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VW's Super Bowl ad accused of being racist

Max Page starred in this Volkswagen commercial that

Max Page starred in this Volkswagen commercial that aired during Super Bowl XLVI in February. Credit: Volkswagen

Volkswagen has had some of the most memorable advertising in recent Super Bowl history — Darth Vader, kid, remember? -- but rare is the ad that is actually memorable before it appears in the game.

This brings us to das auto's “Get In. Be Happy” which has generated a bit of flak for use of a Jamaican voice for a white actor (from Minnesota, no less). It's got half a million views on YouTube already and if you click below, that'll be half a million and one.

But here's the thing: Is it racist? Obviously, it's playing with the idea behind the old Bobby McFerrin song “Don't Worry, Be Happy” song. Bobby, I believe, is from NYC, not Jamaica. But goes a step further. Critics might say it reinforces stereotypes.  In fact, critics have, including Charles Blow, in the New  York Times. Supporters might say: Don't worry, be happy, no big deal. What think you?

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