting news about something terrible related to the Trump administration. Only this time, NBC is the source of ire, as the network reminds itself how to say, “Oops, forget that happened” after airing a racist campaign advertisement.

If you haven’t seen it (we’re certainly not going to contribute to giving it any clicks by linking to it), the ad—a shorter version of an even more odious one Trump tweeted last week—tries to link the “migrant caravan” still comically far away from our borders with murderers coming into the country illegally, probably so they can, you know, kill the innocent children of fine upstanding Republicans, and we’ll all be dead soon if we don’t do something about it. You can get details of its racism (and the original’s outright falsehoods) from this Washington Post op-ed, but in essence, it’s the kind of ad made to stoke the worst fears and impulses of Trump’s base, while sane people look at it and go, “Dear lord, that’s racist.”

Unfortunately, sane people were apparently in short supply at NBC over the weekend, as the network made the decision to air the ad during Sunday Night Football—the only network to actually air it as an ad, and not a talking point during a news broadcast. According to The Hollywood Reporter, NBC had a change of heart: “After further review we recognize the insensitive nature of the ad and have decided to cease airing it across our properties as soon as possible,” said an NBC spokesperson. Left unspoken is how many complaints from outraged viewers translated into “further review,” though it’s cute how the press statement makes it seem like someone actually watched the ad again and thought, “Oh, now I get it—it’s super-racist.”


In unrelated news, maybe you should consider voting tomorrow?

(UPDATE: Fox News is also pulling the ad, according to CNN’s Brian Stelter. So, just to recap, even overt political allies of the President of the United States are refusing to air an ad his administration produced, because it’s too racist. America!)

Alex McLevy is a writer and editor at The A.V. Club, and would kindly appreciate additional videos of robots failing to accomplish basic tasks.

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