Chick-Fil-A: Official Chicken of the Tea Party, American Family Association, and Westboro Baptist

God Hates Chick-Fil-A

God Hates Chick-Fil-A.

When I first read The Onion article (“Chick-Fil-A Debuts New Homophobic Chicken Sandwich: ‘Queer-Hatin’ Cordon Bleu’ Goes On Sale Wednesday”), I simply thought it was a goofy satire on the well-known Christian fried chicken business, which is closed on Sundays.

It was not until this afternoon (I am presently in Israel digging at Tel Azekah) that I realized that the article was a response to comments made by the President of Chick-Fil-A, Dan Cathy, who was quoted last week as saying he was “guilty as charged” for supporting, what he called the “biblical definition” of marriage as between a man and a woman.

Biblical definition? Really? How fundy is this guy? I’ve addressed this issue before.

The Chick-Fil-A President continued:

“We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that.”

Married to our first wives“??? What is he saying? NONE of Chick-Fil-A’s employees are divorced? Only upper management? Apparently it’s not enough to not extend benefits to same-sex couples. It’s not enough to publicly take a position on gay marriage (which is NEVER a good business move). But now we’re going to make an issue out of anyone who has been divorced and/or widowed and remarried??

This is a good business strategy? Apparently, if your business strategy is run by Rick Santorum’s campaign.

It’s no wonder that cities like Boston and Chicago are blocking the expansion of Chick-Fil-A into their major metropolitan areas. Who wants a bunch of fundamentalist-owned businesses opening in major urban areas?

A Chicago Sun-Times story reads:

Appearing on the Ken Coleman Show, Cathy was further quoted as saying, “I think we’re inviting God’s judgment when we shake our fist at him, you know, [saying], ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’ And I pray on God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we would have the audacity to try and redefine what marriage is all about.”

It is “prideful” and “arrogant” to stick up for the civil rights of certain Americans? I seriously can’t tell if this quote is from the present same-sex marriage debate or the Civil Rights movement decades ago.

This is REALLY not helping the image of the South and southern companies as a bunch of fundamentalist, homophobic, Christians makin’ fried chicken except on Sundays.

And as for me, I’ll never eat at Chick-Fil-A again. Done. Let them become the poster child for the Tea Party, the American Family Association, Westboro Baptist, and any other individual or organization that wants to openly discriminate against others based on their sexual orientation.

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39 Responses

  1. [...] Chick-Fil-A: Official Chicken of the Tea Party, American Family Association, and Westboro Baptist [...]

  2. What amazes me is the way these fundamentalist christians think that their God, creator and ruler of a billions of galaxies, is obsessed with the minutia of human procreation. We evolved billions of years after God created the humans who temporarily cling to our tiny rock, near an average star on the outer reaches of a vast galaxy. And yet they think we are God’s special concern and His commands come from a contradictory book which portrays a cruel tyrant. (I don’t like chicken anyway.)

  3. Although I don’t expect to change your thinking based on your statements here, your expressed opinion would indicate that you’ve managed to assiduously avoid the truth of this situation.

    Cathy’s statements are beliefs, not operating philosophy. He didn’t make disparaging remarks about the LGBT community, offer political statements about the validity of gay marriage, make any statement about hiring homosexuals or even insinuate a reluctance in serving them. Why would he?
    By way of comparison, how is Cathy’s viewpoint different than Ben & Jerry’s? Last I checked, even though B&J are decidedly Progressive in their mission statement, beliefs and in regard to whom they donate, I don’t recall any politicians (even the Conservative ones) suggesting THEY be banned from the workplace.

    Ours is supposedly an inclusive society: your belief is your belief. When did this change? Even the Boston Globe (no Conservative bastion they) came out against the Boston mayor’s stance.
    Quote: “But which part of the First Amendment does Menino not understand? A business owner’s political or religious beliefs should not be a test for the worthiness of his or her application for a business license…”

    http://articles.boston.com/2012-07-25/editorials/32831191_1_gay-marriage-business-license-freedom-trail

    You are certainly allowed to think as you will, but the only folks I see that are disparaging or belittling someone else are on your side of the discussion.

