Post Classifieds

Coolest Monkey in the Jungle

By Devon Hall
On January 19, 2018

Photo from: Associated Press

H&M is currently under criticism for an ad where a black boy modeled a sweatshirt that read, “Coolest Monkey In The Jungle.” His white counterpart wore a bright orange hoodie with the words printed “Survival Expert.”

Social media has gone into a frenzy since, and the hoodie image started trending within hours of the ad being posted. In reaction, H&M quickly removed the ad and is no longer selling either hoodie.

I want to start off by saying, personally, that I am not surprised this has happened. Many people were outraged that something like this would occur in today’s society. Such as The Weeknd, who went to Twitter to express his feelings on the situation. He tweeted, “Woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. I’m deeply offended and will not be working with @H&M anymore."

Rapper G-Eazy also said, “After seeing the disturbing image yesterday, my excitement over our global campaign quickly evaporated, and I’ve decided at this time our partnership needs to end.”

However, I was surprised by the mother of a young black boy in today’s society would even tolerate this buffoonery. The mother, Terry Mango, wrote on social media, “That’s my son … I’ve been to all photo shoots and this was not an exception, everyone is entitled to their opinion about this. This is one of hundreds of outfits my son has modeled … stop crying wolf all the time, unnecessary issue.”

She also told people to “get over it.” Wow! The fact that she is so ignorant to the fact that her son was used as a catalyst for racism just proves the racist patriarchal society we live in is working.

Other celebrities, such as LeBron James and Sean “Diddy” Combs, have taken a different approach. The Cleveland Cavaliers star wrote on Instagram Monday, “U got us all wrong! And we ain’t going for it! Straight up!” 

He addressed H&M’s official account and featured an edited version of the ad, which includes a crown on the boy’s head and sweatshirt, labeled, “KING OF THE WORLD.” It’s also been reported Diddy has offered the young model a $1 million contract to model for his fashion line, Sean John.

Photo from: @kingjames

I think LeBron and Diddy are onto something here. Turning this negative to empower the black community. Both are using their celebrity empowered platform to the best of their capabilities. They have the power and influence to bring something like this to the light. Both stars have said this calls for action. What will your call be?

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