Year after year brand leading companies always pay big bucks to have their advertisement played during the NFL Superbowl and this year Coca-Cola displayed an ad where numerous American citizens sang America the Beautiful in different languages, such as Spanish, Korean, and English, while displaying the vast landscapes America has to offer. This was clearly meant to celebrate and appreciate the diversity that makes this country so unique and great by providing snapshots of the real lives of the diverse ethnicities, religions, and races that make up the citizens of the United States. Katie Bayne, the president of North America Brands of Coca-Cola North America commented on the ad saying, “We hope the ad gets people talking and thinking about what it means to be proud to be American”. Little did she know this ad we absolutely get people talking but it probably was not what she had in mind.
Immediately after this commercial aired, thousands of bigoted Americans took to the internet posting xenophobic comments like there wasn’t even in an American in that commercial or you have to be a white Christian to be American; particularly on Twitter because the ad ends with the hashtag “America is Beautiful”. They bashed Coca-Cola, calling them communist and pro-terrorists. So what did Coca-Cola accomplish with this ad? They proved that there are thousands of ignorant Americans and sparked a highly controversial debate: what does it mean to be an American.
What Makes an American?
How does one define an American? Does one have to be white? Speak English? Be born in America? There is no definite answer as America itself is a land of diversity and immigrants. Everyone in America at some point in time whether it was twenty years ago or two hundred years ago has had family that came here from another country. So what gives a person whose family has been here four generations to call themselves more American than a person whose family has been here for only one generation?
So personally I thought this was a fantastic ad as it was thought provoking, intellectually stimulating, and get people talking about Coke. Coca-Cola redefined what people thought America was in a good way by exposing the true diversity of our country. Honestly when people talk about America there are usually a few things that come to mind: Baseball, Apple Pie, and now Coca-Cola.