Another year, another controversy over a Starbucks holiday cup.
This season, Twitter is convinced that the cup features a same-sex couple holding hands. The illustration in question is part of this year's "Give Good" theme, which lets customers color in their coffee cups.
BuzzFeed News first reported on the theory, pointing out the parallels between a Starbucks ad featuring hand-holding women and the hands on the cup itself.
— British LGBT Awards (@BritLGBTAwards) November 6, 2017
"While people who follow both Starbucks holiday cup news and LGBT issues celebrated the video, the ordinary Starbucks customer probably didn't realize the cup might have a gay agenda," writer Vanessa Wong stated.
"I can attest to the lesbianism of The Hands," confirmed a gay colleague of Wong's.
Starbucks did not confirm or deny "the lesbianism of The Hands." In a statement, the coffee company said, "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."
However, a tweet from the verified Starbucks account did appear to lend some credibility to the theory.
We're happy you enjoy the new campaign, Rufus!
— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) November 13, 2017
In past years, conservatives have criticized Starbucks for the "war on Christmas" and being too secular in its holiday designs. Many also denounced the new cup for its possible "gay agenda," with some promoting the hashtag #BoycottStarbucks.
The new Starbucks cup has lesbian couple on it. Rom 1:26 “because of this,God gave them over to shameful lust”...
— Jimmy H Peralez (@h_peralez) November 2, 2017
@Starbucks looks like Starbucks is at it again... promoting gay and lesbian Christmas. Other than being seen at Starbucks not sure why anyone drinks their coffee... it’s burnt and sucks. #BoycottStarbucks
— Tim (@wave_slder) November 17, 2017
Ban Starbucks for not supporting everyone and pushing one idealism upon us all! Just another Progressive Liberal company owner pushing their divisive agenda upon everyone who is not a liberal or may disagree with gay lifestyle. Let Liberals buy the cool aid from Starbucks! Ban!
— Michael Crowell (@Michael22973515) November 17, 2017
That "holiday" you are profiteering off of is a #christian one. Are you going to have pic of Muhammad on a Ramadan cup next? Or do you reserve your disdain for religion to Christianity?
— Taldren (@Paldren) November 17, 2017
you just lost a customer .
— RayZ (@rzienow) November 17, 2017
And on the other side of the spectrum, there are those who believe the cup should be gayer.
2018 Starbucks Christmas cup preview pic.twitter.com/HWbS1LwJ4f
— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) November 17, 2017