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H&M ‘Deeply Sorry’ Over Racist AF Monkey Ad, As Artists Clap Back Creatively

Clothing retailer in hot water for racist ‘Coolest Monkey in the jungle’ advert

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Swedish clothing retailer H&M has issued an apology following a racist advert featuring a black child clad in a green sweater with the words ‘Coolest Monkey in The Jungle’ emblazoned on it.

The racially insensitive advert has since sparked debates about whether or not deliberate malicious intent informed the sweater and the ad accompanying it.

Several local and international celebrities have aired their disappointment with the brand for the ad, with American artists The Weeknd and Eazy G pulling their endorsements for the company.

Prominent names such as Diddy, Lebron James, Cassper Nyovest, Minnie Dlamini and amongst others, Somizi have openly lambasted H & M as calls for boycotts gain momentum on social media platforms.

H & M said on Monday that they are ‘deeply sorry’ that the whole thing happened. They have also removed the cringe-worthy item from their stores.

In a turn of events, several creative artworks have since emerged to challenge the offensive narrative.

Here are some of the coolest of the bunch

I created this based off of @mrchrisclassic correction of @hm Error. A great role model and man I look up to wrote this message @mrchrisclassic : “I made this because I dont wanna see this young Kings face anymore with the shirt he was hired to wear by H&M. I’m almost certain the Persson Family and their $31 Billion wont care in Sweden but… this lil guy will see his pics and the mockery one day because the internet doesnt erase… so I just hope he gets to see this one or any like it that celebrate him.” . Tarajosu: I also want to say I don’t wear H&M or Zara or any of those types of brands. I wear offbrands and I don’t own more clothes than I can fit in my carry on luggage. I buy pieces that last or I make them last. Someone at H&M knew this would create controversy. So many issues to tackle. Don’t support brands that don’t support you. It’s simple. . #Mysavoirfaire #king #empowerment

A post shared by 🇯🇲TARAJOSU🇬🇾 (@tarajosu) on

The coolest KING 👑 in the world #kingod #blackkings #akomicsart #artlife

A post shared by Kervin Andre (@akomicsart) on

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Tributes Pour in For Enhle Gambushe

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Enhle Gambushe

The South African entertainment industry has lost yet another young performer. Imbewu (The Seed) actress, Enhle Gambushe, died in a car crash this past Saturday.

The car crash is reported to have taken place in Durban on Saturday morning after the vehicle she had been in drove into a wall, leading to one more death of an unnamed female passenger.

RELATED: DID THE INDUSTRY TURN ITS BACK ON PROKID? 

Enhle , who played the role of Nonhlanhla on Imbewu, is being described in an official statement by the etv and Grapevine Productions as a “a talented young actress with a promising future. She had forged strong bonds with her colleagues and will be sorely missed by the production’s cast and crew.”

THE TWEET FROM THE IMBEWU: THE SEED ACCOUNT

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Caster Semenya’s Born To Do It Nike Ad Is Bomb AF

Caster Semenya sprints past the challenges she’s faced in her career in this victorious Nike ad

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Caster Semenya Nike ad

Nike continues shaking the advertising table with their recent radically transformative adverts, which find the global sports brand taking strong political stances in their latest Just Do It campaign.

Departing sharply from the clean aesthetic that has come to define the sometimes sterile marketing of major brands, it appears the brand has decided to have an authentic voice, even if it comes with some backlash.

A series of visually captivating clips have been banged out in quick succession over the last few weeks, and many of the adverts have people talking, Nike trending, and sneakers being burnt, literally.

READ: CASTER SEMENYA WEDS LONG TERM GIRLFRIEND 

It’s just days after the controversial Colin Kaepernick advert first premiered, resulting in massive backlash that saw those opposed to the national anthem protests burning their pairs.

And now the brand has debuted a mini Caster Semenya documentary, in which she stands her ground gallantly against the persistent, and often quite violent, opposition she has been facing throughout her career as one of South Africa’s most exceptional athletes, as well as one of the world’s fastest women.

Over the years, the legitimacy of Caster’s womanhood has been a matter of debate for various sporting bodies, some who’ve tried forcing to take medication to suppress testosterone in her body.

“Would you prefer I hadn’t worked so hard?”, Semenya asks in a powerful monologue cascading on the Born to do it through line. “Would it be easier for you if I wasn’t so fast ?”

The advert distils the athlete’s journey in a marriage of eras that jumps from her childhood into the women she’s become, a sprinter with a few records under her belt.

“Too bad. I was born to do it.”, she says.

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Boity Apologising for Her Throwback Homophobic Remarks Is A Good Start

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Boity
Photo Credit: Boity via Instagram

The surfacing of archived tweets containing homophobic sentiments by a slew of South African celebrities has opened dialogues about the toxic heterosexist landscape of the local entertainment business. 

Just days after her first ever Hip Hop joint set the streets ablaze and earned the media-personality-turned-rapper her first number one on iTunes, Boity has had to apologise for homophobic remarks she tweeted almost a decade ago. She also acknowledged that while her views have changed along with her growth, she used to be quite the outspoken homophobe back then.

The apology comes after a series of old homophobic tweets resurfaced. She was only 19 years old when she vented her hateful spleen towards the queer community, but she has grown a lot over the years. Her views on sexuality were “warped” back then, but she knows better now.

Tweeted Boity amid backlash; “A decade ago, I was naive, homophobic, young and didn’t know better”, she explained. ” I was 19 and my views on sexuality were warped. We grow, our views change and we do better. It’s gut-wrenching and embarrassing to see them now however I am not the same person I was 10 years ago.”

She proceeded to apologise to everyone she has hurt in the old tweets.


The tweets in question were published over different occasions. In one, she is upset by what she perceives to be a surge in the representation of black gay male romance in local TV soapies.

In another scathing tweet, she leaves no shred of doubt about how she feels about the queer community.  
Boity’s apology was met with further debates about the unaddressed homophobia that goes on unchecked in the South African entertainment business.

Despite increasing visibility, what with the likes of Somizi and, amongst other Nakhane Toure proudly shining the spotlight on the existence of gay people in the creative industry, there’s no doubt the business remains rigidly heterosexist.

Tweets allegedly published on Nadia Nakai and Rouge’s Twitter years ago have also attracted some interest, but the two rappers are yet to take actual ownership. That remains to be seen.

While polarising, Boity’s apology has been embraced by many as a good start at acknowledging the pain she has caused many people. She herself was young at the time, and how many of us wish we could have expressed ourselves differently ten years ago.

 

 

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