August 28, 2012

Chick-blaise: Why the Chick-Fil-A controversy is a non-issue

By Michelle Eigenheer–

The comments made by Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy in June and July are still sparking controversy in the world of gay rights.

However, Dan Cathy really didn’t say anything that everyone didn’t know. Chick-fil-A has, since its inception in 1961, been a company that has deep roots in the Christian faith of the founders. Chick-fil-A even closes its doors on Sundays to observe a day of rest for its employees. Why the fact that they don’t support gay marriage surprises anyone, I don’t understand.

Since this campaign against Chick-fil-A has started, I’ve seen comments criticizing the company for being “anti-gay,” organized kiss-ins and pray-ins and even comments made about how their religious views should be removed from the company. This last one, especially, is as bigoted as the belief that homosexuality is immoral or unnatural.

People seem to have forgotten, or were never aware, that a private company’s rights are very similar to that of a private citizen.

Just because a company serves the best chicken sandwiches ever, doesn’t mean that they have to bend over backwards and change their beliefs or policies because it will make their customers happy. Those customers choose where they eat, and they can easily choose somewhere else. The right of the company to have their own beliefs and openly voice them is as protected as that of the private citizens speaking out against them. The argument of the latter is inherently stupid.

To top it off, entire cities are attempting to ban Chick-fil-A from their community. Rahm Emanuel, mayor of Chicago, and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino have both come out saying that they will not allow Chick-fil-A to build new stores within their city limits. Both Emanuel and members of the Chicago city council have said that they will block applications for building permits and Menino, in a letter to Chick-fil-A says, “There is no place for discrimination on Boston’s Freedom Trail and no place for your company alongside it.” The irony is that in both cases, the cities are guilty of religious discrimination by blocking Chick-fil-A’s commerce because of their views.

I have to wonder how Rahm Emanuel can fight so ardently against Chick-fil-A, but welcome with open arms, Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation of Islam. The Chicago mayor recently accepted Farrakhan’s offer to use the Fruits of Islam, a group of Black Muslim men, to patrol the streets of Chicago in order to cut down on crime. It’s apparently not a problem that Farrakhan is infamous for his strong and numerous anti-Semitic and anti-gay remarks. There is a little bit of hypocrisy in that.

The bottom line is that Chick-fil-A has a right to free speech, a right to free religion and a right to commerce as long as they’re not doing anything illegal. So far, no one has accused them of any illegal activities, just ones that they deem anti-gay. While the people, who are speaking against them, are equally exercising their rights, it is disgusting that there is an entire movement with, essentially, the goal of taking away someone’s liberty.
If you don’t agree with Chick-fil-A’s views, don’t eat there. You vote with your money, and if enough people stop eating there, their business will crumble and disappear, and those who voted against them will have won. That’s fine, that’s capitalism, that’s democracy. Otherwise, it’s just a lot of people screaming a bunch of nonsense.

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