I’m not a big fast food fan. An occasional trip to McDonalds is my only claim. And I usually regret that choice about a half hour after eating a Big Mac. I have never been to a Chick-fil-a and until they were in the news (last year?) because of a shooting at one of their stores, I didn’t know how to properly pronounce their name. I assumed it was a Chick Filla. I really never gave it much thought.
So they are back in the news now, as the President of Chick-fil-a, Dan Cathy, gave an interview to a Christian organization recently and in that interview he expressed his support for traditional marriage.
“We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that.”
I didn’t hear the interview, but no one has quoted him trashing gays or discriminating against them in his business. But in today’s odd America, publicly supporting one thing means condemning another and the progressives are now out to destroy Mr. Cathy and his business. It’s the new American Way.
First came the Muppets. In ending their relationship with Chick-fil-a, Henson said
“The Jim Henson Company has celebrated and embraced diversity and inclusiveness for over fifty years and we have notified Chick-Fil-A that we do not wish to partner with them on any future endeavors. Lisa Henson, our CEO is personally a strong supporter of gay marriage and has directed us to donate the payment we received from Chick-Fil-A to GLAAD.”
Next came Boston’s Mayor Thomas Menino. In his rather slanderous letter to Chick-fil-a, he says he doesn’t think the company should pursue its plans to open a restaurant in Boston near City Hall.
“When Massachusetts became the first state in the country to recognize equal marriage rights, I personally stood on City Hall Plaza to greet same sex couples coming here to be married. It would be an insult to them and to our city’s long history of expanding freedom to have a Chick-fil-A across the street from that spot.”
And now the City of Chicago. Mayor Rahm Emanuel says
“Chick-fil-a’s values are not Chicago values. They’re not respectful of our residents, our neighbors and our family members. And if you’re gonna be part of the Chicago community, you should reflect Chicago values.”
And city Alderman Joe Moreno says he’ll block Chick-fil-a’s plans to open a new restaurant in Chicago. He is reported to have claimed he has “an ace in his back pocket”, to cite traffic issues to block approval of the restaurant.
So let’s review. Henson is a private company and is free to conduct business as they choose. But they point to their devotion to diversity and inclusiveness while saying they are ending their relationship because Chick-fil-a’s CEO’s opinion differs from the opinion of their own CEO. Well that doesn’t make any sense. Where’s the diversity and inclusiveness in that?
But far worse than the small-mindedness of Henson, is the blatantly illegal bullying of the public officials in Boston and Chicago. Has Chick-fil-a broken the law? Under what authority do the cities of Boston or Chicago have the right to discriminate against a private company based on the religious beliefs of the company’s ownership? Has the First Amendment been abolished and I just didn’t hear about it?
No matter where you stand on the issue of gay marriage, you must agree this is wrong. This has nothing at all to do with gay marriage. It is about freedom of speech and freedom of religion. Menino, Emanuel and Moreno do not have the right to punish private citizens by damaging their livelihoods because of their religious or political views.
They are nothing but thugs, using their positions of power to intimidate private citizens. They need to be exposed as such and thrown out of office. They have no understanding of the rights of the individual and no respect for the law they have sworn to uphold.
And I think I’ll stop into a Chick-fil-a this weekend for lunch. I’m still free to make that choice.