Depict Country As Giraffe After World Cup Match
Football fans, have descended heavily on US airline, Delta Airline, after it depicted Ghana with a photo of a giraffe attracting worldwide condemnations. Some of the bashing, had come from Ghana and faraway Australia.
Condemnation of the tweet was fast and furious, as Twitter users erupted, calling the uninformed message racist and ignorant.
Delta Airlines, was said to be flying blind, when it comes to geography, because the long-necked animals do not live in Ghana.
The airline tweeted the photo, after the United State of America (USA) beat Ghana 2-1 in the second Group G game on Monday at the ongoing 2014 World Cup in Natal’s Estadio Das Dunas stadium in Brazil.
Delta Airlines, which has offices here in Ghana and flies passengers into the country on daily basis, tweeted the photo of a giraffe to depict Ghana, while they used a photo of the Statue of Liberty to depict the USA.
The Sydney Morning Herald’s reporter Michael Koziol wrote that “If you’re lucky,” Delta Airlines entices travellers on its Ghana destination page, “you might even find yourself in the company of monkeys and rare birds”.
But not, in all likelihood, giraffes. Delta learnt that lesson the hard way, when it posted a tweet celebrating the US’s 2-1 win over Ghana at the World Cup.
Visually representing the US with the Statue of Liberty is standard fare. But choosing a giraffe to symbolise the West African country of Ghana, raised the eyebrows above more discerning eyes.
The photo selection was problematic, because giraffes don’t actually live in Ghana. They are typically found further east, between Chad and South Africa, although some species were known to live in parts of Nigeria. While there is no guarantee that no giraffe has ever entered Ghana, even a travel website promoting the country admits: they don’t live there.
The post set off a flurry of condemnation from people who saw the Delta tweet as an insidious form of racism.
Whilst, some Twitter commenters promised to never fly the airline again, others felt critics were being too sensitive.
“I hope you realise saying things are racist, when they are not is not helpful to those who are actually victims of racism,” one user posted.
But for Adelaide-based football writer, Andy Cussen, the ‘giraffe-gate’ demonstrated classic ignorance.
“It’s racial stereotyping, which is a form of racism. Sorry if people are offended by people being offended,” he wrote.
Delta Airlines, later deleted and apologised for its “precious tweet”, before deleting that apologising instead for its “previous tweet”. All things considered: a day its social media manager will try to forget.
The incident, comes only two months after rival airline US Airways, caused a storm when it accidentally tweeted a graphic photo of a woman inserting a model plane into her vagina.
The picture, did not go down well with some Ghanaian fans too, who were still grappling with the painful defeat.
Joy FM’s Ernest Dela Aglanu reports that; A fan responded: “This is the boolsheet us Africans gotta deal with. There are no giraffe in Ghana, you narrow-minded nincompoops! @Delta FAIL!”
Another also tweeted: “You can book flights to Accra, the capital of Ghana, on @delta’s website. Do not take those flights. They will end up in the Serengati”
“.@delta Ghana’s really more well known for their Clymene Dolphins than giraffes, but that’s just me checking Wikipedia for three seconds,” a third fan said. “Delta currently airlifting a giraffe into Ghana”.
After the hash responses, the airline quickly, deleted the photo a rendered an apology to the peeved fans.
“We’re sorry for our choice of photo in our previous tweet. Best of luck to all teams,” Delta tweeted.
The London Daily Mail and the New York Daily News, have also reported about the incident.
The Statue of Liberty National Monument built over 120 years ago. The people of France gave the Statue to the people of the United States over one hundred years ago in recognition of the friendship, established during the American Revolution. Over the years, the Statue of Liberty’s symbolism has grown to include freedom and democracy as well as this international friendship.
Sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi, was commissioned to design a sculpture with the year 1876 in mind for completion, to commemorate the centennial of the American Declaration of Independence.
The Statue was a joint effort between America and France and it was agreed upon that the American people were to build the pedestal, and the French people, were responsible for the Statue and its assembly here in the United States.