General Question

pleiades's avatar

What were your thoughts on the Coca~Cola commercial with the U.S. anthem being sung in multi-languages?

Asked by pleiades (6571points) February 3rd, 2014

It’s so easy to hate those that hated this commercial because of the premise, but I’m going to try and spin this a different route…

I want to know, why are these young children and citizens overall so filled with hate?

What are they being taught in whatever environment they’re being raised in that makes them hate so much? How is that culture still accepting of their ways?

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57 Answers

gary4books's avatar

I wondered how many languages I could follow or even identify. It was nice to know we are a nation of many voices.

hearkat's avatar

As for your question title;
I was in the kitchen, so I heard it but didn’t see it. As soon as I realized they were singing in different languages, I said, “There’s going to be backlash from the people who feel Americans should only speak American English.” Personally, I always liked the “I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony” ads they did when I was a kid, so I liked the idea behind this, too.

As for the sub-questions in your details;
I don’t have an answer. One of my parents was from a pre-revolutionary family, and the other has lived here more than 50 years with a green card. I see the USA as a melting pot. I enjoy interacting with people from other cultures.

I don’t comprehend why people are not more aware of the fact that we are all citizens of earth, sharing one planet. The differences people use to divide us are insignificant compared to the similarity pies of humanity. I am glad to see some corporations use their position of influence to spread messages of peace and tolerance.

elbanditoroso's avatar

I thought it was pretty cool. I lost count of how many languages it was.

Kudos for Coke. Courageous.

zenvelo's avatar

It wasn’t the National Anthem!

It was America the Beautiful, and the languages highlighted the beauty of the song dedicated to America’s diversity.

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glacial's avatar

The backlash pretty much confirms the American xenophobic stereotype. So… good job?

filmfann's avatar

The commercial was fine, and the hate speak was from the small but loud minority of xenophobe idiots.

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VS's avatar

It reminded me a lot of the Coke commercials featuring the ‘i want to teach the world to sing’ from a few decades ago. Very inclusive, and god knows the world needs some more of that!

SwanSwanHummingbird's avatar

The puppy commercial was better.

Good for Coke. The backlash just confirms how stupid Americans are.

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SwanSwanHummingbird's avatar

Okay, some Americans. Is that better? Technically, I called myself stupid in my first post. Haha.

SweetMae's avatar

America is a diverse populace.

Kraigmo's avatar

I don’t like football or commercials.

But the type of people to complain about the loss of White English America…. I find repulsive.

ETpro's avatar

Children aren’t born to hate, they are taught to hate. America is a diverse nation. I loved the commercial and salute Coca Cola for having the guts to produce it. I still won’t drink soda pop regularly, but on the rare occasion when I do I might choose Coke instead of my default Pepsi.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I especially liked this comment

“That coke commerical sucked. Mexicans. terrorists, jews, and niggers are not “American” ”

Shame that person probably doesn’t realize that God Bless America was written by a Jewish immigrant.

I also enjoyed how many people were pissed because we speak american in this great country – _ – and also had absolutely no command of the English language.

gambitking's avatar

when it first started playing I rolled my eyes. I guess too many years wearing a marketing hat has jaded me to stuff like this.

in my eyes, it was like any other coke commercial, but they slathered on a hefty helping of heart-tug jelly to congeal a message of diversity with patriotism to sell a soft drink.

Of course my opinion has nothing to do with controversy, anti-Americanism, etc. But, meh, it’s nothing new anyway and if it touched a nerve with xenophobes they obviously weren’t around in 1971 – and back then Coke didn’t need to use America the Beautiful, they were busy creating their own gem

El_Cadejo's avatar

@gambitking Oh I agree completely I saw it as a stupid bullshit marketing ploy but still nothing to be all up in arms about.

Blackberry's avatar

I don’t care. This is just the daily, “Something to to be offended at because my first-world lifestyle doesn’t give me enough to do.”

ragingloli's avatar

It is a dreadful “song” in the first place. Singing it in other languages does not make it better.

JLeslie's avatar

I loved the commercial. I loved the message that America is a diverse place. I loved seeing all the different people, how they look, how they dress. I was raised by a cocaholic and was one until my 30’s. I have a special afinity for Coke. My mom taped on her cassette recorder when I was a child the Coke jingles she liked them so much. I think Coke is probably one of the most international beverages in the world.

