one of the
most passionately argued political topics this week
has been the chicken-based restaurant Chick-fil-A,
after its founder said in an interview that he was
for the "traditional family" and the "biblical
directly mentioned gay marriage at all,
although the fact that he donates money to
conservative organizations means it's probably true
that he takes the traditional conservative position.
The response has been passionate and reflexive, with
those supporting gay marriage posting thousands of
angry responses on the corporate Facebook fan page.
politicians have even called for the ban of the
restaurant to somehow punish the founder for daring
to believe something that about half of America
Politicians are trying to ban Chick-fil-A?
Make no mistake,
this isn't about chicken. Some people are
calling for a government response. That
makes this about more than just what people think
about the choices other people make in the bedroom.
This is a
question of economic liberty and using force to hurt
people we disagree with.
For example, Thomas M. Menino, the
Boston, said: ďChick-fil-A
doesnít belong in Boston. You canít have a
business in the city of Boston that
discriminates against a population. Weíre an
open city, weíre a city thatís at the forefront of
"Thatís the Freedom Trail. Thatís where it all
started right here. And weíre not going to have a
company, Chick-fil-A or whatever the hell the name
is, on our Freedom Trail...
"If they need licenses in the city, it will be very
difficult ó unless they open up their policies."
obvious contradiction of calling a place an "open
city" while threatening to ban an organization
because of the beliefs of the founder, the
problem here is that
this is the
wrong way to go about handling a difference of
the only politician calling for the ban.
it's already happening. Alderman Joe Moreno
in Chicago is already moving to ban Chick-fil-A from
opening in his area of Chicago,
government licensing as the method of stopping it.
His reasoning is just as blunt as the Boston
disagrees with Chick-fil-A's founder, and he wants
to use government power against the company because
of that disagreement.
The mayor of
Chicago has announced that he supports Alderman
Moreno, and will be trying to get the city to
isn't just about chicken anymore, or even gay
marriage. This is about political persecution for
believing a certain way.
It doesn't matter if you're the most liberal person
in the world,
if you support free speech, you should be horrified
at the use of government power to shut out
businesses whose owners have views contrary to local
politicians' views. Boycott all you want,
but keep the government out of this.
(Editor's (mine phh) note:
According to James Peron at the
Huffington Post, ... Even the ACLU (The
American Civil Liberties Union) -- a favorite
target of conservatives -- came out fighting.
Adam Schwartz, senior attorney for the Illinois
ACLU said "government
cannot... punish someone for their words."
He noted that Alderman Joe Moreno is "practicing
viewpoint discrimination" when he "refuses to
allow a business to open because its owner has
expressed a viewpoint that the government
The issues being brought up when it comes to the
Chick-fil-A aren't just about the opinions of an
older CEO. It's not even about the political
positioning of a corporation, because plenty of
corporations donate money to candidates who actively
work against same-sex marriage.
here is how people respond to those they disagree
with. There are essentially a couple of
options for people who disagree with Chick-fil-A and
want to show their disagreement have three basic
wonderful and should be used. On Chick-fil-A's page
there are thousands of comments left both in support
and in rejection of the company's founder's
The boycott is also important, because it's still
based on choice. If people donít support the actions
of a corporation, theyíre free to just stop shopping
there. The financial impact alone is more than
enough to usually either crumple corporations that
do whatís unpopular or convince them to go with the
bans. Use arguments instead.
In America, we believe in open conversation and
allowing people to make up their own minds about who
they will and won't support. That's why we shouldn't
force people to be of one religion or to be atheists
or something else entirely. People should be allowed
to make up their own minds.
Chick-fil-A doesn't actively discriminate.
If you're gay, you can eat there. If you're
straight, you can eat there. Your sexual orientation
doesn't matter at all if you want to be a customer
or employee of the company.
The only matter, the only real disagreement here, is
about the political positions of company's founder,
and what he does with his money.
If we're going to stay logically consistent, then
small-business owner who has donated money to Focus
On the Family should have his business shut down.
Anyone who voted against homosexual marriage should
obviously have their business shut down.
Give me a break. Anyone who believes that we
should use violence to stop the businesses of people
because we don't like how they vote isn't a tolerant
person. They're using violence rather than reason.
implications of the idea that government should use
force on people who don't support gay marriage means
that conservatives should be barred from business.
And why stop there? What's the difference between
owning a business and being an employee?
Obviously, few people will follow their ban
arguments to their logical conclusions. And that's
part of the point: They're not staying consistent,
their beliefs are either wrong or lead to even worse
discrimination than they're accusing others of. It's
a position that is just fundamentally wrong.
Double-standards and hypocrisy.
for those we disagree with, too. People who
claim to be for tolerance and "open cities" who turn
to government to stop businesses from existing
because of personal quibbles they have with the
owners and founders is just sad.
economics, it's probably illegal under most state
constitutions, and it's wrong. It's no way to carry
on a national debate.
issue is a question of rights. If someone supports
increasing taxes, that means theft under some models
of capitalism. If someone doesnít support gay
marriage, thatís a question of what people believe
their rights are. If someone supports going to war,
thereís a huge question of rights.
The idea that
government should punish people whenever they dare
voice their support for certain political position
means that our governments will decide other issues
as well. And why stop at corporations?
regulate churches, too?
In Canada, theyíve already gone that far, with their
Supreme Court currently deciding whether itís legal
for a man to even
list a Biblical passage that condemns
homosexuality. Not even quote it; just list it. That
really does matter.
Chick-fil-A story is a story about markets.
We'll soon see whether people really care what the
founder of Chick-fil-A believes about marriage.
We'll see because, in the end, people vote with
their dollars. Some will boycott, some will buy more
chicken, and most, honestly, just won't care.
That's the way these sorts of controversies should
be handled. Not with the mayor trying to openly ban
a business from existing because he disagrees with
the founder over something political. That's not
freedom of speech or freedom of expression or any
other freedom that liberals typically claim that
they care about.
But this is
about more than just markets. Itís about the right
to disagree with others without being politically
punished. If you disagree with people on the
topic of homosexuality, then argue with them.
Convince them with words. Change their minds. But
don't try to ruin their lives or crush their
businesses with government. That's nothing short of
tyranny, even if it's only over a chicken
Adapted from an article by
copy of this story can be found at:
beyond proof is faith. Belief in spite of proof is folly.
or email me if you have questions.
Amen and God bless you.