Starbucks holiday cups are brewing up controversy again

Olivia Bratton, Copy Editor

The animated advertisement was shared on Instagram and YouTube to promote the holiday accessories at Starbucks. Many believe that this shows Starbucks’s support for same-sex couples. (Starbucks via YouTube)

Another holiday season, another controversy over Starbucks cups.

In the spirit of the season, Starbucks released their holiday cup earlier this month, and some people believe that there is a secret message of supporting the LGBT community behind it. At first glance, the cup’s design includes a white background, doodles of Christmas trees, presents, mini Starbucks cups, and most importantly, two hands holding each other under a heart.

The video promoting the new coffee cups is stirring up rumors about a secret LGBT meaning behind the couple holding hands. The 30-second video begins by noting that “the holidays mean something different to everyone,” and it features characters of different races, ages, genders, and sexualities.

The brief advertisement shows two women touching and sharing a Starbucks coffee while fireworks burst overhead. This left Starbucks customers wondering the real meaning behind some of the cup’s holiday doodles, specifically the two hands symbolizing love.

Starbucks has been using holiday cups as a way to spread holiday spirit since 1977. This year, they released their white cup on November 1. (Starbucks via Instagram)

“Each year during the holidays, we aim to bring our customers an experience that inspires the spirit of the season, and we will continue to embrace and welcome customers from all backgrounds and religions in our stores around the world,” a Starbucks spokesperson said in an interview with CNBC.

Does this mean they support customers of different sexualties also? We cannot be sure; Starbucks left it up to the customers to decide how they want to interpret these festive holiday cups.