Controversy erupts on social media over beer advertisement

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FLINT, Mich. — An advertisement caused an eruption of controversy on social media.

It was hanging inside of a popular downtown Flint restaurant and caught the eye of an ABC12 News viewer. She posted it on social media, and the response has forced the restaurant to react.

The controversial sign was hanging up at the 501 Grill in downtown Flint.

It’s an old advertisement for a Michigan beer called “Hangin’ Frank” and shows a man hanging from what could be a noose.

“With me being a black woman and knowing my history, I find it offensive,” said Cherisse Bradley.

Bradley is a regular at 501 Grill in downtown Flint. This week, she got a bad taste in her mouth when she noticed the painting hanging above her table.

“I was immediately offended. I’m not sure whose decision that was to put up the advertisement,” Bradley said.

It’s an ad for a Michigan beer made by Short’s Brewing Company.

According to Short’s, “Hangin’ Frank” was inspired by a story of folklore.

As legend has it, the former Caucasian owner of Petoskey Bar and Grill in Petoskey hanged himself years ago and now haunts the place.

Bradley posted the photo on social media and got a lot of response.

Back in 2011, Short’s re-branded the beer. It’s called ControversiALE – an ode to the uproar “Hangin’ Frank” caused.

501 Grill never took the sign down.

“It’s an offensive picture that should of never gone up,” Bradley said.

501 Grill responded quickly to the social media outrage and took the sign down.

“I probably will go back because they took it down,” Bradley said.

Source: WJRT

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