The controversy surrounding Coca Cola’s Super Bowl ad has focused public attention on the company’s pro-amnesty agenda. With the majority of its revenue coming from its international business, the company has long been known for its globalist rather than American world view.
Last year, Muhtar Kent, CEO and Chairman of Coca Cola penned an op-ed for USA Today, in which he argued that immigration reform is good for business. “My hope,” he wrote, “is that our leaders focus on creating a modern system… and a clear way forward for undocumented workers–a potential route to U.S. citizenship that bears all the rights, responsibilities and obligations of that coveted status.” Kent, who was born in New York City to the Turkish general-consul to the United States, holds dual citizenship in Turkey and the United States.
The ad instantly provoked a deeply polarized response on social media, with conservatives ripping the ad for promoting multiculturalism with a deeply patriotic anthem.
In an online survey taken by Sacramento, California radio station KFBK during the 24 hours after the ad ran, more than 2/3 of respondents said they did not like it. A surprising 46% of respondents, when asked for their reaction to the ad, said “It upset me so much I feel like boycotting the product,” while 27% said they “didn’t care for it.” Only 20% said they “liked it,” and 7% said “it didn’t effect me much one way or the other.”
An online survey taken by New Jersey radio station 101.5 found similar results: 60.5% of respondents “didn’t like it,” while only 27.9% said they “enjoyed it, well done.” Twelve percent were not sure what they thought of it.
On Monday, a representative for Coca Cola released a statement calling the ad “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.”
Critics like former Congressman Allan West aren’t buying it. “[T]he last thing any of us should want to see is a balkanized America,” he wrote on his blog Monday.
In the ad, Coca Cola featured children singing “America the Beautiful” in seven languages–English, Spanish, Arabic, Hindi, Hebrew, Tagalog, and one other–rather than only English.
Colonel West captured the sentiment of critics on his blog Monday:
[H]ere is my recommendation for what the Coca Cola marketing executives should have done. Coke’s “America the Beautiful” should have been sung in English and showed Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen of diverse races, sex, and creed deployed all over the world drinking Coca Cola. If you truly want to show a diverse commitment to service, sacrifice, and honor that enables us to live in “America the Beautiful” that would have been rated the best commercial advertisement of the Super Bowl. And we would be here talking about how we were all touched emotionally.
Neither Wieden + Kennedy, the ad agency that produced the commercial, nor Coca Cola responded to a request for comment from Breitbart News.