Having said all that, it doesn’t make me angry at all that the song was sung in many languages, but in a way I can see finding it odd since English is our prevailing language. It is an American patriotic song. Imagine if God Save The Queen was sung in another language, wouldn’t it be odd? I think we get annoyed because the people who are angry seem to be full of hate, instead of just calmly pointing out they think some songs should always be in English. I personally am not saying they (the patriotic songs) should or shouldn’t always be done in English, but I can see an argument for it.

When my husband and I saw the commercial during the superbowl he immediately said, “you know there will be people pissed off about that commercial.” That was his initial thought. He ruined my glee, because I was just soaking it in and enjoying it until he said that.

Mimishu1995's avatar

What the hell is wrong with all those people? What is so wrong with a song being sung in different language?
Coke has spread such a meaningful message. Why can’t any of them see it?
Or is it true that racist people are really that full?

By the way your question reminds me of this. It’s time I scream “What is wrong with you people” again!

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livelaughlove21's avatar

Uh, that wasn’t the National Anthem. Yikes.

I thought it was pretty boring, actually. I preferred the Budweiser commercial. I also liked the Greek yogurt one with John Stamos and the other Full House guys. Oh, and I loved that Cheerios brought that mixed family back – I hope it pisses those morons off even more. Muahahaha!

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syz's avatar

I actually had a small thought of “Uh oh”, and then I was like “Nah, that’s stupid, nobody’s going to get upset over a Coke commercial!”.

As for the commercial itself, it seemed like a natural reflection of Coke’s very successful “Teach the world to sing” campaign.

Didn’t affect me either way as to going out and purchasing Coke products.

whitenoise's avatar

I believe that ‘God save the Queen/King’ is today being sung as a national anthem in Lithuanian, Norwegian and in French. (French for Canada).

It also used to have a German version serving as the German national anthem.

JLeslie's avatar

@whitenoise Oh, I guess my example was a bad one. LOL. I wasn’t thinking about how so many countries are commonwealths and formerly ruled by Brittain. But, what do you think about my point regarding the patriotic songs of America? That commercial could easily have been done with people from many nations still sung in English. Arab-American, Italian-American, Jewish-America, Dutch-American, pick your country-American, children and families learn our patriotic songs in English.

When my husband became an American the ceremony was fantastic and they had a singer who sang many of our songs. God Bless America, My Country Tis of Thee, Star Spangled Banner, and a few others. There were people from 70 odd countries that day becoming Americans. English is a uniter. It is the common language we communicate with in America. I hear more English in very diverse New York City, than I do in parts of Miami, because NYC is so diverse that is how the Russian speaks to the Iranian.

As I said I don’t have a fundamental problem with singing the songs in another language, I don’t hate anyone for it, or think it is some sort of form of disrespect. If anything I think it shows how the immigrants who come to this land love and appreciate America. In my experience it is new immigrants who appreciate America most and are grateful to be here, who don’t take it for granted, sometimes more than some Americans who have lived here for multiple generations.

My only point was those American patriotic songs to me are English songs. But, I don’t see any sacrilege in singing them in other languages.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Someone on fb mentioned some of the ridiculous comments that were made on the Coke fb page. After reading several of them I posted, “I agree. Should have been sung in English only. And they should have only portrayed white people in the ads. And not just any white people, only white people whose ancestors came from England.”

Just retardation, IMO.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III I wouldn’t be surprised if people think you’re being serious and agree with you. Ha!

Dutchess_III's avatar

Pfffft! They don’t know me then!

Kropotkin's avatar

I think Coca Cola knew exactly that there would be this sort of reaction. It’s probably hardly any people at all, but on the internets, things get rather amplified when they’re seen by many people.

What this probably does is present Coca Cola as the drink of non-bigots. People will consume their drink just to make a statement to demonstrate that they’re not a xenophobe and differentiate themselves from those who made silly comments on twitter and facebook.

Meanwhile everyone can forget about legitimate reasons for not consuming their drinks.

Just to add: I think some of the comments are likely satirical. Poe’s Law at work. “Speak American if your in America”? Really? My troll detector lights up with some of those.

Rarebear's avatar

All the buzz about it has everybody talking about Coca Cola. They win.

