I don’t hide my love of Starbucks… I would visit every day if I could. Only 3 days ago I passed the 100 check-in mark on Foursquare at my local Starbucks (the reality is I have visited my home location far more than 100 times).

When Starbucks launched “The Way I See It” campaign in 2005 the retailer aimed to “inspire old-fashioned coffee-house conversations when it introduced [the] campaign.” Now, more than 10 years later the campaign is going strong and inspires more than coffee-house conversation…it has taken a global turn by being engaged on the web using many social media platforms.

People have taken to posting images from the campaign on their tumblr and flickr accounts while others have created blogs dedicated to exploring the sayings.

Did Starbucks really know what they would be creating? How placing sayings featuring the words of notable Americans on its coffee cups would/could shape a national/international dialogue? Well, it seems The Way I See It #43 has been around since 2005 and is reemerging as an important point of discussion.

The Way I See It #43:

The Seattle-based coffee maker has been accused of promoting a homosexual agenda because quote #43 is by author Armistead Maupin, whose “Tales of the City” chronicled San Francisco’s homosexual community in the 1970s and 1980s.

Maupin’s quote says his only regret about being gay is that he repressed it for so long.

“I surrendered my youth to the people I feared when I could have been out there loving someone. Don’t make that mistake yourself. Life’s too damn short.”

“The Way I See It” campaign does not set out to take a political stand but rather to encourage discourse, Starbucks spokeswoman Audrey Lincoff said.

Lincoff said the company does not characterize the personalities quoted on its coffee cups as liberal or conservative, but rather as a diverse group of artists, musicians, educators, activists and athletes.

I say keep it up Starbucks. Whether corporate decisions were made to tackle some of our lifetime’s deepest social issues or not…the discourse is happening and it is happening outside of your coffee-houses; it is a global conversation.