During the Super Bowl yesterday, Coca Cola showed a commercial in which people from all across America sang “America the Beautiful” in their native languages.
America was in an uproar.
And at first I was furious with these people who so ignorantly berated Coca Cola for their commercial.
I am still unhappy with the response.
But in my anger I wondered, do you not remember where you come from?
Each one of us was an immigrant at one point. Unless you can trace your ancestry solely back to the Cherokees then you are an immigrant and you should be proud to hear that beautiful song sung by so many different people who call this country home.
America is known as the melting pot, not because we love soup, but because we are all different and came from different places that spoke different languages.
I couldn’t understand how people would not be swelling with pride after hearing that song.
But then I spoke to my mother.
My mom and I just had a discussion about the commercial and about her parents journey to America.
In her opinion, she thought that the people in the commercial should be speaking English. She believed that because America’s native tongue is English, that is what those people in the commercial should have been speaking. When her parents came to America they learned to speak English and they became citizens.
While I agree that to become a citizen one should learn to speak the native tongue of the country, I disagree about the particular commercial.
I enjoyed hearing America the Beautiful in other languages.
I enjoyed it because, while they are singing in their own native tongues, they are still singing it. They feel the pride that everyone should feel for their home, whether you were born here or not.
I am a proud American. I fly an American flag. But I was born into this country and did not need to work for my citizenship.
My grandparents on the other hand, worked very hard to become American.
My grandparents came to America not knowing any English. They came to raise their children in a better place, in a country that would give their children the opportunities that they, themselves, were not given in their home country.
They came to America, they learned English, they took their citizenship test, and they gained citizenship after working their asses off.
So I’ve decided to explain my stand.
I believe that America is the greatest country in the world because it is a melting pot of cultures from all around the world.
I believe that the mixing of these different cultures is what has made us so powerful, and allowed us to create things like football or Chinese food (the Chinese food sold in America is American by the way. People from China do not eat the same food we enjoy here.)
I believe that if you have worked hard to gain citizenship in this country you should be damn proud of yourself because it is not an easy feat.
I believe that if you were born here and granted citizenship you should never forget how important that is and how lucky you are.
I believe that speaking the native tongue of your country should be a priority, whether you are a citizen of Mexico, America, Canada or China.
I believe that adding your own culture to this giant mess of cultures is a beautiful part of being an American and that it is your duty, as an American, to share what you know, but to also be receptive to what is already established.
And I believe that this country has gone down the shitter because people forget that we are a brotherhood of individuals who have all come here for the freedom that was promised us, and for some strange reason, those freedoms are being taken away because people refuse to accept one another.
God Bless America because we damn well need it.