Tuesday, February 4, 2014

America the Beautiful?




I am quite aware that the following will be a unpopular opinion, but that's the beauty of my blog. I can write what I want, and if you decide you don't like what I have to say you can just stop reading.

Dear Coca-Cola, 
I really wasn't paying attention too much at the super bowl, seeing as I spent my time chasing around a quite active almost two year old little girl. Like literally, couldn't tell you anything memorable that happened on the big screen... ok, wait I remember the weird pistachio commercial, but that's it. 
So I start seeing all these Facebook and Twitter posts about Coca-Cola's America the Beautiful ad and how disgraceful it was, and how that song should only be sung in English... So I decided to check it out. 
Are you kidding me? Of all the evil in the world, people felt the need to take to social media to debate a commercial? (one that I found quite beautiful by the way) They were so irate and appalled that you would play such an offensive thing on television. 
I don't believe that these people even understand what America is. They have probably never heard of the melting pot, or the more politically correct term, the tossed salad. 
I understand that people from other countries will be required to somewhat assimilate to our way of doing things. But is it impossible for those people to continue to have pride and history and tradition and still be american? Not according to some in my news feed. 
Ethnocentrism is the belief in superiority of one's own ethnic group. 
And in my opinion, anyone who was internally or externally upset by that commercial has some ethnocentric issues that they need to deal with.
After all, isn't that what World War II was all about?
America was anything but beautiful last night. America was hateful and rude and ignorant and conceited. 
And I don't believe that you at Coca-Cola were trying to make some political statement, but simply show ways that we are all connected... like being American citizens, regardless of what country we were born in, or simply how many of us enjoy Coke. 
Shame on anyone for reading so much into a commercial that they felt the need to be upset by it. Get upset about murder and world hunger and war for crying out loud! 
And yes, I believe that people who come to America should learn English... but does that mean they need to forget who they are and where they come from?
So kudos Coca-cola, for realizing that we are all created by God. And that America can be a beautiful place, when we stop being overcome with prejudice, and begin to learn that we are all connected. 
I think I will go buy a Coke!
Respectfully, 
Paige Starks



5 comments:

  1. Well I am headed to the store to buy a 24-pack of Diet Coke :) Well said Paige! My favorite quote of the day... "Get upset about murder and world hunger and war for crying out loud!". We need to get off our high horses (aka Facebook) and worry about things that are really important and might actually do some good in someone else's life.

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  2. Love your reply Monica! I think I should probably get diet as well! LOL

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  3. Page, as politely and as gently as I possibly can..... For me and many others, America the beautiful is not a song, It a description of the gift of freedom that was paid for with blood. For me, National Pride is less about how good I have it or how awesome America is, and more about the gift of freedom I received from someone that died defending it. For many in our generation, freedom is the last gift they received from their son, brother, father, or even mom. So, when I hear America The beautiful sung in a language different than english, I can't help but think its taking something very personal and sacred, only to have it given to someone who does not understand.... this is why I do not like the commercial, and why so many were upset by it.

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    Replies
    1. I disagree with you Anonymous person... If the people in our nation are only fighting for the English speaking, then they have their values all wrong. And you think people who have come here from other countries don't understand the gift of freedom, or that people have died so that they could have it? I think people who migrate here from places around the world would understand more about war, and poverty and freedom than many who have lived in our American bubbles could ever dream. You seem to be implying that someone who was not born in America could not understand that gift. But I would venture to guess that the majority of the children singing in the commercial were born in America, but have parents who want them to know about a their ancestors and history and heritage. Didn't our soldiers die for their rights as well? Didn't they die so we could experience freedom to be who we are... to be proud American's, no matter our first language? It's not us and them... And I understand that I will never convince you of that, but again, as I stated at the top of this blog, if you don't like what I have to say, you have the freedom to click the X in the upper right hand corner. Just as you have the freedom to be offended by a commercial, just as I have the freedom to be deeply sadden by your offense, just as these children have the right to sing any american song in any language the wish. Language is also a very personal and sacred thing... it is who they are... but implying that these people don't understand freedom or the price that has been paid seems condescending in my opinion. Thank you for your response.

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  4. This was Coca-Cola's response to my letter:

    Thank you for your email and your loyalty to Coca-Cola over the years, . We greatly value your business and appreciate hearing from you.

    “It’s Beautiful” was created to celebrate Coke moments among all Americans who together enjoy ice cold, refreshing Coke. For centuries America has opened its arms to people of many countries who have helped to build this great nation. “It’s Beautiful” provides a snapshot of the real lives of Americans representing diverse ethnicities, religions, races and families, all found in the United States. All those featured in the ad are Americans and “America The Beautiful” was sung by bilingual American young women.

    We believe “It’s Beautiful” is a great example of the magic that makes our country so special, and a powerful message that spreads optimism, promotes inclusion and celebrates humanity – values that are core to Coca-Cola.

    You can find out more about our ad by going to Journey. I really appreciate your feedback and hope this will keep you as a valued customer of ours. We appreciate your interest in our Company.

    Timothy
    Industry and Consumer Affairs
    The Coca-Cola Company

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