America, the King of Beers (Seriously?)

So much of what I’ve been hearing in the news lately about the United States – especially concerning politics – has caused me to respond with complete disbelief. And all I can say is, “Seriously?”

When it comes to politics, I not only hear other people around me saying, “Seriously?” I also hear them making threats. My friends to the left of me are threatening to move to Canada if Donald Trump, the presumptive republican nominee, wins the presidential election this fall. My friends to the right of me are threatening to move to Canada if Hillary Clinton, the presumptive democratic nominee, wins. With all of the divisiveness and dissatisfaction with the establishment, it’s pretty easy to assume that our national pride is at an all-time low.

Budweiser, the self-proclaimed King of Beers, announced last week that it is changing the name on the labels to “America” . . . Seriously?  When I heard it on NBC Nightly News I had to look at my TV to see if it was actually a Saturday Night Live sketch. I was sure that I would turn toward my screen and see an alcohol ad in the style of “Bass-O-Matic”, “Love Toilet”, or “Damn, My Mom is on Facebook Filter.” But it was real news – American style. After I shut the TV off, I still thought I imagined what I saw and had to look the story up online. It just didn’t seem possible to me to put the name of a country and lyrics from its national songs on a product, but I guess it is. After all that has happened in the U.S. this year, I don’t know why I am still surprised by anything. The patriotic beer will be available next week through the presidential election. I know that Budweiser is now run by a company in Belgium, but I assume the ad agency for Budweiser is still located in America. Have the execs handling the account not been paying attention to the current mood among our fellow countrymen?

If sales of  Budweiser’s “America” beer do well this year, I will assume that it’s because new ISIS recruits are using the beer cans for backyard target practice. And, that people who don’t know where they should go to the bathroom in this country are using the empty bottles.

With so many citizens ready to head to the greener political pastures of the Great White North if they don’t get their way this fall, Budweiser might have been wiser to change its label to Canada. I really wish Budweiser would have re-named itself, Seriously? That kind of branding could actually promote unity in the United States. Maybe it would encourage all of us to come together and share some laughs over a cold one, since Seriously? is what so many of us – across the political spectrum – have been thinking this year.



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© 2016 by Julie Ryan. All rights reserved.
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