  4. Right.

    NONE of the employees of Squirrel-Fil-A is divorced, none is married to any Spouse No. 2 (or 3, etc.) ?

    Maybe it’s time for Dr. C to bring out that chart he featured earlier this year showing the “variety” of “Biblical marriage” ?? Yo, Doc ? Are you a-listenin’ ?

    . . . in my discussions with these folks, they believe that they have the right to define “Biblical marriage” in any way they see fit (and they make excuses for their own divorces and adulteries), which … kinda sorta (ahem) … takes away from the very concept of “definition,” does it not ?

  5. It’s always risky to quote out of context, or not read the entire original article or interview to which you respond. Mr. Cathy was referring to his FAMILY business, and I understood him to be saying that he is thankful his immediate family members
    have managed to avoid divorce…which most people would find to be admirable.

  6. Hi, cd,
    By “we”, I would assume that Cathy is referring to the upper management/owners/his immediate team, etc. He can hardly speak for all employees in over 1600 franchises.
    I can’t imagine that he meant “all employees”, ….do you?

    And as illogical as that would be, why would it bother if you if he did?

    Again, I have no problem with Ben & Jerry’s being a pointedly and proudly Progressive company. They sell decent ice cream: case closed. They don’t force me to buy it, and thus I don’t wish to see them shunned or boycotted, even though their politics are very different from my own.

    When did differences of worldview become an unpardonable sin?

    This entire brouhaha seems to be a deliberately misunderstood, twisted and ginned-up misreading of his words.

  7. [...] from injustice, and to do so not only for a year. But I scarcely know where to begin.And what about Chick-fil-A? If I buy those delicious waffle fries, am I contributing to discrimination against gays and [...]

  8. Belief in monogamous marriage is not discrimination…. believe what you believe and let others believe what they choose as well!

  9. Belief in marriage between a man and a woman has nothing to do with discrimination… believe if you will in gay marriage… give others the same courtesy… not sure why CfA can’t believe what they choose to believe!

  10. The use of religion to discriminate against the civil (not religious, civil) rights of some Americans should not be legislated.
    If a business owner publicly pronounces his pride regarding his discrimination against gay Americans, then I can pronounce my disgust with him, and I can choose not to eat there.
    What is the problem with this?

    My point is that it is a poor business decision.

  11. They can ‘believe’ what they want, but they must abide within the law.
    Should the public wish to voice its disgust with a particular business, and choose not to solicit it, this is the right of the public.

    Again, what is the real issue here? Every one is voicing their opinion. Chick-fil-A is voicing theirs, and I am voicing mine. Why is this a problem?

  12. Hi, Bob,
    The problem is twofold:

    (1) QUOTE: “It’s no wonder that cities like Boston and Chicago are blocking the expansion of Chick-Fil-A into their major metropolitan areas. Who wants a bunch of fundamentalist-owned businesses opening in major urban areas?”

    By your statement here, it is apparent that you support the blocking of a business to operate, based solely upon the beliefs of its owner. That is not “voicing your opinion”. That is supporting the limitation of commerce, based upon an owner’s religious belief. As I detailed above, in no way did Chick-fil-A do anything operationally to discriminate against anyone, or even imply that they wished to.
    Would you equally support a mayor who wanted to refuse a permit to an openly LGBT business? I certainly wouldn’t, and I suspect that you wouldn’t, either.

    The difference is that I want all legal businesses to be free to operate, and you wish to pick and choose, based upon their respective worldviews.

    (2) QUOTE: ““Married to our first wives“??? What is he saying? NONE of Chick-Fil-A’s employees are divorced? Only upper management? Apparently it’s not enough to not extend benefits to same-sex couples. It’s not enough to publicly take a position on gay marriage (which is NEVER a good business move). But now we’re going to make an issue out of anyone who has been divorced and/or widowed and remarried??”

