Cadillac has uploaded a one-minute video titled Audacity Of Blackness to its YouTube and Instagram channels. In the official words of the GM luxury brand, “This film is an expression of the glorious, resilient display of Black accomplishments born from resistance and innovation, that have changed industries, communities, culture, and the world.”
Over inspiring visuals and imposing music (both containing African elements), rapper and activist Killer Mike delivers a strong narration, which begins: “Our presence is beyond vital. Everything we do makes this land worth fighting for. It’s because of our nerve, our audacity, that this culture is so rich. This is a testament to what happens when you bet on Black.”
“To be black and audacious is to be the perfector of all circumstances, and we put that on our lives – daily,” Killer Mike concludes.
Perhaps inevitably, reaction to the video on both social media channels has been very mixed, with some commenters expressing strong support and others declaring that they will never buy a Cadillac again (if they ever did before).
There are also who wonder what any of this has to do with cars. The answer is that it has nothing to do with them at all. The video is clearly part of Cadillac’s marketing strategy, but it does not promote any particular Cadillac product.
Nor has it sprung from nowhere. Recent General Motors policy – and therefore that of Buick, Chevrolet and GMC as well as Cadillac – has been to promote racial equality. The company established an Inclusion Advisory Board last year, with CEO Mary Barra as Chair, and at the same time designated $10 million to support inclusion and racial justice. The first $1 million went to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Legal Defense and Education Fund.
“Cadillac will continue to take action because we are impatient to affect change,” the brand states on the Audacity page of its website. “This is not a symbolic gesture; this is an ongoing commitment to operate in service to the Black Community.”
Check out this part of the ongoing commitment here: