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Coca Cola Super Bowl Ad Leads To Social Media Outrage

Coca Cola angered a lot of people on social media with its “America the Beautiful” Super Bowl commercial. The ad showed people from all over the world living in America and singing the iconic patriotic song in different languages. The ad also showed people of every race, religion, and sexual orientation all happily drinking sugar water and loving the U.S.A. You wouldn’t think that this sweet sentiment would make people angry. But this is social media we’re talking about, the idiot’s soapbox. Thousands of irate racists took to their phones and laptops to tweet their ignorance a 140 characters a time. The tweets generally went something like this: “This is America! We speak American here #cokeiscommunist”, “Coca Cola Has non-Christians in the ad so they are supporting terrorism”, “Being gay is unAmerican, yo. Speak English you gay Illegals”, etc. That last statement is particularly ironic as America the Beautiful was written by a lesbian named Katharine Lee Bates.

But what is it about this commercial that set so many people off? Isn’t the whole point of America that people can come here from all over the world and become part of our great country? The words on the Statue of Liberty don’t say, “You can come in but only if you speak English, are a Christian, and straight.” Humans are threatened by what they don’t understand and this causes them to lash out. There are certain sectors of the country that are afraid that their cultural and political hegemony is slipping. I’ve heard people talk about the White, Christian, heterosexual man as an oppressed minority. I’m sure a lot of them do feel this way. For so long they were the only ones that mattered, the only images you saw on TV. If you saw minority groups it was as criminals, servants, or bad guys. Representation is a powerful tool for social change and it’s going to take some people a while to get used to seeing someone who doesn’t look like them shilling soda pop.

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