Is it a moo point?
Chick-Fil-A earns significant opponents when expressing long-held view
I love Chick-fil-A’s food. I love how the staff answers everything with “My pleasure.” And I love Chick-fil-A sauce. I don’t love how the cows in the commercials and on the billboards appear to be smart enough to skydive, write and try to convince people not to eat beef – yet they can’t spell? It’s cute, but I don’t buy it.
However, Chick-fil-A’s food and marketing ploys aren’t the reasons Chick-fil-A has been recently trending in the Twitter-sphere. Chick-fil-A is being criticized for their support of traditional marriage. Even the Muppets are mad!
“If the 40-year relationship of Bert and Ernie wasn’t enough to convince you, know that the Muppets are officially supporting gay marriage,” said Tony Hicks from the Contra Costa Times. “In the wake of Chick-fil-A declaring its opposition to same sex marriage, Kermit and the gang are the latest in a growing list of Hollywood stars, including “The Office” actor Ed Helms, who are now boycotting the fast food chain.”
Helms is joined by Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino, who was recently quoted as saying “Chick-fil-A doesn’t belong in Boston. You can’t have a business in the city of Boston that discriminates against a population. We’re an open city, we’re a city that’s at the forefront of inclusion.”
What should Dan Cathy, Chick-fil-A president, do about this controversy? Abandon the beliefs of the owners of the privately held company that is widely known as faith-based? It will be interesting to see if the Cathys profess their religious beliefs or tone them down to sell chicken strips and (really good) lemonade.
In a world where no one has secrets – thank you Internet – more and more CEOs and presidents are having their beliefs thrown in their face. In Susan G. Komen’s case, thousands of dollars in donations were lost because Planned Parenthood was eliminated, causing all of the company’s donations to come under scrutiny. That position was surprising to many of its prior supporters, but is Chick-fil-A’s strong, Biblically based, stand against same-sex marriage really a shock?
I’m not agreeing or disagreeing with Cathy and Chick-fil-A, but I am concerned about free speech. It is certainly your right and privilege if you don’t want to eat at Chick-fil-A because its owners are standing firm in their religious convictions.
“But public officials have a responsibility to carry out their ministerial tasks fairly and evenhandedly – and to uphold the principle of free speech – whether or not they like a business executive’s social or political stances,” opined an LA Times editorial.
Also, is Chick-fil-A’s crisis team doing enough in releasing statements such as this quote from its Facebook page:
“Going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena. Chick-fil-A is a family-owned and family-led company serving the communities in which it operates. From the day Truett Cathy started the company, he began applying biblically-based principles to managing his business.”
Chick-fil-A definitely has supporters for its stance. Former presidential candidate and former governor Mike Huckabee is currently trying to organize supporters to eat at one of the 1600 Chick-fil-A’s nationwide to show support. Are you picking a side?
Keep in mind that Chick-fil-A never proclaimed it was against anyone, it simply stated it was for the traditional definition of the family unit. Implications are running wild, but with no claims actually being stated – is it all, as Joey Tribbiani said, a moo point?
What do you think? Will you still eat Chick-fil-A, or begin boycotting it. If the latter, do you also boycott every establishment that doesn’t share your values? Or is it just this particular issue that causes you to be proactive? Please comment below.
- Sarah Funderburk
For your reading pleasure, here are a few additional links: