Avril Lavigne Reponds to Racism Allegations: 'LOLOLOL'

Critical reception of the track has been overwhelmingly negative.

Ultimate Guitar

Avril Lavigne has responded to comments that the video for her latest single, "Hello Kitty," is racist towards the Japanese.

In a post on Facebook, Lavigne claimed that the video wasn't racist because it was shot in Japan by a Japanese director:

"RACIST? LOLOLOL! I love Japanese culture and I spend half of my time in Japan. I flew to Tokyo to shoot this video specifically for my Japanese fans, WITH my Japanese label, Japanese choreographers AND a Japanese director IN Japan."

The track, which was co-written by Lavigne and husband Chad Kroeger, is the fourth single from Lavigne's most recent, self-titled album. The song, and its video have been criticized on many fronts, with commentators taking issue to the portrayal of Japanese culture, the over-sexualization of the Hello Kitty brand, and lyrics that make fun of overweight children.

Critical reception of the track has been overwhelmingly negative.

67 comments sorted by best / new / date

    "RACIST??? LOLOLOL!!!" Yeah, what a mature way to deal with a mature issue...
    She's giving a stupid, oversensitive reaction to her song the respect it deserves; none.
    "It's not racist, some of my best friends are Japanese!"
    Well, when pretty much everyone involved with the making of the video is Japanese, it kind of isn't. What's racist, is the fact that a White singer can't adapt parts of another culture without being labeled a racist.
    I'm really curious as to how much of this outcry is from actual Japanese, and not from a suburban hyper-Liberal who's never actually experienced what racism is.
    To be fair she can only defend it against accusations of racism, not being for shit. That would be an indefensible position. Maybe she thinks it's shit too and so isn't even bothering...
    It's not racist, it's in the style of a lot of J-pop (which of course has been established not an actual representation of Japan and its people, just a stage image). The only thing about it is that the song is Friday-level bad.
    I would've given her the benefit of the doubt if she showed at least a little understanding of where people might be coming from. If the song was more the Japanese Label's idea and the video was more the Japanese director's idea, then she had a good opportunity to be forgiven with the right tone of voice. But clearly, she shows absolutely no concern for anything people are saying which tells me she doesn't see anything wrong with this widely claimed offensive song and video. If she came out and apologized for offending anyone, whether she knew what they were offended by [i]or not , it would've been completely forgivable. But apparently, those complaints of racism get a big fat "LOLOLOL" instead, while blaming the label and the director for an issue she seems to think she isn't a part of. Based on her earlier music which got her famous in the first place, I can see why a lot of her fans who grew up on that music would feel horrible about this new direction. If the rest of her new album is in the same line as "Hello Kitty" then she's practically on the way to a career ender. Personally, I still think the song and video is hilarious. It's just really bad in a way that makes me think "seriously?" over and over again. Not worth watching more than once though.
    Mud Martian
    Good opportunity to be forgiven for what? This is not to specifically defend Avril Lavigne - who I have no interest in whatsoever - but to defend a principle. It's been my observation that every single person who cries racism and "I'm offended" has double standards and a very narrow point of view. The fact is that stereotypes come into being because various cultures do have defining characteristics, and it can be funny. It's far too easy nowadays to say that you're offended, and be showered with apologies and attention. It satisfies people's egos and nothing else. "LOLOLOL" may be an immature response, but it's not totally uncalled for. If people could just laugh at themselves and each other and accept themselves, we wouldn't have half of the problems we have, like obese children whose parents think they're Olympian gods and keep shoveling McNuggets down their throat. Violent racism, racist beliefs, and racist intent are a matter of their own that should be taken seriously. I grew up white in a predominately black and latino neighborhood, and I've witnessed and received my share of serious racism. Having stones thrown at the back of my head walking to the bus stop, being threatened and called a fat honky cracker who needs to watch my back, among other unpleasant situations. Guns and knives pulled on me not least of all. Some Canadian chick's music video is nothing serious and people need to lighten up and refocus on actual problems. Still don't care for Avril Lavigne, though.
    I think the issue is that she wasn't trying to understand or properly represent their culture. I would say it was really insensitive and ignorant of her, but not racist. I agree that people should take themselves less seriously, but on the other hand as a bisexual, it gets on my nerves how often I hear "that's gay" even though it's not directed at me, because it's still insulting and latently homophobic.
    Hey. That's gay. Get over it. Saying 'that's gay' doesn't make someone a homophobe.
    I said it's latently homophobic, but if you use it a lot, you definitely are a homophobe whether you want to admit it or not. It's just like all the old white guys who say incredibly racist shit and then freak out when anyone calls them a racist for it. You're a homophobe, get over it.
