Pepsi pulls Kendall Jenner protest advert after social media backlash

Pepsi pulls Kendall Jenner protest advert after social media backlash

Pepsi has pulled an advert after it was criticised for appearing to trivialise protests for social justice causes.

The advert, featuring Kendall Jenner, shows people at a rally carrying signs saying "peace" and "join the conversation".

Jenner, 21, is seen modelling a dress but, after making eye contact with a protester, she rips off her wig and joins the march.

The model then walks up to a police officer to hand him a Pepsi - which he drinks as the crowd cheers.

Pepsi has removed the advert online, after critics accused the drinks firm of exploiting protest movements like BlackLivesMatter and opposition to Donald Trump to sell drinks.

A spokesperson said the video was an attempt to "project a global message of unity, peace and understanding" but "clearly we missed the mark".

They added: "We did not intend to make light of any serious issue.

"We are removing the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologise for putting Kendall Jenner in this position."

Many pointed out that the sight of Jenner approaching police officers echoed a widely-circulated image of Ieshia Evans, who stood still in front of police officers during a rally in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in July last year.

Ms Evans, a nurse, was arrested for obstructing a highway.

Other Twitter users sarcastically congratulated Jenner for ending tensions between police and protesters with just a can of soft drink.

One wrote: "Kendall Jenner hands cop a Pepsi. Cop: I'm not racist anymore."

Another said: "How nice of Kendall Jenner to stop in the middle of her photo shoot to end social injustices by giving that cop a Pepsi. MLK who? Rosa who?"

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