Photo Credit: Starbucks
People are outraged with this year’s highly anticipated Starbucks holiday cups and believe the coffee chain executed their Grinch-esque agenda by drastically changing the décor of their signature cups.
Gone are the festive snowflakes and holiday imagery that once decorated these famous cups the previous years along with the devotion of consumers within the Christian demographic. The outrage soon caused a firestorm in social media, creating the hashtags #MerryChristmasStarbucks and #ItsJustACup.
According to CNN Money, the #MerryChristmasStarbucks was first introduced by former pastor Joshua Feuerstein. Feuerstein became the voice of the enraged in a viral video which now has a little over 16 million views, accusing the chain of removing “Christmas from their cups because they hate Jesus.” He encouraged individuals with the same sentiment to say “Merry Christmas” instead of giving their names to their baristas.
To counter the anti-Starbucks movement, the hashtag #ItsJustACup started appearing, in hopes of soothing the chaos and reminding everyone the obvious. Users in social media soon began to rally under this hashtag voicing their disbelief and absurdity of this outrage.
Jeffrey Fields, the vice president of design and content of the coffee giant stated on the official Starbucks website, “This year we wanted to usher in the holidays with a purity of design that welcomes all of our stories.” The company added that the blank red cups should be viewed as a blank canvas that people should use to create their own holiday memories of all backgrounds.
Offended consumers managed to garner the support of the controversial republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, who suggested a boycott of Starbucks should be in order though he later retracted his comments. Television personality Stephen Colbert also poked fun at the issue by suggesting the chain should decorate the cups with Christmas ornaments such as lights and a nativity scene glued on the lid, with the super festive cup sitting on a small Christmas tree.
Though various solutions are being suggested, the decorations on a cup do not define the holiday spirit. Like Fields mentioned, it remains neutral and spread a message of acceptance of all religions and beliefs.
The explanation Fields and Starbucks gave to the unsettled public feels necessary especially now that modern society has been ravaged by ignorance and Islamophobia amidst the ISIS crisis. A message of acceptance and tolerance is in order, even if it comes in the form of a blank, red coffee cup.
Though there are far more important issues Americans should be angry about regardless of religious backgrounds, people will always find something to be mad about. So while others are fussing over a red cup, the rest should just chill and enjoy their tasty holiday lattes.