Categorized | Fun Stuff

On Chick-Fil-A, Gay Marriage, Waffle Fries And The Myth Of Freedom

Although I’m sure I don’t have to issue disclaimers, I’m going to issue them anyway:

1. I like Chick-Fil-A’s food and I always have. Back in my “stroll through the Granite Run Mall for 6 hours on Friday night” days in my teens, I would walk by Chick-Fil-A about 10 times a night getting free samples from the elderly samplers. It’s just good eating.

2. I don’t really care that much what Chick-Fil-A’s politics are. I don’t really care who they contribute to or don’t. I don’t think it would affect whether or not I would buy food there. They have every right, as a private business to donate to whatever cause they’d like (within reason). And consumers have every right to decide whether those donations should change their view of that business.

I always thought it was curious that people would not listen to Rage Against The Machine based on their politics, but would choose to support Guns N’ Roses, Motley Crue, who have countless DUI’s and domestic abuse arrests between them. Vince Neil even killed a guy drunk driving.

3. I don’t actually have a political affiliation. As I’ve written many times about sports, I have a hard time believing that any issue is best solved with only two sides. In life, like in sports, I love to explore the grey in between the black and the white. I think the extremes of both parties sound silly most of the time.

4. These are my views and not of my employer and blah blah.

Now, let’s get down to business.

You know the whole story of the Chick-Fil A ordeal. I kept quiet about, mostly because stories like this tend to have a short shelf life, and I’m not really into politically charged discussion. That was, until, I saw thousands of people going to Chick-Fil-A yesterday to support the business in the wake of the controversy.

They were supporting the business, they say, to defend Chick-Fil-A’s right to do whatever they’d like with their money, and voice their support for whatever they’d like. They say, they were there to support “freedom.”

Though that may be the case in some instances, I do not believe those people were there to support freedom, but to passive aggressively voice their support against gay marriage under the guise of freedom. Though many will tell me I’m wrong, I don’t believe it’s that big a leap to suggest.

As an aside, it’s kind of funny that they would be there to support Chick-Fil-A’s freedom to take a stand against allowing people to be free (gay marriage), but whatever.

I believe this, because we are not actually free. Freedom is a myth and a legend. It is not reality.

Our freedoms are limited every single day, from small things like not being able to listen to music as loud as we want in our homes, to not being permitted to drive as fast as we’d like. We’re forced to pay taxes (not freedom!). You can’t even skateboard anywhere you want.

We may be more free than many other places in the world, but there are still endless amounts of freedoms we have taken away from us.

If your main concern was to defend the right to free speech and protecting people against loss of freedom, you would not find time in the day to do much else. If you chose to fight for freedom as a reality, rather than just a catch phrase or ideal, it would be a full time job.

What is generally telling is what specific freedoms we choose to lend our support to. Let’s take for example the legalization of marijuana. Though it might not be every case, I’m going to go ahead and suppose that most people who support such a thing actually like marijuana. Again, not all people, but most. Most people who want the right to be able to skateboard in the park are skateboarders.

We pick things to fight for that are close to our hearts.

This brings us to Chick-Fil-A. The people in those parking lots and in those restaurants find one of two issues particularly close to their hears; the food at Chick-Fil-A, or the opposition of gay marriage. The food at Chick-Fil-A is good. It’s real good. But I think it’s probably unreasonable to suggest that although many of the patrons who participated in Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day do enjoy the sandwiches and the waffle fries, that it was the food, and not opposition to gay marriage that brought them there.

Be sure, that people have every single right to voice their support to ban or prevent gay marriage, even though I don’t agree. The problem I have is that when I point this out, I tend to get the same old “you’re a liberal, you don’t care about freedom, Barack Obama blah blah blah.”

I guess I just wish those at Chick-Fil-A to supposedly support freedom, would be more honest about their intentions.

  • John

    Had that exact discussion last night with a friend. She said they were there supporting free speech. Anyone I know that went there yesterday, or coincidentally ” liked” them on Facebook yesterday, were there against gay marriage

  • The One

    I take my son to Chick-Fil-A before his School Of Rock Rehearsals each week. Yesterday sucked, I was stuck in the drive thru line for about 15 minutes. I had no idea it was some special Chick-Fil-A day. I ate carrots today!

  • David Direnzo

    Spike — I hear ya you make a great argument. But here’s the thing I believe caused such a stir — and as a result yesterday Wednesday’s support rallies. If you recall ( you may ) — several in city government officials ( Jim Kenney ) in Philly as one example and there are others in Chicago and Boston, that I believe wanted to see Chick Fil A financially squeezed ( even closed ) as a result of their position — these kinds of government intervention grandstands coming from Philly, Chicago and Boston ( or at least that’s what was hinted at ) was what got people out to Chick Fil A and the overwhelming support you saw Wed 8/1.

    I truly believe if government officials had not weighed in on the political views or comments of a business owner – that this would have never been a story. I don’t think it’s about fighting against gay marriage — I think what has people charged up is government not agreeing with a position of a retail business owner and as a result — threatining to shut down or slow down business at Chick Fil A.

    Bottom line no comments from governments in cities around the US on this issue and I think here in Philly all we’d be discussing today is how everyone feels about Cliff Lee being on waivers.

    Just sayin,,,,

    keep up the good work

    • Spike

      David,

      Good response, and I do understand and agree to an extent.

      I do agree that government officials have no right to use their position to financially squeeze Chick-Fil-A because of their financial contributions to any cause, for any comments they make regarding gay marriage (misled as I may think they are), etc, etc etc… It’s a bad thing. Can’t do it.

      Where I don’t agree is that it’s just the restriction of that freedom that brought people out to Chick-Fil-A. When considering it, I ask myself the following hypothetical question:

      Would those supporters be out at Chick-Fil-A if their contributions to pro-gay rights charities and comments that were pro-gay rights were being used against them financially, politically or otherwise? It’s just a guess, but I’d guess no. I can’t imagine a right-wing radio program going out to rally the troops to support Chick-Fil-A’s right to be pro-gay marriage.

      My problem isn’t their support for Chick-Fil-A. I also don’t have any problem if they want to support Chick-Fil-A because Chick-Fil-A does not support gay marriage. But it’s this notion that it is an unbiased fight for free speech and freedom. Because if it was, then those people have several more rallies to schedule.

      Appreciate the discussion dude.

  • Dre

    xhh

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