Original Ad: 2013
Superbowl Ad: 2014
I wrote this post last June when the original commercial first aired. I'm sharing it again due to the racism surrounding the 2nd version and its airing during the Superbowl....
It is rare to see interracial families featured in commercials or even t.v. shows for that matter, so I'm thrilled to see an interracial family in the ad above. However, I am so disheartened to learn of the hateful comments surrounding this very ad.
When I saw the story on various media outlets about the Cheerios commercial featuring an interracial family and the racist backlash because of it, sadly, I wasn't surprised. My family dealt with the exact same issue when we were featured in USA Today just 1 and 2 short years ago.
Article 1: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/health/wellness/marriage/story/2011-11-07/Interracial-marriage-More-accepted-still-growing/51115322/1?loc=interstitialskip
Article 2: http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/health/wellness/marriage/story/2012-02-16/US-rate-of-interracial-marriage-hits-record-high/53109980/1
I was so excited to have our family represent IR marriage in USA Today and then I remember being disgusted, shocked and hurt by the hateful words spewed in the comment section. I later spoke to a friend of mine at USA Today and she told me to stop reading them or they would drive me crazy. They ended up having to remove some of the comments because they were so racist. I had to pull myself away and realize when it comes to racism, change doesn't happen overnight, even though I wish with all my heart it would. I do have faith that one day it will be a non-issue. Clearly, as we see with the negativity regarding the Cheerios ad, we are not there yet.
This year will be our 20th wedding anniversary and 21 years together. As I have shared many times on this blog, we have dealt with all forms of racism during our years as a couple and family. I used to get angry, cry or get upset, but now I just feel sadness for anyone who carries hate in any form. Whether someone is racist, homophobic, or against another religion...hate is exhausting. I can't express enough how important it is for anyone who holds hate in their heart to let it go. In the end, the only person hate affects is the hateful person. Hate is stress and stress kills. Living a life filled with love and happiness cures more than hate, it leads to a longer life.
The thing is...nobody is born a bigot. Racism is taught. When we start accepting each other, we will stop hurting each other. I have an idea...let's start today, while eating a bowl of Cheerios! =)