Friday, July 27, 2012

Some Thoughts on the Chick-Fil-A Brouhaha

OK, so I rarely embark into writing about public opinion topics. That being said, I don’t intend to dedicate much time to sitting down and compiling some commentary on a matter. I often give Christians a hard time for their ridiculous protests and railings against similar issues so I thought it only fair that I stay balanced and address the “other side’s” ridiculous actions this time around.

So, the Chick-Fil-A hullabaloo. The CEO, as if anyone needs informed, made a comment about how (in summary) the company embraces biblical definitions of marriage. Please note, he said this.  I would assume that it’s not on CFA’s wall of business conduct behind the counter nor have I ever seen vinyl letters on the entrance doors to their restaurants that spell out that you must be heterosexual to eat there. He said something.

I barely tune into news or follow any mainstream headlines too far but even I saw that the Boston mayor is apparently all in an uproar over it stating, “[CFA] doesn’t belong in Boston” because of Cathy’s “discriminatory stance”. Chicago has apparently joined the fiasco, attempting to block the erection of new CFA stores because, “those discriminatory policies from the top down is just not something that we’re open to. …We want responsible businesses”. (What does that even mean?) Facebook posts by “atheist” friends of mine call Cathy out as an “***hole” and so on and so forth.

Here’s my two cents people: get over it. Any avid reader of anything that I write knows I’m neither liberal, nor right wing. I’m interested in neither political party. I’m not a member of any Christian denomination and I don’t gather with those who enjoy sitting around slandering any other faction of people. The thing that gets me about this specifically is that those who are always coming up against the Christian majority are doing the exact same thing as they always complain about the Christian’s doing! “I don’t like what you said!” “You offended me!” “I don’t agree with you so get out of town, you don’t belong here!” Hypocrisy anyone? So I ask you atheists, liberals, gays - what happened to equality, opportunity, tolerance and allowing people to just believe whatever they want? Is this not what you preach 24/7? It’s a double-standard and if you really felt that way it would go both ways.

To stay on topic for another moment, what about the next time you go through the Wendy’s drive-thru? Before you pull up will you get out your smartphone and google Dave Thomas to see if he endorsed your personal beliefs before you order a Number 3 combo? If, back in 1992 he was reported to have told his uncle’s neighbor’s mother that he didn’t think gay unions were the same as heterosexual ones, would you turn around and go somewhere else? Where would you go where you were absolutely sure that the business completely agrees with your personal belief system? It’s just an asinine concept and approach to living life. Oh, and what if I were a Christian mayor of a large city and you wanted to establish your new donut shop in my city? What if you told the newspaper that you happened to be an atheist and you thought Christianity was wrong? What then? Could I too petition to keep you out of my city? Ridiculous!!!!  I’m honestly surprised that the LGBT community is making such a stink about all of this. And the atheists too? Seriously? To me, it totally makes my respect for your desire to see fairness and equality derail. It’s like you’ve stepped into the role of the step-child that James Dobson never wanted. Overreacting in response to an issue you didn’t like, just like your step-daddy does.   

To me, this just goes to show that everyone’s all in the same boat when it all boils down to it. “I think this way, you think differently. You shut up and allow me to speak what I think!” Selfish, conceited and arrogant mankind at its finest. Without Christ we’re all the same. Doesn’t anyone else see this simple truth? Only being established in His love can man ever have a chance to ever truly put others before themselves. So for now, you all go on and bicker back and forth with one another. Picket one another’s businesses and yell back and forth with one another. I’m going to go play with my son.


Richard B. said...

Thanks Joel. Glad you noted that Cathy has only said something. There is no record that CFA has done anything but provide service. However if the GLT groups follow through with their "love in" some employee mill probably give them ammunition to cry foul.

Trust said...

I have no problem with a boycott. That is their right, even if they are wrong.

What I do have a problem with is use of government force, as in Boston and Chicago. That is just wrong and intolerant.

I've found that people who preach faith are far more tolerant than people who preach tolerance.

Joel Spencer said...

I'm afraid I'd have to disagree with you Trust, in regards to your last statement. The Body of Christ is likely the most divided and segregated community in this modern era.

The division doesn't even stop from interaction with those who don't embrace Christianity but also flows freely into those who do!

Denominational segregation and "my church" versus "your church" mindsets prevail in every city in this nation. Even doctrinal differences of opinion divide and separate local gatherings. As Paul exhorted, "may there be NO divisions among [us]".

