As part of its “Reasons to Believe” campaign, Coca-Cola has run four ads tailored to Irish, Dutch, Norweigan, and British audiences. All but the Irish ad show two men holding hands in what appears to be the end of a same-sex “marriage” ceremony.
The ads consist of alternating positive and negative images, culminating in how life is better with Coke. One man is shown playing with a cat, another is shown tripping off a stage, and other people are shown in sporting events, raising money for a cure, and other common situations.
In the ads showing the two men post-ceremony, their vignette follows a scene where a car is being kicked by unidentified people. According to the ad's on-screen text, “For every display of hatred...there are 5,000 celebrations of love.”
Monica Cole, director of OneMillionMoms.com, told LifeSiteNews.com that the company could face a backlash in the United States. “Conservative Americans will and should stand up for truth and decency no matter the company they are up against,” she said.
Coca-Cola “should remain neutral in the culture war and should not cave to political correctness, or they run the risk of losing loyal customers,” she added.
The “marriage” scene, which according to international homosexual activist publication EILE Magazine actually uses footage from an Australian civil union ceremony, has drawn unexpected criticism by same-sex “marraige” proponents.
They say Coca-Cola's decision to substitute an interracial marriage couple for homosexuals in the Irish ad is an act of cowardice on the company's part.
Coca-Cola is a longtime supporter of same-sex “marriage.” It is a regular sponsor of the New York City “Pride” Parade – including in 2014 – and has been given a 100 percent rating from the Human Rights Campaign.
A spokesman for the company acknowledged the differences in the Irish ad, but noted that other changes were made based on market research. “The core objective is that the vignettes in the ad resonate with people in each country and [represent]...cultural issues that they are familiar with and value," the spokesman said. "You will note for example that the St Patrick’s Day scene is only included in the Irish version as it is only here that it is truly relevant from a cultural perspective.”
The Coca-Cola spokesman also said the change for the Irish version was made because the nation has civil partnerships “for gay people...[but] gay marriage currently is not [legal].” According to ELIE, Australia has the same civil union laws as Ireland.
The new ads are a stark departure from a recent Coke commercial in Argentina that promoted the joys of parenthood.
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