WAFF: Concerned parents said that the lyrics in a song included with a kids' meal has an offensive word that's left a bad taste in their mouths.
McDonald's has several Kidz Bop CD's that they've handed out in their Happy Meals. On Monday afternoon, one grandmother took her two grandchildren to a Boaz McDonald's for lunch. But what was inside their bags left her anything but happy.
"It's got a phrase in it that I don't think's appropriate for children," she said.
The Kidz Bop CD No. 6, song 1 is a cover of the song "I Don't Wanna Be," originally by Gavin DeGraw. The parents said the word in question appears about 52 seconds in, during the chorus.
"In the song the word is supposed to be looking, but they're saying the f-word with the -ing on the end," said one parent.
When asked if she was concerned about the song being a bad influence, the grandmother said, "If my little grandson is going to go to school and sing it, it's going to be terrible because if they listen to the CD, they can hear what we hear."
It says on the CD that it's sung by kids, for kids. But some parents tended to disagree.
"I have a 5-year-old and that's the last thing I need is for him to go off to school and say that word," one parent said.
Concerned parents said they have a message for other parents.
"Definitely double-check everything before giving to your kids," one said.
A McDonald's manager in Boaz said they're no longer distributing that particular CD in its Happy Meals after several complaints from parents.
But in a written statement, McDonald's spokeswoman Danya Proud said: "Kidz Bop carefully chooses the songs featured on all Kidz Bop CDs, including those songs in the current Happy Meal, to ensure both the subject matter and lyrics are appropriate for our youngest guests. McDonald's further ensures the song selections are consistent with the stringent standards that we attribute to all of our Happy Meal toy offerings."
"We greatly value the high standards that families hold us to, and we would never include a lyric, word, or song that is inappropriate to children of any age. As with any offering, parents will need to make the final determination about what is appropriate for their family," Proud said.
Several members of WAFF 48 News' staff listened to the song and agreed it did sound objectionable.
McDonald's USA and Kidz Bo, LLC disagree with profanity being included in the song. They issued the following statement late Wednesday afternoon:
"Kidz Bop is a leading national children's brand that delights families and kids with appropriate versions of popular songs. An inaccurate claim has been made regarding lyrics in the song, 'I Don't Want to Be,' included on Kidz Bop CD number six from the current McDonald's Happy Meal promotion. This song contains the original lyric, 'I'm tired of looking 'round rooms,' and does not contain profanity, as some have suggested. The CDs will continue to be available at McDonald's restaurants as part of this Happy Meal promotion, while supplies last."
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