In the interest of transparency, let me confess my bias. I’ve done a lot of work over the years for one of the big soft-drink companies. Let me point out that I’ve seen that company do a lot to increase consumption of its diet drinks, bottled water, juice and healthy snacks. But let’s face it. Hispanics and African Americans are much less interested in diet products. Sugary drinks — often the sweeter the better — do well with them. There are a lot of cultural barriers to getting both these groups to understand the importance of being lean.
That was David Morse…in Gawker’s words, a “professional multicultural marketer of sugar water to minorities”. Sounds about right. And David Morse has no idea of just how racist he sounds when he asserts that blacks and Latin@s have more of a taste for sugar than white people (who, as we all know, NEVER get fat, much less obese. People of Wal-Mart tells us so!)
And of course, black and Latin@ consumers are breaking down Coke’s door BEGGING for ever huger servings of fizzy high-fructose corn syrup, right? Only them…not white people, who have the will-power and self-control needed to bolt down that atrocious aspartame swill known as Diet Coke:
Multicultural marketing is about talking to minorities — or if you prefer, the new mainstream — and representing them, acknowledging them and showing them that you care about their business. Could soft-drink companies and others in the sugar business do a better job of promoting healthy food and beverage consumption, particularly among African Americans and Hispanics? Absolutely. Do they owe these groups an apology? I don’t think so.
In a criticism of Mr. Bloomberg, Stefan Friedman, a spokesperson for the New York City Beverage Association said, “The city is not going to address the obesity issue by attacking soda because soda is not driving the obesity rates.” I tend to agree. The fault is with overconsumption. Responsibility lies with parents. A contributing factor is culture. On many levels, the soft-drink industry is being demonized as if it were the new big tobacco.
Hate to say it, David, but that demonization is richly earned. After all, you’re the ones profiting off those raised mortality rates of visible minorities, and off their so-called lack of self-control, which you slickly pass off as being a “culture” problem.
Those kids are growing up in the same culture as we white folk…a culture saturated in junk food, endless junk food. Ads for junk food are all around us, and the message is the same whether you’re black, brown or white: CONSUME THIS! CONSUME THIS IN MASSIVE QUANTITIES, FAR MORE THAN YOUR BODY EVER WILL NEED!
And Coke, to make it even more insidious, is liquid junk food. Whether sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup or aspartame (which, more insidiously still, causes us to crave sugar to make up for what our taste buds are being tricked into only thinking we’re getting), it is devoid of nutritional value. I’ve heard it called “liquid candy”, which is rather too nice a way of putting it, since even the junkiest candy has more nutritional value than Coke. (And it’s less fattening, too. You consume less because you fill up on it sooner.)
But yeah, Dave, keep patting yourself on the back about how Coke bears zero responsibility, and it’s all the fault of those unself-controlled black and brown people, who are more sugar-happy by nature and culture than the white people who consume the exact same slop in the exact same hugely bloated quantities per capita.
I’ve never been a cola drinker, but I don’t blame it so much on my German genes and Canadian upbringing as I do on the fact that being constantly, incessantly told what to consume by big corporations just utterly repulses me. Especially when I consider what Coke is doing in Latin America.
And I wouldn’t be surprised if learning this has a similar effect on the very target audiences you Coke-heads pride yourselves so much on penetrating with your racialized drivel.
PS: Courtesy of Gawker’s comment section, we learn that the high preference for sugary foods by minorities is a direct result of…are you sitting down for this?…MARKETING.