Pete Hoekstra's Super Bowl Ad is a Super Flop

Feb 06, 2012, 15:35 ET from Detroit Branch NAACP

DETROIT, Feb. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Rev. Dr. Wendell Anthony, President of the Detroit Branch NAACP issued the following statement today concerning the ad of Pete Hoekstra during the recent Super Bowl.

When will politicians learn that you don't have to go low in order to rise high?  The recent ad by former Representative Pete Hoekstra seeking to replace Senator Debbie Stabenow as Michigan's newest Senator is a clear demonstration of playing an unnecessary race card and using inflammatory stereotypes to pursue a political advantage.

The last thing that our political landscape needs is more vitriolic rhetoric, racial stereotyping and pitting one group of Americans against another. The  use of an Asian woman speaking broken English in a rice paddy on a bicycle  to describe how bad our economy and political leadership is while referring to Senator Debbie Stabenow as Senator Debbie "SPEND-IT-NOW" is disrespectful and racially charged.   

It plays on the base feelings of those who view minorities and in particular persons of color as the major economic problem.  This is ill-conceived and does very little to motivate the citizenry to get involved with the political process.  Quite frankly the individuals who are doing business with the United States and providing loans to our nation are not riding bicycles in a rice paddy.  They are sitting in the halls of government in Beijing, as well as in the suites of the rapidly growing corporate entities of China and America. 

We have no problem with Mr. Hoekstra or anyone being critical of the policies of political leaders.  This is not a Republican or a Democratic issue.  Policies and programs are fair game.  Yet when one reduces that to racial stereotypes and belittling the ethnicity of a particular group, it goes beyond the level of political correctness.  Even some in the Republican Party agree that Mr. Hoekstra has crossed the line.  We believe there is a much better way to draw attention to your political campaign other than the use of racial stereotypes.

The words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. must still be articulated in our public discourse.  "We must not judge each other by the color of our skin but by the content of our character."  Mr. Hoekstra owes the Asian community an apology.  As to your campaign, Mr. Hoekstra, please,


The Detroit Branch NAACP is the organization's largest branch.  For more information on the Detroit Branch NAACP please call (313) 871-2087 or visit

SOURCE Detroit Branch NAACP