Dutchess_III's avatar

:D. Plus they keep talking about UTI on TV. Universal Technology Institute. It’s killin’ me!

pleiades's avatar

@uberbatman It’s also well documented that Katharine Lee Bates was in a partnered 25 year relationship with Katharine Coman.(Perhaps nothing sexual happened, perhaps it did, what’s evident though is that the songwriter of the anthem was cut from a much different and very “Liberal” cloth)

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I missed all the fuss, so I didn’t realize all this was going on. I love the sound of other languages and really enjoy diversity. I think the mentality of the haters is best shown by the comments calling coke “asswholes”. Must be too ignorant to use spellcheck.

rojo's avatar

‘I’d like to teach the world to sing
In perfect English…”

Nope, doesn’t work.

” Oh beautiful for xenophobic,
angry, white, rude folk”

Nope, doesn’t work either.

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JLeslie's avatar

@Kropotkin There are plenty of people who say speak American. The daughter of a friend of ours once asked my husband to speak Mexican. She was 19 or 20 at the time and attending college.

Darth_Algar's avatar

Anything that gets xenophobic panties in a twist is good in my book.

Brian1946's avatar

One good thing about “free” enterprise is now that Coke has raised the blood pressures of numerous bigots, said bigots will probably exercise their market-based option of drinking voluminous loads of diabetes-inducing Pepsi, in a mass protest against all things multilingual. ;-D

Does Stephen Coalbear agree? ;-)

flutherother's avatar

They want everyone across the globe to drink the same Coca Cola. They pretend to celebrate diversity but they want us all to be the same.

Darth_Algar's avatar


Nonsense. They’re all about diversity. They even give you several varieties of Coco-Cola to choose from.

gary4books's avatar

It is a habit to say people in the USA are Americans. They are. But so area all who live in North or South America. It started in the wars when the USA troops went to England and said “We are Americans.” But so are Mexicans an even Canadians, who may deny the connection or name.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, we’re all from the North American or South American continents but when one asks “Are you an American?” it is understood that they are referring to the U.S.

JLeslie's avatar

My SIL’s inlaws used to call her “The American.” She is Mexican, they are Italian. But, saying someone is American is usually understood as being from the US, that isnhow it is commonly used. I would say someone is from the Americas, if they were from a different part of the American continent. I never use it regarding Canadians though, usually it is talking about Latin America.

It’s similar to how we say someone is Asian, and it understood they are from east Asia. I used to say Indians were Asian also, but then realized people don’t use the term that way. Basically Asian is a replacement for how we used to use Oriental, which is now not considered to be PC. It’s inaccurate to me to not include all parts of Asia, but that’s how it is. Same with African-American. There are many white African people. Continent does not necessarily tell you someone’s race, but someone high up decided African American is what we should call black Americans now. I understand the logic behind it, but I think it isn’t a good fix.

glacial's avatar

@gary4books This thing of people outside the US being Americans comes up here every so often. Technically, it is correct to refer to a Canadian or a Mexican or a Venezuelan as an American, but realistically, doing so will only cause confusion, and perhaps offence. As a Canadian, I would certainly be offended if someone called me an American. Please don’t.

JLeslie's avatar

@glacial Should we United Statesians be offended? JK.

Dutchess_III's avatar

:( It’s embarrassing that you feel that way @glacial.

Darth_Algar's avatar

I’m fairly certain that the United States is the only country that actually has the word America as part of it’s name, so there you go – Americans.

JLeslie's avatar

I just asked my husband what he called Americans growing up in Mexico, if he used estadounidense, which is what we were taught in Spanish class. It basically means United Statesian and the Spanish Speaking world calls us the Estados Unidos (EE. UU.) although sometimes some countries do use USA and EUA.

Coincidentally, for some more trivia, my husband had asked me recently why double E double U is the abbreviation (his first langauge is Spanish and he is asking me). I had to look it up, it’s because the double means it is plural.

Back to what my husband answered when I asked what he grew up calling us and he said without hesitation, “gringos.” Hahahahaha. I should have seen that coming. He also said they used Americans and not estadounidense, but Mexico often is different than the rest of Latin America on some things.

plethora's avatar

If it had been the National Anthem, I would have found it offensive. It annoys the heck out me to hear our National Anthem being sung by our pop culture icons who just have to put their special trademark twist on it. I heard an Italian sing it recently and realized it was the first time in several years I had heard it sung in its original version.

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