Bobby Brown says New Edition coined the ‘Just Say No’ slogan of the ’80s

Former First Lady Nancy Reagan’s popular anti-drug campaign was reportedly inspired by the legendary R&B group

When people think of the “Just Say No” anti-drug slogan, they typically think of former first lady, Nancy Reagan. According to the group's sometimes lead singer and the original King of R&B, Bobby Brown, New Edition came up with the term first.

Bobby Brown
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 01: Singer Bobby Brown attends The "Bobby-Q" Atlanta Premiere Of "The Bobby Brown Story" at Atlanta Contemporary Arts Center on September 1, 2018 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for BET)

When people think of the “Just Say No” anti-drug slogan, they typically think of former first lady, Nancy Reagan. However, people should think about a little quintet from Boston that rose to fame in the early 1980s. According to the group’s sometimes lead singer and the original King of R&B, Bobby Brown, they came up with the term first.

Come again?

“She got that from me. She got that from New Edition,” Brown said to comedian, D.L. Hughley in an interview on The D.L. Hughley Show.

READ MORE: Internal Revenue to New Edition member: Cool It Now!

Brown said he and other group members unknowingly gave Reagan the idea when she asked them “what do we say when we’re offered drugs?” Brown said. “We were young, we was 15, 14-years-old, and we just said, ‘We just say no.’ The campaign just flew from there. The ‘Just Say No’ campaign. We didn’t get no credit.”

Hughley told Bobby he knows why he didn’t get writing cred with the campaign: “Because you didn’t say no, Bobby,” he said and Brown and others in the room laughed. “I say no now,” Brown shot back.

Brown, who was married to pop princess, Whitney Houston, publicly struggled with drug addiction for much of his adult life until a brief stint in prison in 2013 prompted him to face reality and get clean.

READ MORE: New Edition, missing two members, heads back out on tour with a surprising new name

Brown told The Dr. Oz Show that the experience altered his life trajectory.

“I didn’t want my kids to grow up and see me in that type of light,” Brown told Dr. Oz, according to Complex. “I mean, my children mean everything to me, everything. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them. So I try to be as strong as possible for them every day. And it takes every day for me to do that.”

This story is so wild it has to be the truth. We always knew New Edition was magical. And we’ve become privy to first ladies who steal borrow slogans… hmmm, now where have we seen this before?

SHARE THIS ARTICLE