In what was actually the second week of the great Chick-Fil-A debate, we saw a nauseating amount of commentary from both sides on this giant controversy. Admittedly, a few days ago I found myself having had enough – I was sick of hearing about it and questioning whether the ongoing discussion and protest was really even in the best interest of the LGBT community. Let’s face it, before Dan Cathy’s statement and the enormous response there were Americans who actually had not heard of the fast food chain. They aren’t present everywhere in the US and in comparison to brands like McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King, and many others, Chick-Fil-A is relatively small. So it bothered me that here we were making a household name out of them and motivating a freaking “Appreciation Day” at that. However, once I got over my annoyance at the whole thing – and having to continue covering it for this site – I realized how very important it is that we as a community do everything we can to spread the word about why it is so wrong for anyone to ever ever again spend money with the company (and why we should all go kiss each other there today).
In an aha moment, I finally woke up to the simple fact that when you give Chick-Fil-A your money, they take it and use it to fund the persecution of gays and lesbians worldwide. It’s not about free speech or religion and one man’s right to his opinions and personal beliefs because it’s not one man donating money to causes that work to deny our community our rights, and in some cases our lives – it’s an entire company. But I am not the most articulate defender when it comes to this subject and why the boycott must go on, so I thought it would be best if I shared some of the posts from the past week that helped me better wrap my head around this debate so that I was better versed when confronted with someone on the other side. I hope these pieces help your conversations as well because, amazingly, there are a lot of people out there eating extra helpings of chicken sandwiches this week.
Why this isn’t about marriage, religion, or tolerance…
Wayne Self, http://www.owldolatrous.com.
- In 75 countries in the world, being gay is illegal. In many, the penalty is life in prison… In 9 countries, being gay is punishable by death. In many others, violence against gays is tacitly accepted by the authorities. These are countries where we would be killed. Killed.
- Two organizations that work very hard to maintain this status quo and roll back any protections that we may have are the Family Research Council and the Marriage & Family Foundation. For example, the Family Research council leadership has officially stated that same-gender-loving behavior should be criminalized in this country. They draw their pay, in part, from the donations of companies like Chick-Fil-A. Both groups have also done “missionary” work abroad that served to strengthen and promote criminalization of same-sex relations.
- Chick-Fil-A has given roughly $5M to these organizations to support their work.
- Chick-Fil-A’s money comes from the profits they make when you purchase their products.
Why it’s not silly to boycott chicken sandwiches…
Guy Branum, http://www.huffingtonpost.com
The arguments against a Chick-fil-A boycott are many: we lack the numbers to do any real damage, we lack the solidarity to do any real damage, we will terrify middle Americans by acting like thought police, and hey, gay guys are too weight conscious to eat fried chicken sandwiches anyway. I don’t care. We need to boycott Chick-fil-A, not to send a message to Dan Cathy, but to send a message to ourselves and our friends.
Gays are an interesting minority group for three significant reasons: we are relatively invisible, we are diffuse, and we are popularly portrayed as frivolous. Boycotting Chick-fil-A can help us address these problems.
Why we should all sign Marci Alt’s petition to meet with Dan Cathy…
Marci Alt – http://www.change.org
Mr. Cathy has his opinion, but he should hear from us and from fellow Christians who disagree – and he should know how his donations are hurting families here in Georgia.
I’m inviting Chick-fil-A COO Dan Cathy and his family to join my family for dinner — at his place or ours — to see that we’re just like any other American family. We care deeply about our faith, our family, our friends and our community, and think there’s room to turn this debate into a dialogue.
And, in case you need to be reminded of how important this fight is – that Dan Cathy is not alone, “The Least Subtle Tweets From Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day…”