NBC, Fox and Facebook have all pulled an ad made by President Donald Trump's campaign, which targeted immigrants from Central and South America.
The ad addresses the "migrant caravan" that President Trump and other Republicans have been focusing on in recent weeks. It equates the group of mostly impoverished families walking toward the U.S. with convicted murderer Luis Bracamontes, who entered the country without documentation and later killed two police officers.
For most major outlets, the ad was too racist and inflammatory to keep on the air. NBC aired it during Sunday Night Football before hurriedly taking it out of circulation. Likewise, Facebook, CNN and even Fox News determined that the ad went too far.
“After further review, we recognize the insensitive nature of the ad and have decided to cease airing it across our properties as soon as possible,” an NBC spokesperson wrote in a statement to Entertainment Weekly.
On Saturday, CNN announced that it would not play the ad at all. Donald Trump Jr. took to Twitter in triumph, relating this to the Trump administration's ongoing war of words with the press in general.
CNN has made it abundantly clear in its editorial coverage that this ad is racist. When presented with an opportunity to be paid to take a version of this ad, we declined. Those are the facts. 🍎— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) November 3, 2018
"CNN refused to run this ad... I guess they only run fake news and won’t talk about real threats that don’t suit their agenda," he wrote. "Enjoy. Remember this on Tuesday."
CNN responded, decrying the ad in no uncertain terms.
"CNN has made it abundantly clear in its editorial coverage that this ad is racist," the tweet read. "When presented with an opportunity to be paid to take a version of this ad, we declined. Those are the facts."
The president himself did not seem interested in discussing the backlash to the ad. On Monday, reporters from Independent asked him about the video. He feigned ignorance, despite having posted it to his personal Twitter just days before.
“I don’t know about it,” he said. “We have a lot of ads. And they certainly are effective, based on the numbers that we’re seeing.”
A reporter asked for a response to the outrage, noting that many people had been offended by the ad.
“A lot of things are offensive," the president said. "Your questions are offensive a lot of times so, you know.”
While the various networks' refusal to play the ad is a surprisingly strong stance, some are still infuriated with NBC for playing it during Sunday Night Football. This came after CNN's refusal, and some loud voices on social media questioned why they would play it once after knowing its contents.
“So @nbc and @Comcast aired that racist Trump caravan commercial during the football game,” tweeted Judd Apatow. “Who made that decision? How did they decide it was ok? I am disgusted that you would air that after @cnn refused to air it because it is explicitly racist. Shame on you. @NBCNews.”
To our @willandgrace fans—I want you to know that I am ashamed that my network aired this disgusting racist ad. It is the antithesis of everything I personally believe in, and what, I believe, our show is all about. @nbc pic.twitter.com/CLinZKHB47— Debra Messing (@DebraMessing) November 5, 2018
"To our @willandgrace fans — I want you to know that I am ashamed that my network aired this disgusting racist ad," added Debra Messing. "It is the antithesis of everything I personally believe in, and what, I believe, our show is all about. @nbc."