Why is Kool-Aid racist?

Kool-Aid is brand of instant juice drink that is popular in the US and some other countries around the world. Aside from its various flavors, the drink has become associated with racism. Many people casually refer to black people as “Kool-Aid” drinkers and this has led some people to wonder why this is so.

For most experts on the subject, equating Kool-Aid with racism against blacks actually rooted from a mass suicide incident in Guyana, South America orchestrated by cult leader Jim Jones back in 1978. At the time, Jones was said to have convinced his followers to commit suicide by drinking poisoned Kool-Aid juices. Many of Jones’ followers in Guyana were dark-skinned and apparently some people made the connection to drinking Kool-Aid with their skin color. Many people also cannot imagine how people were lured into committing suicide and this event in history also associated Kool-Aid drinking with people who follow directions from a supposed leader and without any question or resistance.

With the horrific incident in Guyana, drinking Kool-Aid has become synonymous with people who had a “low-life” and eventually some people associated it with American blacks who lived their lives as slaves. Whenever Kool-Aid is mentioned in a sentence, many black people would take offense on it and label it as some kind of racism. For these black people, associating them with Kool-Aid drinking is similar to what happened in Guyana and that it demeans them in a way that they would feel slighted and criticized for their color. The idea of Kool-Aid being racist has also expanded to current US President Obama because many would label his supporters and followers as Kool-Aid drinkers and this refers to their tendency to support their president without any question. There are also a lot of people who actually do not think Kool-Aid is racist and that stories relating to it are just blown out of proportion.

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