Dodge dropped trou and proceeded to take a giant dump on the memory of Martin Luther King for a Super Bowl ad. One Twitter user had the perfect response.
In the original ad, a speech by MLK — “The Drum Major Instinct,” which he delivered exactly 50 years ago at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia on February 4 1968 — about striving to be great is heard while patriotic images flash by of a military regiment marching in dress blues, turkeys being handed out to a community from the back of a flatbed, and the chrome grill of a Dodge truck shining as its tires slash through a muddy road. If you can stomach it, here’s the full ad:
Predictably, the ad fell flat on its face, with Twitter universally castigating Dodge for sullying the memory of America’s most beloved civil rights leader all in the name of selling trucks. Even The King Center, founded by the slain reverend’s wife, Coretta Scott King, weighed in, saying it did not approve of MLK’s voice or speech being used for the ad (this means the King estate, which is managed by Dexter King and Martin Luther King III, was the responsible entity).
— Nick Jack Pappas (@Pappiness) February 5, 2018
If you thought that MLK/Dodge commercial was bad, just wait until you see the upcoming Carl's Jr. ad starring Gandhi.
— (((Yair Rosenberg))) (@Yair_Rosenberg) February 5, 2018
Me after that MLK Dodge Ram commercial pic.twitter.com/3TEVZgtvaZ
— Saladin 🇫🇷 (@KillaKam1947) February 5, 2018
Neither @TheKingCenter nor @BerniceKing is the entity that approves the use of #MLK’s words or imagery for use in merchandise, entertainment (movies, music, artwork, etc) or advertisement, including tonight’s @Dodge #SuperBowl commercial.
— The King Center (@TheKingCenter) February 5, 2018
However, the best response by far was one unknown Twitter user’s selective edit of the Dodge ad, in which they played a different excerpt of the “Drum Major’s Instinct” speech over the commercial in which Dr. King derides American capitalism and the manipulative nature of commercials — particularly car commercials.
“They have a way of saying things to you that kind of get you in a bind. In order to be a man of distinction, you must drink this whiskey. In order to make your neighbors envious, you must drive this kind of car,” King said. “And I’ve got to drive this car because it’s something about this car that makes my car a little better than my neighbor’s car. And I am sad to say that the nation in which we live is the supreme culprit. And I’m going to continue to say it to America.
Watch the epic recut below:
OMG someone overlayed that ridiculous Dodge/MLK ad with what King actually said about capitalism and car commercials pic.twitter.com/9IB528mCyt
— Astead (@AsteadWesley) February 5, 2018
Scott Alden is a freelance contributor covering national politics, education, and environmental issues. He is a proud Toledo University graduate, and lives in the suburbs of Detroit.