    With this, you are either incapable of understanding the basic context of his statement, or are deliberately misinterpreting it. You appear to be an pretty intelligent guy, so I’ll assume that you understood the context. That means you deliberately misconstrued what Cathy said in order to score rhetorical points.
    That’s disingenuous, and petty.

    I respect you for expressing your opinion. God Bless you for having one, and for having the integrity to allow this discussion to occur.
    That said, you hurt your cause when you take statements and distort their obvious meaning, and when you support illegal actions which limit, rather than encourage, the freedom to conduct business.

  13. david,

    fun facts: http://www.snopes.com/politics/sexuality/chickfila.asp

    btw, “Would you equally support a mayor who wanted to refuse a permit to an openly LGBT business?”

    A: NO. I wouldn’t support any candidate whose charitable organization funds groups that advocates the suppression of civil rights of certain Americans based upon their sexual orientation. That’s the point.

    regarding his comments on divorce, why did he even go there? what can possibly be gained by bragging about the self-righteous fact that none of his family/management/company (he wasn’t clear) has been forced to experience the tragedy of divorce? when you add together his anti-gay comments, the divorce comments, and the ‘shake their fists’ comments, it certainly seems that he was on a high-and-mighty roll, one that i believe he’d rescind in a heartbeat if he could…

  14. Personally, I doubt that he would rescind a syllable, Bob, but that’s off in the land of hypotheticals…..

    As for why he went there, as you put it: he was asked. And, not being a politician, he gave an answer which was consistent with his beliefs.
    Period.

    One other thing: I have noticed that people on your side of this continue to use the term “anti-gay”, as you just did in your comment. This is a misnomer, and a deliberate one. There was nothing “anti-gay” about his statement. Cathy expressed his belief in “the biblical definition of a family”.

    “Anti-gay” & “the biblical definition of a family” are not synonymous terms.

    One suggests an antipathy towards homosexuals; the other is a support for marriage as it has been defined for eons. By way of a corollary, I love my family: that doesn’t imply that I hate yours.
    I am not “anti-your-family” just because I love and support mine.

    Support for the traditional, biblical definition of marriage means just that, ……and nothing more.

  15. Hi justturnright:

    Why are you so defensive ? Yikes.

    Why do you feel it necessary to “interpret” what Cathy said ? How sad that you feel this way. He said what he said, not what YOU would prefer that he said, or what you would prefer that he somehow “meant”. SO work on that problem you have, please.

    JTR, try reading your Bible (any version) sometime. You will find many things, including that the notion that “Biblical marriage” is not just “one man-one woman at a time” (which is the misrepresentation that Christian groups make), but includes much more. Cargil has a chart on this, you may wish to consult it, provided you get permission from your minister, first.

    You seem like a pretty intelligent guy, which clashes with much of the content you’ve posted, here.

    And please work on your odd belief that you speak for “God” … okay ?

    BTW — if you feel like telling us — which denomination claims you as a member ? A big step to reveal this (obviously), but still it might enlighten us.

    I am very concerned for you.

  16. Interesting that Chick-fil-A violates Biblical principles … when it’s “convenient”:

  17. good find. this is a real problem, b/c nowhere in the NT is this prohibition ever trumped or rescinded.

  18. Hey, cd,

    Love the part of your comment about being defensive.
    Funny, that. I had not heard that having a simple disagreement was now equated to being defensive.
    By that definition, Bob is being defensive by writing this very post, since he disagreed (rather vehemently) with Mr. Cathy.
    I wouldn’t term either of them as defensive, but that’s your call.

    As I said in my initial comment, I don’t really expect to change your thinking on this. That doesn’t change the fact that this remains a freedom issue, nothing more.
    Chick-fil-A should have the freedom to operate without expecting retribution or faux outrage by politicians over their owner’s stated beliefs, religious or otherwise. I expect the same for Muslims, Christians, Jews, Gays, Atheists, Vegans, ….and every other group you can name.
    If they are operating legally, that should be enough in our country.
    And if others are going to be outraged by someone’s statement, it’s more honest if the initial statement was kept in context, and not deliberately misinterpreted.

    I listed my problems with Bob’s post above, and I’ve noticed that you have conveniently avoided answering either point.
    I’ll take that non-answer as my answer.

    Lastly, I appreciate your concern.
    I’ll pray for you, in return.

    Have a good weekend, partner.

  19. [...] we’re dealing with when we talk about racism and homophobia. And this is why people are so outraged about the Atlanta-based Chick-fil-A scandal. Yes, they are different issues, but they are treated [...]

  20. justturnright:

    If you want to avoid having a discussion about any of this and choose to deal with the very prospect of having a discussion with the technique of changing the subject … yeah, that’s being defensive. But it’s to be expected. It’s tough to keep religious folks (the particular brand is unimportant) on point … you all have your little scripts and you are loathe to depart from them and the security blanket function they offer you.

    Cathy is (of course) selective re: “Biblical principles” which is a point that you avoid, and understandably so. And saying that because you love your family doesn’t imply that you hate anyone else’s is — again — a Straw Man Argument that your side depends on for its very survival. How sad that you run away from discussing these points, but how typical that you would deal with that by (you guessed it) changing the subject.

    Your lack of willingness to answer these questions we will take as your answer, which is sad and disappointing.

    I am not challenging anyone’s freedom to “operate” (Cathy’s or anyone else’s)… and I do not pretend that “God” has given me instructions. For those who engage in the latter … I’d recommend Thorazine.

    Have a good weekend, buddy. WIth whatever version of “true Biblical principles” it is that YOU like: there are many such versions from which to choose, which is how it should be.

  21. justturnright:

    I don’t like the idea of polygamy (personal opinion), but … it certainly comes under the heading of “BIblical Marriage”.

  22. I am decidedly NOT a scholar, but I’m comfortable with the fact that I know what “defensive” is, and Just Turn Right AIN’T the one acting so overtly defensive. It appears to be just the opposite. I read the thread, and would like to know how JTR “changed the subject”.

    Also, thanks to CD for the suggestion that people of faith should be on Thorazine. I guess when you can’t be tolerant, you insult. Nice.

  23. LRinPGH:

    My best advice is to read what I wrote and then to read what he wrote, on the issues of defensiveness and changing the subject, and … to think . . . objectively.

    FYI, I am tolerant of ALL religions. I think that EVERYONE should be able to fabricate his/her own religion (or to join with others in coming up with something), get tax benefits, etc. So that makes me more tolerant that a lot of folks. Are YOU “that” tolerant, too ? Hope so.

    Perhaps you equate “tolerance” with “never criticizing”. You’d be wrong. NO religious group or religious belief is “entitled to respect” or “entitled not be criticized”. The whole “entitlement mentality” seems to be rampant; that bothers me but perhaps it doesn’t bother you … I have no idea. Repeating: NO religious group is “entitled” to be free from criticism, although every religious group (whether the group exists now or has yet to be invented) — as long as no penal laws are broken — has the right to be tolerated. (Sorry: No slaughter of neighboring groups is permitted, even if “God” tells you to do so!)

    And if someone thinks that he/she gets instructions from God … yes, that person DOES need Thorazine (or maybe some of the more modern drugs . . . reliance on Thorazine makes me appear to be a bit old-fashioned!). … After a period of drug therapy, the visions disappear and the voices start getting less and less audible.

  24. cd,
    You must have been a hoot back in your high school debate club. You do realize, of course, that your last reply basically amounts to “I know you are, but what am I?”, …..plus a couple ad hominem attacks.

    I have pointed out my two basic areas where I found fault with Bob’s post. By way of an illustration, so that it could be more clearly understood by you, I offered the “My family” example. Somehow, you have taken that illustration as a changing of the subject.

