During tonight’s laughably one-sided Superbowl Coca-Cola aired a commercial in which English (and non-English) speaking Americans sang America the Beautiful. Shortly after social media outlets lit up with enraged individuals scoffing at the notion that it could be sung in any language other than that in which it was penned.
The mission of this commercial was, in fact, to show the very thing that the Superbowl exemplifies; togetherness. Regardless of whether or not football is your thing (it’s not mine), there’s no arguing that Americans of every distinction – be they cultural, moral, racial, or political, were huddled in front of their television sets tonight.
Some sat with friends. Some watched with family. Some were isolated – too invested in the game for company. Either way, sports are supposed to extend the spirit of unity and teamwork, shepherding people away from the legitimately divisive, and replacing it with a less harmful sense of division; that of competition, where logos, mascots, gamesmanship, and bragging rights are the only terms at stake.
And then there’s Todd Starnes – who heard the commercial and took to Twitter with the following:
He continued afterwards, complaining about Americans who don’t know English, and accused Coke of celebrating that, to which I say, Todd Starnes is an idiot.
While these views are absolutely my own and not at all reflective of We Are Libertarians as an organization (Though I’d like to think they would support me on this), I just don’t understand Todd’s beef here. His focus (oddly) fixed itself on immigration issues. He built a soapbox in a place where nobody was discussing politics, and sounded off – offended at the idea that not all Americans speak English. He then lunged at the opportunity to unsheathe his political sword in the form of socially conservative Tweets that made him sound like little more than a candidate for Rick Santorum’s fantasy presidential cabinet.
But I would remind Mr. Starnes that every one of the singers in the Coca-Cola spot had an ice cold beverage in their hand, and what’s more American than capitalism; a language that we can (hopefully) all understand? That’s good enough for me.
For those who haven’t seen it, here is the Coca-Cola advertisement: