1 August 2012

The whole Chik Fil A dustup? It's not really about free speech, folks.

Truthfully, I have no problem with the CEO publicly stating he is against same-sex marriage and that he finds any support of it to be from “a deprived mind.” That's his belief, so be it. He has every right to say it, every right to conduct his personal life according to his beliefs. I don't have to agree with it to respect a person's right to voice an opinion.

My problem? Chik Fil A has donated upwards of 5 million dollars to thwart same sex marriage, and actively works against gay rights. That's company money, not money coming out of the pockets of the Cathy family. If it was their own money, it's none of my business. But when they actively use corporate funds to back what is essentially their own religion beliefs, I have a problem with that.

This isn't even on the same plane as advertising that is either pro-gay or anti-gay slanted. Chik Fil Ahas donated money to a certified hate group in its efforts; its management has no issue with firing people whom they deem to be“sinful.” I wonder who gets to hold the moral compass, and how sinfulness is defined.

Yes, it's a privately held company. That doesn't change anything.

When the donated money comes right from the corporate coffers...if I've eaten there, some of that is my money. And I refuse to have one dime of my money used to deny anyone basic human rights and dignity.

When the personal religious belief is corporate policy, it's not free speech; it's propagation of hate. If they want to donate a billion dollars of their own salaries or savings, that I can shrug off. But it's the use of company funds that pushes this from free speech to being completely inappropriate.

I'm not a fan of boycotts; they just don't work. So many people got all butt-hurt over Oreo's rainbow cookie in support of gay pride day on June 25th and were practically frothing at the mouth, swearing they would never eat another Oreo cookie.

Fine. Don't. I get that.

But I'm not sure how many people stopped to think about the bigger picture. Oreo is made by Nabisco, which is owned by Kraft. Give up the Oreos on principal and you'll have to give up a whole bunch of other things.

If it mattered to me, I would. As far as I know, Chik Fil A only owns Chik Fil A, and while I won't actively boycott it...I also doubt I'll make any kind of effort to eat there again.

(And to be fair...I did not agree at all with Boston's mayor saying they didn't want Chik Fil A there and would deny a business license. That's crossing the line. They have every right to exist as a business as long as they follow the laws.)

But no, it's not about free speech. It's about money. My money. Your money. And I dunno about you, but I want my money to fund kindness, not hate.


Cheysuli and gemini said...

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! I think so many of us don't get the mayor's stance--I mean legally I don't think you can do that, unless like my city you have an ordinance that prevents zoning ANY fast food chain (except Starbucks, but then again is that fast food or coffee?).

What I don't understand is the kickback. Without it, everyone would say they are boycotting and then they'd forget (I don't even know where there's a Chick Fil A around here) or not and the company would go on. The irony is that with everyone trying to slam the people who don't want their money to go to that kind of hate group, it reminds us that we shouldn't eat there and also reinforces the idea that Chick Fil A is wrong. Maybe I should stop being offended that they keep arguing?

olrebbie said...

thanks, thump! eloquently said!

Camie's Kitties said...

I completely agree with you. I was not surprised when Mr. Cathy answered the question the way he did. I knew all along that the company was run by a very religious person or family - they are one of the few business in the United States that still close on Sunday's. I know that they do some really great things - such as give every person that works for them a yearly college scholarship if they are attending college, but like you, I will no longer go out of my way to eat there (no matter how much I love their chicken).


Angel and Kirby said...

You always get to the heart of the matter~ Thanks for helping me understand this. I am with you 100%~

Christie Critters said...

Nicely said.

Crazy Cat said...

Nicely said. We do have a Chik-Fil-A kind of sort of near us. I'd only been there once before but I'm not going again. If the owner had used his own personal money then it would be one thing. I just feel sorry for all the employees who are gay.