    So if you say something is gay once in a while, that's fine, but if you constantly use the term, you're a homophobe? What if you actively support gay rights and are a champion for the cause of equality, but use the term? Isn't it possible that some people are just too sensitive? If it's used by someone in a non-hateful manner, I say get over it. If I say something is "so gay", I'm not thinking "That is so terrible because it is very similar to a homosexual human being, who is also terrible due to their sexuality." Maybe I'm thinking something is kind of lame, or maybe it's not even something bad, just something affeminite. In any event, I think the whole thing is ridiculous. If it's not meant to be hateful, it shouldn't be a big deal. Just like jokes about ethnic stereotypes, etc... Where's the sense of humor anymore?
    Because you're equating something that's lame with gay people. Is it that hard to understand? If you use gay as a synonym for anything you don't like, you're implying that you don't like gays. Just call it LAME FFS! Why should I laugh about it when there's nothing funny about it whatsoever? You're not even making a joke, it's pure insult.
    You are what's wrong with the country. Oversensitive losers. Grow up
    What a mature, intelligent response.
    You are not mature enough to make a distinction between a word and someone's actual feelings. People like you put so much stake in words without any thought into the person saying them. I can understand getting upset or being sensitive to a person's hateful feelings or prejudiced beliefs, but not to actual words. It's ridiculous. "Don't use that word, it's hurtful even if you don't mean it to be." That statement makes no sense. The point of words are the feelings behind them. When so-called hurtful words are used with no intention to hurt, the onus lies on the "offended" person to lighten up and get over it, not on the person using the word to apologize for something they weren't even implying.
    How do you think that argument would fly with the N word? You wouldn't even have the balls to make it because you'd get a black eye. "Oh, I wasn't using it in a hateful way" yeah f*cking right. You are obviously beyond reason so I'm done here.
    Same argument for any word, dummy. It's the feelings behind a word, not you making a sound with your mouth that matters. Listen to Doug Stanhope, perfect explanation. You're a loser. Just pathetic. I feel sorry for people that have to have you in their lives.
    That's a nice anecdote, but what's your point? Other than appealing to emotion (which is a logical fallacy btw) and generalizing to an extreme degree, you haven't really given me anything to reply to in that long response.
    why did you reply then?
    'Cause he wrote a pretty long post in response to mine that seemed only half-directed towards me. Personally I disagree with nearly everything he said, but I didn't feel like explaining why since he stopped addressing me 3/4ths of the way through. If it was its own post I would've ignored it, but it was a reply to mine so I had to ask.
    Mud Martian
    The point of my reply was to express my opposing viewpoint, and bring to light what I see as the self-centered nature of the "offended" compared to serious issues of racism and/or prejudice throughout the world. If all you have to say in reply is that you have nothing to say, that's quite alright, but it's through no fault of my own. Although I will say that there's nothing fallacious about appealing to emotion in a matter that is entirely based on emotions. After all, we're talking about people being upset over a pop star's music video, which I'm sure was made in the spirit of fun. Even if it does suck.
    The amount of effort put into talking about this song looks exhausting
    In that case, here's my post in a nutshell After hearing the song: OMG, this is so hilarious! After reading this article: Wait... oh no... ... she was being serious.
    Her comment is as mature and well phrased as her lyrics... and her music in general.
    who cares shes just trying to get the spotlight. the only way to get the spotlight is to be controversial.
    "The track, which was co-written by Lavigne and husband Chad Kroeger". Wow, just when we thought Nickleback were bad enough.
    Something leads me to assume that if you asked a Japanese-American who lived in the internment camps what they think racism is, and if this compared to it, you would get a rather incredulous response. The word racism doesn't mean anything anymore because it's been stomped into the ground by the horde of over-sensitive self-loathing white people who always use it.
    Culturally appropiative and racist, plus it's shitty, but why the **** you give more importance to the fact that it's a shitty video, than to the fact that it's ****ing racist
    29 year old releases a video that's age appropriate for an impressionable tween popstar...and nobody's raised that point yet....desu~
    I wouldn't call it racist just horribly stereotyped, I'd assume that someone that spends half their time in japan would have something more to say about it than "Hello Kitty, you're so pretty"
    Video just seemed like more of a stab at j-pop and weeb type videos and specific culture. Not entirely devoid of offensiveness, but I wouldn't consider it as strong as the reception made me believe before seeing it. The real offensive part is just how awful the video is.
    Erm, it just sounds like she is doing a Keisha song. To be honest the songs just plain bad.