[@NikeUK]’s ‘Nothing beats a Londoner’ ad draws unnecessary backlash

 

Nike’s new advert is proving popular and is highlighting London’s diversity, featuring Micheal DapaahGiggs, Skepta and more in 3 min video.

This incredible video pays homage to the UK capital and showcases grime artists like AJ Tracey, Santan Dave, and even J Hus alongside 200 young Londoners, celebrating London’s sports and culture, with Mo Farah making an appearance. The camera pans through London, skimming through different sports including Ice hockey, swimming, and even boxing, paying tribute to the hard work of young people dedicated to sports.

It starts off with Skepta going into a corner shop, talking on the phone with his 2015 hit ‘Shutdown’ instrumental playing in the background. Micheal Dapaah makes a hilarious appearance, who’s painfully rejected by Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi at a barber shop after he claimed that they’re best mates. There’s just so much going on in the video that it is almost a sneak peek into the London that they never show you on television.

Photo Courtesy of Nike Via YouTube

While it did gain the praise of so many people, especially the way it celebrated Black joy and the Black youth culture in London, it did have some backlash. Many complained that a large demographic. that is, Asians, were left out.

Many who agree with this tweet have argued that for an advertisement that has triumphed London’s diversity, ironically, has left out a large demographic that were already underrepresented in sports.

However, even though it is true that Nike could have done so much better with Asian representation, for example ‘Diary of a Bad Man’ Humza Arshad, possibly given a part, but the truth is that there is hardly any Asian grime artists, known to the public sphere that could have even be included, to begin with.

There’s nothing wrong with fighting for Asian representation and there’s truth to their underrepresentation. What is completely wrong is to fight for Asian representation in mainstream media when Black culture is given a chance which is hardly ever represented in such a good light. Both groups are clearly underrepresented in the media but the argument is heavily tinged with antiblackness that it’s hard to tell from what is genuine from what isn’t.

The real question over here is, why fight for representation now? During when coincidently Nike releases an Ad where Black people dominate the scene when representation could have been fought most videos where White people are dominant?

Choosing the fight now was clearly in bad taste and was at the wrong time.

As minorities we both do face all types of racism, whether institutional or not but we mustn’t forget that Black people are disproportionately profiled. At the end of the day, Asian people do not get sent back home because of their ‘ethnic’ hair and aren’t heavily incarcerated because of the colour of their skin.

The backlash was really not needed and it only proves that minorities have a long way to go when it comes to supporting each other against a system that’s against us.

 

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