Commentary: Why Does Diversity Spur Hate in a Diverse Nation?

Feb. 18, 2014 / By

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Editor’s Note: Coachella Unincorporated is not supporting Coca Cola products, simply expressing one point of view regarding the content of its recent television commercial.

NATALIA CERVANTES/Coachella Uninc

When I saw Coca Cola’s “America the Beautiful” commercial during the Super Bowl, I knew there would be immediate criticism.

I knew the images of Americans – of different races, ethnicities, religions and sexual orientations — with “America the Beautiful” in different languages would spark controversy.

Almost immediately #boycottCoke and #wespeakAmerican began to trend on Twitter.

The ad (aside from trying to sell sugary beverages to ALL of us) was showcasing the differences and similarities in the daily lives of Americans.  I have found that throughout history, “different” is scary. Not everyone is so eager to accept change. Is this the core of criticism and ridicule that was sent out via social media after the ad aired?

Because we are free to speak what we want, often without consequences, it is easy to only think of ourselves. Why is it that we feel our own words are important, yet we criticize others when they speak their mind?

Our country was founded by people who wanted to be free and pursue happiness. People continue to come here from all over the world for the same reasons; we are a melting pot.

It should not be shocking when we see Mexicans in the grocery store buying the same food. Or an Indian family sitting in the booth next to you, enjoying a dinner, speaking Hindi. Or a group of South Africans dancing next to you in the style of their people. That’s the focal point of our lives as Americans; diversity. It is our establishment, it is who we are.

Everyone in this country can trace their roots to a foreign country and revel in the beauty that their bloodline goes past the borders of America. Yet, why is it that when people from those countries come here, whatever we consider “foreign” stops being beautiful?

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Coachella Unincorporated

Coachella Unincorporated

Coachella Unincorporated is a Youth Media Startup in the East Coachella Valley, funded by the Building Healthy Communities Initiative of The California Endowment and operated by New America Media in San Francisco. The purpose of the project is to report on issues in the community that can bring about change. Coachella Unincorporated refers to the region youth journalists cover but also to the unincorporated communities of the Eastern Valley with the idea to “incorporate” the East Valley into the mainstream Coachella Valley mindset.