    At this point in the discussion, I am beginning to wonder if you simply have trouble with basic reading comprehension.

    Having a spirited back-and-forth is always fun, often illuminating, and is usually one of the main purposes of blogs such as this. However, going forward, IF you (and Bob) desire to attract people to this site with whom you have any level of disagreement, you may be better served by reading more closely what they are saying.

    Your call.

    Regardless, I hope you have a pleasant week. I’ll be thinking of you (and smiling) when I visit Chick-fil-A on Wednesday.

  25. I would be interested to find out Chick-Fil-A’s policy on hiring gay people–or if they discriminate there, too.

    http://www.theopinionatednation.com/2012/07/28/chick-fil-a-the-official-restaurant-of-the-westboro-baptist-church/

  26. JTR: … Abraham, Jacob, and Gideon and many other important figures mentioned in the Bible (any version) . . . had multiple, simultaneous wives. . . .

    and so none of them had a “Biblical Marriage” as Mr. Cathy and lots of other Christians define it.

    WOW. . . . Wait ’til God finds out.

  27. “But now we’re going to make an issue out of anyone who has been divorced and … remarried?”

    Luke 16:18 – Every one who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.

    Pretty simple. Can’t get out of that with ‘got to take in it context’.

    I’ve spoken to Christians who say that a gay couple would not be welcome to join their church as members because their homosexual behaviour is a sin. Similarly a couple who are having an affair would not be supported in their relationship. But a divorced and remarried couple? No problem. Screw Jesus on that, we’d lose half our congregation!

    Same as you won’t hear a pastor tell obese folks in the pews they need to repent of their gluttony, or telling the wealthy among them that it is almost impossible that they’ll enter the Kingdom. They won’t because they know their job depends on the sea of gluttonous divorced rich folks in front of them. It doesn’t depend on the gay folks who aren’t.

  28. Dr. Cargill,

    Wasn’t the tradition in Old Testament days that a man could walk his wife to the end of his property and tell her to basically “get lost”? And then, if she went into the town and was seen consorting with another man, she could be stoned to death for committing adultery?

    Similarly, aren’t there New Testament verses that talk about the divorced getting re-married?

    Your insight would be greatly appreciated.

  29. I’m not certain about your first scenario. The Jewish divorce certificate (the get) does involve a ceremony, but to my knowledge it declares both parties (including the woman) free to remarry.
    In the NT, Paul urges Christians not to get married (1 Cor 7:8) because it causes ‘pain in the flesh’ (1 Cor. 7:28), but he does allow those who lack ‘self control’ to marry, but only to one wife (1 Cor 7:9).

    Couples are not to divorce, but if a couple does divorce, they are instructed to remain unmarried (1 Cor 7:10-11). (You can argue that this applies only to women, but then you’d have to explain why only women can’t remarry and men can, which is the traditional sexist fundy position.)

    I find it quite odd that the lowest divorce rates tend to be in the so-called ‘liberal’ north and northeast (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/01/lowest-divorce-rates-by-s_n_790159.html#), while the more conservative, Southern states in the traditional Christian ‘Bible belt’ have the highest rates of divorce in the US (http://247wallst.com/2011/08/25/the-states-with-the-highest-divorce-rates/), with Oklahoma on top.

    So much for the conservative Christian ‘biblical marriage’ argument.

  30. Why are you supporting the Zionist state’s founding myth? There were never any Jews in Palestine before the 1900′s.

  31. This is clearly false. Just plain false. Read a book, or maybe come dig. There were Jews in Ottoman Palestine, and Ayyubid Palestine, and Mamluk Palestine, and Umayyad Palestine, and Byzantine Palestine, and Roman Palestine (they fought a revolt and all), and Hellenistic Judah, and Persian Yehud, and Judah, and Israel…

  32. In response to a couple of points here. The Bible belt has more divorces because people marry far too young and with far to little formal education or life experience behind them to have the skill sets to make it work out. Marriage is encouraged at an early age and usually will not work out under the circumstance.