I personally believe that when you look up modern-day Christianity, "intolerant" would be the first word viewed.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if you are unaware of the facts in this situation or intentionally chose not to present them. But the reason this whole thing became such a huge issue is not because Cathy made the comments he did. It was because after he made the comments it became known that chic-fil-a donates significant sums of money to organizations whose purpose is to deny equal rights to the LGBT community.

People wouldn't care so much if they were just his opinions. They however do care when they find they are spending money at a business that is actively trying to deny others (or themselves) basic rights.

Would you support a business that gave money to an organization that actively campaigned against you being able to be a christian, write a christian blog, or live your life as you choose?

Of course not. You might even protest it. That is the difference. You don't see atheist trying to keep you from being a christian. They may protest things where christianity tries to force itself on others in the public square. But you don't see atheists or atheists organizations lobbying the government to keep you from being who you are.

But what should I expect. That is the christian way. That's the sad part of this. Christians seek to pass laws to make everyone live by their ideas and principles even if that means denying civil rights to people that don't think exactly like them. Atheists simply ask religious groups not to try and force their ideas and such on them in every corner of the public square.

Yet Christianity can't see this because they have so completely marginalized those in the LGBT community that they see them as barely human and not deserving of the same rights simply because they don't believe the way they think they should.

There is a significant difference in those two stances. Yes atheists and LGBT's do say live and let live. The overwhelming majority of those in either of those communities would never dream of trying to get laws passed to deny you any of your civil rights just because you are a christian. But that is exactly what the organizations that chic-fil-a supports are trying to do to those in the LGBT community.

In other words your not comparing apples to apples here.

Joel Spencer said...

Anonymous: The first major problem with your comment is that you've errantly lumped me into mainstream Christianity pool of beliefs and actions. I don't live by "Christian" standards that

I don't personally care what the belief system is of a CEO of a fast food chain. What they choose to do with their money is their choice and if I don't want to support their endeavors then I can choose not to. I don't have ANY interest in protesting any business (or anything period for that matter).

I do believe we would agree that the Christian community at large as treated ALL those who don't believe as they do as lesser. This is obvious and undeniable.

Please keep in mind however that not all who follow Christ and adhere to the true principals of Christianity follow this mainstream approach.

In the end, regarding this issue, my stance remains the same. Those who say "do what you want with your life, money, resources, etc" have no right to stand up and say, "hey, don't do "THAT'! It's not fair."

If this community TRULY stood for equality and freedom to choose whatever one wishes, then this instance with CFA should also be allowed to unfold as THEY choose.

I'm personally growing quite weary of BOTH sides whining about each other all of the time.

Anonymous said...

I will start by apologizing for lumping you into the mainstream Christian culture. Glad there are a few Christians out there that don't believe that way.

I can even say that I can respect the fact that your stance seems to be the same regardless of which side is doing the protesting.

I guess I would still say there is a difference to the nature of the protests though.

We are talking about one group of people that are very actively trying to deny another group of people equal rights. I think that is a situation that should be protested.

If not for people protesting and standing up for others women still wouldn't vote in this country, our black friends and neighbors would still be considered second class humans without the same rights as you and I. It is a real possibility that slavery would still exist.

Thankfully there were those that were willing to stand up to these injustices.

In my opinion this is another of those times. While chic-fil-a itself may not be putting up signs proclaiming their anti-homosexual views the bottom line is that the company itself is giving significant sums of money to groups whose purpose is to deny a group of people in this country their rights and treat them as second class citizens.

By doing nothing we marginalize those whose rights are being threatened by basically saying you and your rights as a person aren't worth enough for me to make stand.

By doing nothing we marginalize our very selves for not caring enough to make that stand.

So I end with this. I can respect that your even handed and equally critical of both sides in these type of matters. I truly wish the mainstream Christian culture could see their intolerance as you do.

I still think you aren't comparing apples to apples here. There comes a time when we have to make a stand. There are issues that are worth raising our voices and being heard. For me when one group of people tries to deny basic rights to another group of people we have found one of those issues worth fighting for and in my opinion the time to fight is when you first realize there is an injustice being done.

I will end my comment and again apologize for generalizing about you.

Joel Spencer said...

Anonymous: Thanks for sharing your opinions on the matter (as well as your apology). The beauty of this nation is that we have the freedom to take a stand for what we believe in. We ALL have that right without exception or exclusion.

I have no personal agenda other than striving to live a life modeled after Christ and learning to love those around me. Whether we all agree or not is irrelevant as this nation is one big pot of diversity. There are things to stand for of course, we just all define what that looks like differently.

Best regards to you as you carry that out how you see best in your journey.

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