So, Glenn Greenwald -a Salon writer that I normally have reservations about even though I’m a liberal (I think he guns after the Obama Administration a bit too much, and doesn’t give the president enough credit), he’s tapped into a concern of mine, when I recently read or heard about folks in government – including mayors and aldermen – working to ban Chick-fil-A from opening more restaurants as a result of its president’s comments about homosexuality.
Now, I know the move from these officials is well-intended, and Boston mayor Thomas Menino’s letter to the president of Chick-fil-A was a heart-warming affirmation of his city’s diversity.
But still, I’m worried…
I’m worried that this is a case of liberals not agreeing with the political views of a private citizen. The restaurant giant’s president, Don Cathy, made sure to let folks know that despite the company’s support of anti-gay politicians, gay folks aren’t discriminated as employees or patrons.
To be honest, I don’t see then, why we should push our elected officials to try and ban these restaurants from opening; instead we should organize and boycott them if we choose to do so.
Now, I won’t go as far as siding with idiots like Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee who cry faux tears over this issue and say that Chick-fil-A is being “bullied.” That’s nonsense – and it demeans and trivializes true victims of bullies – but Palin and Huckabee are trying to rewrite the dialogue as a last ditch effort – you see, they know that their stupid bigotry is starting to look like just that: stupid bigotry – and though they aren’t personally responsible for anti-gay hate, they contribute to it, by normalizing it. But because they’re asshats they’re trying to cover by saying that those who oppose homophobia and call homophobes out, are the bullies – get it? I wonder if they would’ve taken a similar tactic in the 60s and insist that it’s the segregationists that were the victims of bigotry and unfairness.
But, I know, I digress…
Back to Chick-fil-A – I believe Cathy and company can be as stupid as they want to be – they have an inalienable right to be bigoted as long as they follow anti-discrimination laws. But here’s where it gets fun: we as consumers, watchdogs and activists have the same right! So even though I believe that an alderman or a mayor has no place trying to block a Chick-fil-A from opening its doors, residents have a right to picket, demonstrate and cause all kinds of fuss to make having a Chick-fil-A in a certain area unprofitable. We can also turn to our blogs, e-zines, Facebook walls, Twitter accounts, LinkedIn, etc. and let others know just how awful Chick-fil-A is and how ridiculous Cathy’s position is.
Freedom of speech is a great thing, because sometimes being loud and obnoxious gets shit done. I mean look at the Susan G. Koman Foundation snafu and how quickly its dictator, I mean, CEO, Nancy Brinker folded and fired one of its VP, Karen Handel who may have been responsible for the breast cancer charity to “do the wrong thing” and pull funding from Planned Parenthood. Well, money poured into Planned Parenthood, and the Koman Foundation ended up looking like it was run by some rank amateur.
So, my advice to those who think Chick-fil-A stinks? Defend the company’s right to open its doors, but then do your best through activism and peaceful protest to shut them.
Click here to read Greenwald’s article.