Last year, it was Christians protesting Starbucks red cups. This year it’s Starbucks green cups and people are protesting again. What’s going on?
In the midst of this crazy election season, Starbucks released a green cup that was, according to the CEO, designed to “represent the connections Starbucks has as a community with its partners (employees) and customers. During a divisive time in our country, Starbucks wanted to create a symbol of unity as a reminder of our shared values, and the need to be good to each other,”
It seems people assumed this was some sort of holiday cup and the reaction was swift:
And it’s not just a few people complaining on social media, but opinion pieces reflect a supposed subversive agenda on behalf of Starbucks against Christians and Republicans. The truth is, those green Starbucks cups are not the holiday cups. And if Starbucks rolled out a green cup for the holidays, so what. If you need a for-profit company to promote Christianity through marketing a $5 cup of coffee, you’d better rethink what makes Christianity… well, Christianity.
As I have said before, Starbucks or secular culture are not the holders of our sacred traditions and beliefs. Secular institutions are not the keepers of Christianity. We Christians are keepers of Christianity. We are the ones charged to be the messengers of the Christmas story. At the end of the day, companies are here to make money off Christmas. Stores are decorated with Christmas displays to get you to buy stuff. If Jesus were walking past a store during the Christmas shopping season, I’m pretty sure he would roll his eyes and place his palm squarely in his face… Or, Jesus would buy a Starbucks green cup, take a sip, and say, “And…?”
Freud supposedly once said, “Sometimes, a cigar is just a cigar.” I think we can safely say here, “Sometimes, a green cup is just a green cup.”
Let’s take a breath here folks and not insert our religious insecurities, political fears, and cultural anxieties into a little green cup.