Rap star Lil Wayne has been dropped as a spokesman by PepsiCo‘s (NYSE:PEP) Mountain Dew.
The soda — which often uses extreme or edgy spokesmen — decided the rapper’s lyrics about Emmett Till were too insensitive, MTV reports.
The controversy concerns how Lil Wayne described beating up a rival “like Emmett Till,” referring to the 1955 murder of a 15-year-old black Chicago boy. Till was accused of flirting with a white woman while visiting family in Mississippi. Later that night, a group of men abducted Till, beat him and threw him in a local river to drown.
While the version with the offensive lyrics was leaked in February — and was possibly not intended for release — Pepsi announced last week that that Lil Wayne’s “offensive reference to a revered civil rights icon does not reflect the values of our brand.”
It’s the second time recently that Mountain Dew has seen trouble from its sponsors. Last week, an ad put together by Tyler, The Creator was pulled for implying that only black men get arrested.