Proctor & Gamble’s Emotional New Ad Tackles Issue of Racial Bias In America
Consumer goods corporation Procter & Gamble is selling more than soap in a new thought-provoking ad set to hit TV screens next week.
The commercial, fittingly titled ‘The Talk,’ depicts African-American mothers telling their children the hard truth about growing up Black in America, describing instances of racial bias and stereotyping that Black people often face.
“You are not pretty ‘for a Black girl,'” a mother tells her young daughter as she fixes her hair in the mirror. “You are beautiful. Period.”
The two-minute ad also features a poignant exchange between a mom and her teenage daughter as she gets behind the wheel for the first time.
“Now, when you get pulled over …” the mother starts to say before her daughter cuts her off, reassuring her that she’s a good driver. “Don’t worry,” she says.
“Baby, this is not about you getting a ticket,” her mother responds, with a look of concern. “This is about you not coming home.”
Speaking with CBS News, P&G’s chief brand officer Marc Pritchard said the powerful new ad is part of a larger campaign called “My Black is Beautiful,” which showcases the diversity of Black beauty in media and celebrates Black community and culture.
“What ‘The Talk’ “enables people to do is to have conversations about bias, and when you have conversations and promote dialogue, that promotes understanding,” Pritchard said.
Since hitting the internet late last month, the commercial has garnered mixed reactions from users on social media. Many users praised Procter & Gamble for the moving ad.
— Peacediva (@peacediva7) August 3, 2017
Thank you, #procterandgamble. You hit the nail right on the head. These talks are real. I've had them with my kids. They are a sad reality.
— Jamal L. Burt (@JamalLBurt) August 2, 2017
#procterandgamble Thank you for "The Talk". I hope more companies do what you did with this commercial. Please ignore the ignorant rants!
— MeganSmith.com (@MeganSmithPhoto) August 4, 2017
— Sandy (@sandypersisted) August 3, 2017
Meanwhile, others (mainly white users) described the commercial as “racist” and even “anti-white.”
— Derek (@Derek00884021) August 3, 2017
— David Pringle (@david_pringle) August 2, 2017
— Metal Fusion Rules (@FusionRules) August 3, 2017
P&G said “The Talk” is slated to debut on television next week. The company said it will produce similar films that focus on issues like gender inequality in the future.