Recently, a Cheerios television commercial gained national attention in a way that was never intended by the cereal's owner, General Mills.

The commercial, just 30 seconds long, depicts a darling little girl, not even 5 years of age, speaking to her mother. "Mom" is caucasian, while her daughter is noticeably darker skinned. Both have a brief conversation, in which the girl asks her mother about the benefits of Cheerios for your heart, which the mother confirms. The girl grabs a box of Cheerios sitting in front of her on the table, and runs into another room. The scene cuts to an African-American gentleman sleeping on a sofa. He opens his eyes to discover that someone has poured a whole box of Cheerios on his chest, Puzzled, the man calls out a name - presumably that of his wife - and the commercial ends with the word "Love" imposed on an otherwise blank screen.

When I first viewed this commercial - it's available on YouTube if your curious - I had an "AWWWWW!" moment, because I thought it was absolutely precious. Unfortunately, there are quite a number of people whose opinion on the commercial was decidedly different, with a much more ugly tone in nature. These people were not shy about voicing their thoughts - that they considered it inappropriate to depict an obviously interracial family in the commercial. The huge number of nasty postings caused the commercial to go "viral" on the Internet, and required YouTube to disable the comments section on the video due to the racial slurs being hurled about.

General Mills recently issued statements defending the commercial, explaining it was responding to the changing times and lifestyles that have been developing in this country over the years. General Mills is also standing by the commercial, allowing it to continue to run.

The extreme negative reaction of those people to seeing a happy interracial family depicted is something that absolutely boggles the mind. Here it is, the second decade of the 21st century, in which we've elected and re-elected a president of obviously mixed racial background. And yet, when a commercial airs in which a white woman and a black man are depicted as husband and wife with a child, it brings out the worst in a bunch of hate mongers who are absolutely convinced that such an action is an abomination.

As you might guess, a lot of the recorded comments came from white men, screaming about racial impurity, and making the same typical bigoted contentions which have plagued the human race since the dawn of mankind. As a journalist, I sadly have no choice but to support these people's right to make such comments, no matter how much I might disagree. But as a person who has experienced first hand what it like to be the victim of prejudice, I continually wish such Hitlerisms would die the total and ignorable death they deserve.

Interestingly enough, there were from certain quarters a number of black women who also made disparaging remarks about the situation. They observed was that the woman in the commercial was slim and attractive and wondered why she wasn't fat and ugly.

The answer to that is commercials - particularly television commercials - have always used attractive people to sell their products. It's the nature of the beast, because we all have a tendency to gravitate toward what we find is beautiful, pleasant, pretty or otherwise attractive.

Still, the reaction of these women also neatly demonstrates another fact. Prejudice knows no boundaries - there will always be people who believe themselves to be superior due to an accident of race, religion, cultural and/or economic background, or any number of other factors that a small mind can latch on to. Although we've come a long way over the years - interracial relationships were at one time pretty rare in most parts of this country - it's evident that we still have quite a ways to go before humanity as a whole accepts the fact that only one race really matters under such circumstances - the human race.