    Secondly, I am not certain it is accurate and/or fair to place Chick Fill A in the Westboro Baptist Church category. Chick Fil A in and of itself has no hate speech signs in its restaurants nor did Cathy ever say anything directly hateful. He has clearly exercised his freedom of speech as everyone is allowed to do in our society. You can either agree or disagree as is your inalienable right under the US Constitution. As I have stated in another post, my argument with
    many Christian fundamentalists is underlying bad theology and poor understanding of the religious precepts of Christianity.

  33. If is very telling that in Bob’s chart (or cartoon) about biblical marriage there is nothing there about same sex marriage. So, if we are going to use this as an argument to be taken as an “opposition” to traditional marriage between two beings of different sex, which in the human race we call man and woman, then the chart is not necessarily valid.

    By the way, before jumping to conclusions about my position (I hate this word in the context of anything sexual, including but not limited to gay marriage), I emphasize that I am merely pointing to the fact that people are making too much of a biblically correct chart which does not support their specific position (there we go again…).

    If I may add, what probably the proponents of the biblical marriage chart really defend perhaps, is that if anyone comes up tomorrow defending the types of marriages described therein (the chart), namely, polygamy, concubines, war spoils, or if a girl in a fit of rage decides to avenge her rapist by compelling him to marry her, working and supporting her, you must be consistent and consider such unions also as a civil right! I propose that the chart, other than an “in your face” value, has no value for the argument in this thread. That is not to say that people who use the term “Biblical marriage” are geniuses and are example of biblical “scholarity” on issues of marriage.
    I have my view on the issue of religion marrying people but, as a conservative minister, I’ve have made enough enemies for defending it and I don’t believe I should make new ones here.

    Thanks!

  34. I would also add that if you want to boycott any business on moral grounds, that is also a personal decision and one has the right to do so. However, no business in the US will completely pass the smell test. Large corporations such as GM and even major media outlets (even some deemed to be socially conscious) are heavily invested for example in the porn industry through obtuse ownership arrangements. Said industry is often exploitative especially of women. Do we then stop buying their cars? Where does it stop?

    There are MANY examples of this out. There are things produced and sold and services rendered everyday by companies that have seedy side-deals of questionable moral value for profits where the public is not even remotely aware of the arrangement in question. Do we boycott EVERYTHING? What if a boycott shuts down a location and the workers all lose their jobs? Is there a greater moral good that has been achieved then? These are questions we all need to consider.

  35. “It’s no wonder that cities like Boston and Chicago are blocking the expansion of Chick-Fil-A into their major metropolitan areas. Who wants a bunch of fundamentalist-owned businesses opening in major urban areas”

    How is blocking someone from doing something based on their beliefs any better than blocki…. Oh I see… They need to agree with the gays beliefs but the gays don’t need to respect their beliefs. Ok… That is pretty typical in this country. This isn’t a govt. institution that is blocking gays from their rights. Its an old chicken shop owner that doesn’t support gay marriage. So what. I think gays should be able to marry but you HAVE to respect others beliefs too. Come on…

  36. Does Chick-fil-A still support organizations that rally against gay marriage?

    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/09/chick-fil-a-re-evaluates-funding-for-anti-gay-marriage-groups/

    It looks like Chick-fil-A may be changing its tune.

    And no, a city council can grant or deny whatever they want, just like Dan Cathy can say whatever he wants. Correct? If the KKK wanted to open a white supremacy bookstore in those cities, the City Council would be well within their rights to deny it. They’d lose the business and the tax dollars, but they’d preserve the tenor of the downtown they are seeking to promote. It’s WHY they have city council permits in the first place.

  37. [...] Chick-Fil-A: Official Chicken of the Tea Party, American Family Association, and Westboro Baptist [...]

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