by Andy Nowicki
I’ll admit that I had an immediate, visceral, and startlingly profane reaction to the now notorious Coca-Cola advertisement broadcast during the Super Bowl, as my poor, patient wife can attest.
The commercial, as surely you must know by now, features “America the Beautiful” being sung in various languages while a dippy montage unfolds featuring breakdancing blacks, hijab-adorned Middle Eastern women, yarmulked men, loveably grizzled septagenarian Latino cowboys and adorable urban effeminates (with a few sparse hints of white, seeming-heterosexual suburbanites begrudgingly thrown in as if in afterthought).
Here it is, in case you’ve managed to keep yourself blessedly ignorant of the hideous spectacle until now:
My response, it seems, was not unique, though the reasons for my own extreme aversion to the ad probably differ from that of most of its other haters. Though I am indeed straight (in every sense of the word) white (though dark-hearted), and American (if supremely alienated) by birth, I still don’t feel the need to have “my kind” affirmed by a major corporation during a Super Bowl advertisement. I’m quite aware that the global multinationalist elites who run the show aren’t in the least concerned with appeasing an inconsequential pissant like me, nor do I require their affirmation, which is altogether bogus in any event, being merely predicated on opportunism and trendy ideologizing. (That is to say, even the simperingly-smiling, luminously-lit headscarfed Arabess, the two besotted queers laughing it up in the skating rink with their adopted daughter in tow, and the rest of the exemplars of ostensibly “righteous” diversity in the ad are nothing more substantial than mascots, as easily discarded as embraced when our rulers see fit to do so for their own purposes.)
Nevertheless, I am deeply in sympathy with those reviled representatives of “Middle America” (that irritatingly nebulous name for “places in the country where whites still numerically predominate,” used in alternate praise or blame, depending on the source) who felt so revolted by this commercial and made their extreme displeasure felt on social media. Why shouldn’t they feel disrespected? The ad is essentially making the point that they don’t matter, that their culture and heritage is negligible, that the future of America belongs to imported exotics speaking in foreign tongues. It isn’t even remotely “xenophobic” to correctly perceive a slap in the face as a slap in the face, and it’s moreover perfectly natural to respond angrily when one is slapped.
Moreover, if these “Middle Americans” complain a bit obstreperously about their ongoing dispossession, as portrayed symbolically in this commercial, they are instantly branded as “bigots” by the same perpetually sneering, thoroughly mediocre, Jon Stewart-quoting clones who were ready to pounce on any dissent from the giving of the Miss America tiara to a dusky-complexioned Indian girl late last year. Even some supposed cultural conservatives throw them under that ever-proverbial bus, blaming liberals for having invented a tempest in a teapot in order to paint an unflattering portrait of the opposition as unenlightened rubes.
The fact is that when someone explicitly insults your heritage, values, and identity, whether directly or through smarmy omission, it ought to piss you off! Getting smacked around should make you desirous to smack back. Thus, I hardly blame the red-state yokels of ’Murika for being spitting mad enough to spit away their Cokes and never touch another drop of the blessed confection. While I’m assuredly not a populist, there are times when the populace’s instincts are sound, and this is surely one such time.