Let’s Eat Some Chicken
What are you doing for lunch next Wednesday, August 1? It’s Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, and I’ll be at my local Parker restaurant plopping down my cash for a cluck sandwich to support this decent family company against the onslaught of the free-speech-violating, free-enterprise-suppressing, freedom-of-religion-hating liberal mob that wants to destroy it.
Not because the company discriminates against gays in hiring or refuses them service; no such charges are even alleged. But simply because company President Dan Cathy is an unabashed Christian who believes in the only kind of matrimony God approves in the Bible, a marriage between a man and a woman. So do I – and I am sick of being branded a bigoted homophobe because I, like Mr. Cathy, think a wedding cake requires a bride and a groom on top.
And we’re in the mainstream here. Though a majority of Americans agree with me and Dan Cathy and God on marriage, the liberals who disagree try to deny us our right to our views by intimidation and vicious name-calling. And act out with kinky demonstrations and sophomoric kiss-ins. But now they are increasing hostilities – now they are trying to take away Christian believers’ actual right to make a living.
Those who are really spreading the bigotry and discrimination are the government officials like Boston’s mayor who proclaimed Chick-fil-A is not welcome to open restaurants in Bean Town. Copycat Mayor Rahm Emanuel followed by vowing to block two restaurants planned for “his city” by proclaiming that this Christian company’s values are “not Chicago’s values.” Which leads to wondering what precisely are “Chicago values” – the values of the drug-dealing bullies and murderers who really run “his” city?
The big question is where the Boston mayor and his copycats got this breathtakingly despotic idea that government overseers are entitled to determine whether or not a business can open. That idea starts at the top, as in President Obama’s now famous “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen” speech. Before that telling sentence, he said, “Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive.”
For Obama, the “American system” isn’t free enterprise or free markets, or anything with “free” in it – he is clearly mocking those throughout this speech. He means the American system of government “allows” you to thrive. And of course the roads and bridges. He means the government giveth and the government taketh away. The mayors are just following through on his concept. You have government to thank for its generosity in building those roads and bridges (hey, don’t we pay for them?) and its benevolence in “allowing” you a license to open your restaurant. Or not.
When government can decree who it will allow to achieve success, and who it will not, based on whether it agrees with the business owner’s religious views, that government is a regime of tyranny. Has the persecution of Christians really come to this? Are any agnostics and atheists and Muslims who don’t accept the idea of gay marriage also to be called haters, and denied business licenses?
The government cannot and must not use its power to impose economic apartheid on people with whom it disagrees. It’s incredible that those who scream “victim” minus any factual discrimination whatever, boldly incite discrimination against those who have different views. Not only is this wrong and unlawful, it also persecutes the entrepreneurs who individually own and operate each of the 1600 Chick-fil-A restaurants. Now there’s even talk of closing down college campus eateries. College students are now the thought police.
At least New York City Mayor Bloomberg is resisting the demagogue impulse. “You can’t have a test for what the owners’ personal views are before you decide to give a permit to do something in the city,” said he, citing concerns about censorship and freedom of speech. “You really don’t want to ask political beliefs or religious beliefs before you issue a permit. That’s just not government’s job.” Though Mr. Bloomberg has a blind spot about an individual’s right to consume large sugary drinks, he is pretty solid on the First Amendment. Then too, the mayor is Jewish and may know enough of history to recall that one of the Nazi government’s first steps in oppressing the Jews was shutting down their shops and businesses so they couldn’t earn a living.
Let’s get out there and eat some chicken.J
Joy Overbeck is a journalist and author who contributes often to this website, and to her quirky God blog, www.godsayshi.org. Please visit and comment!