Kellogg’s Corn Pops is going through a redesign because, apparently, the little pop characters showcased on its boxes are racist.
Or, more to truth: one pop.
That’s right. A single, solitary brownish-looking pop among the sea of golden-yellow pops has sparked a firestorm.
And by firestorm, we mean a complaint.
But the “r” word was slung — racism — so it might as well be a zillion complaints. Don’t want to get boycotted by the NAACP. The group, after all, just sent out an advisory warning about American Airlines, saying once upon a time, a black person or two was asked to switch seats and therefore, blacks may want to consider flying another line.
Just think what the NAACP could do to Corn Pops.
Anyhow, here’s the story, courtesy of USA Today: “Kellogg’s will be redesigning Corn Pops cereal boxes after a complain about racially insensitive art on the packaging. The [company] said … it will replace the cover drawing of carton characters shaped like corn kernels populating a shopping mall. The corn pop characters are shown shopping, playing in an arcade or frolick[ing] in a fountain. One skateboards down an escalator.”
But one — one wayward one — operates a floor waxer. And it’s this one that grabbed the attention of Saladin Ahmed, a Marvel Comics’ Black Bolt series writer.
He wrote on Twitter: “Why is literally the only brown corn pop on the whole cereal box the janitor? this is teaching kids racism.”
Sorry, Ahmed, but first off, kids probably wouldn’t notice and second off, even if they did, they wouldn’t automatically jump to make a connection with racism.
He followed with another tweet: “yes its a tiny thing, but when you see your kid staring at this over breakfast and realize millions of other kids are doing the same …”
Once again — sorry. Just don’t see it. But Kellogg’s, as companies these days so often do, jumped at the suggestion of racism and rather than explain, hey Ahmed, it’s just a Corn Pop, no need to get in a bind, public relations put out this quick message: “Kellogg is committed to diversity & inclusion. We did not intend to offend — we apologize. the artwork is updated & will be in stores soon.”
That’s great. One complaint — and the whole company moves.
What’s next, Tony the Tiger — too masculine? The Pillsbury Doughboy — too white? Not to make light; racism is never funny. But, seriously, a corn pop that’s racist? OK — now that’s funny. They’re Corn Pops, people. Eat ’em. Don’t analyze ’em.