Burger King agreed Tuesday to pull a radio
commercial featuring a character with a Muslim name promoting the
fast-food chain's bacon-cheddar sandwich after receiving
complaints, an Islamic advocacy group said.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations said Tuesday it was
contacted by six American Muslims over the weekend who complained
about the advertisements.
"They were offended that someone with a Muslim name would be
praising a sandwich that contains pork," said Ibrahim Hooper, a
spokesman for Washington-based CAIR. Islam prohibits the
consumption of pork products.
The council sent a letter to Burger King on Monday asking that
the commercial be withdrawn. The company responded Tuesday by
agreeing to take the ad off the air, Hooper said.
Messages left after business hours at Burger King's headquarters
were not immediately returned Tuesday.
A letter from Burger King spokesman Robert Doughty to the
council, excerpts of which were provided by the group, stated that
the ads were "not meant to refer to any religion."
"We are making these changes so there is no confusion,"
Burger King officials will withdraw the commercial and rewrite
it to delete the references that Muslims found objectionable,
according to the council.
In the ads, a character using the Muslim name "Rasheed" reads
a poem listing the virtues of Burger King's bacon-cheddar Whopper
The character also greets others with "peace" and is
introduced to "brothers and sisters" in a coffee house. Muslims
greet each other by saying "peace to you" in Arabic and refer to
each other as "brothers" and "sisters."
"That crossed the line," Hooper said.