The Broncos and Seahawks weren’t the only ones butting heads during Sunday’s Super Bowl.
Coca-Cola aired a commercial entitled “It’s Beautiful,” prompting the hashtag “AmericaIsBeautiful” and sparking shocking social media responses from viewers.
The ad featured the song “America the Beautiful” sung in seven languages, including English, Tagalog, Spanish, Hebrew, Hindi, Keres and Senegalese-French. The ad showed people of different ethnicities and races participating in their daily activities and drinking Coke.
After the commercial aired, it received overwhelming criticism on Facebook and Twitter by people who believe English is the only language that should be spoken in America. Some people even threatened to boycott Coca-Cola because an “American song” was sung in a language other than English.
These negative reactions were completely uncalled for and ignorant.
According to the CIA World Factbook, the United States has no official language. While 82 percent of Americans speak English, it is not this country’s native language and many other languages are spoken by Americans every day.
The ad was well done and presented an accurate representation of what America stands for. The commercial reached the ultimate audience by relating to so many different groups of people.
Not long after criticism of the ad began, Coca-Cola executives released statements defending their commercial.
“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 us and that matter to Coca-Cola,” said Sonya Soutus, senior vice president of Public Affairs and Communications, Coca-Cola North America.
Coke made a bold statement with “It’s Beautiful.” While the subject of diversity in America is a complicated issue with many possible implications, the message of the commercial should be supported rather than criticized.
Not all of the ad’s feedback was negative. Many people praised it for serving as a reminder of America’s beauty and diversity. Some people suggested those making negative comments had reverted back to attitudes from the 1950s.
According to a release from Coca-Cola, a 90-second version of the ad will air Friday night during the broadcast of the Olympic Opening Ceremony. We can only hope it will get a better, more appropriate response this time.