When Dan Cathy, CEO of the fabulously successful fast-food chain Chick-fil-A, told Online Baptist Press that he supports the “traditional” family, he ignited a firestorm of controversy.
Not unlike the vast majority of the two billion or so of his fellow Christians around the world (to say nothing of the countless numbers of adherents of other cultural traditions), Cathy opposes the tireless efforts of some of his contemporaries to rearrange the institution of marriage so as to accommodate homosexuals.
For this, he was vilified by left-leaning ideologues, including the mayors of several of America’s largest cities.
For instance, former White House chief of staff to President Barack Obama and current Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel disinvited Chick-fil-A from the Windy City by saying that the organization’s “values” are not “Chicago’s values.” Another telling example is that of the mayor of San Francisco, Edwin M. Lee. Lee tweeted: “Closest #ChickFilA to San Francisco is 40 miles away & I strongly recommend that they not try to come any closer.”
In response to what many perceived to be a blatant violation of Cathy’s First Amendment rights on the part of these elected officials, former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate, Fox News television host Mike Huckabee, came to Cathy’s defense by declaring Wednesday, August 1, “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day.”
On Wednesday, legions of Americans from all across the country came out in support of Chick-fil-A. Such was the boost in its business that some conspiracy theorists began to speculate that Cathy actually sought to provoke the ire of Chick-fil-A’s enemies by making the remarks that he did.
But whether there is any truth to this or not, left-wing and militant homosexual activists are not at all ready to abandon their campaign against the business that the Cathy family built.
Today homosexual activists are planning a “National Same-Sex Kiss Day at Chick-fil-A.” The “kiss in” will consist of same-sex couples either photographing or videoing themselves as they kiss inside a Chick-fil-A restaurant.
A Facebook page has even been established for the occasion. Organizers posted: “Let’s show Chick-fil-A thanks for their support of Love, Equality, and the Real Definition of Marriage! Invite your friends!”
Whether the anti-Chick-fil-A “kiss in” demonstration will be anywhere near as massive in size as the pro-Chick-fil-A demonstrations that dotted the country from coast to coast on Wednesday remains to be seen. But if the comment thread on its Facebook page is any indication of what to expect, things are not looking especially promising for Chick-fil-A bashers.
While the “kiss in” has its supporters, it also has its share of critics.
One poster commented: “I don’t want to see gay, lesbians, or straight people kissing or being up on each other. #against PDA [Public Displays of Affection]!”
Others stated their opposition to the event even more bluntly:
“What a waste of time. Do you really think we care if you kiss. Your [sic] just a bunch of bully/haters that feel you are the only ones with rights. GROW UP!! It’s freedom of speech for all!! Your [sic] not hurting them [Chick-fil-A] with this, as you are just encouraging us to spend more money there showing support.”
“I plan on going and eating chicken and I’m going to enjoy every minute of it.”
“Definately [sic] will not be taking my kids to Chick-fil-A tomorrow just to have to watch a bunch of sick-ass perverts swapping spit with one another and who knows what else.”
“Chick-fil-a has always been one of many of our favorite restaurants over the years, however, with the recent developments, I must say that now it will probably be at the absolute top of the list. A CEO with a spine, conviction, integrity, and boldness in the midst of a perverted generation? Sounds more like a Lion than chicken to me.”
One poster made the point of noting that President Barack Obama once articulated the same exact position on marriage for which Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A are under fire today.
“In case some folks did not know this … President Obama during the last election supported Marriage between a man and a woman … so here we are today with the whole Chick-Fil-A thing and the Media attacking this restaurants owner for having the same values as Obama did for most of his Presidency and Life apparently???”
It is true that until very recently, Obama insisted that he was opposed to same sex marriage. Moreover, he opposed it on the grounds of his “faith.”
When asked in 2004 what exactly it is about his “religious faith” that “calls” him “to be against gay marriage,” Obama responded, “Well, what I believe, in my faith, is that a man and a woman, when they get married, are performing something before God, and it’s not simply two persons who are meeting.”
The questioner then asked Obama whether he believed that homosexuality is a choice or whether he thought that it was “innate.” When Obama replied that, for the most part, he believed that it was innate, the questioner immediately suggested that his position on marriage was inconsistent with his position on the source of sexual orientation.
“That being the case, Mr. Obama — that being the case, if something is not a choice, if something is innate, then why isn’t it a civil right?”
No. I think there are a whole host of things that are civil rights, and then there are other things — such as traditional marriage — that, I think, express a community’s concern and regard for a particular institution.
Obama then declared definitively, “I don’t think marriage is a civil right.”
The “kiss in” is not likely to affect the fate of Chick-fil-A for the worst. However, even if the improbable occurs and it does succeed in weakening it, this could prove to be the proverbial Pyrrhic victory.
At least this is the judgment of one Chick-fil-A supporter — a 19-year-old gay man named Matt Perez. Perez said:
As a gay man, I say let him [Cathy] not support gays. When the gay community and gay activist groups push on anti-gay people and organizations to change there [sic] minds and opinions via bullying or forced involvement, I fear it would make whatever accomplishments taste cheap like a greasy coin.
Photo of Chick-fil-A restaurant: AP Images