With all the attention being given to Chick-Fil-A and their stance against gay marriage and the backlash they are getting, it raises one important question. Are we now obligated to know the political leanings of the businesses we frequent? I’m sure most people haven’t given it a second thought. Until now.
If the owners of Chick-Fil-A want to express their religious beliefs, that’s fine. And if people who disagree with their views want to avoid doing business with them, that’s fine, too.
I have been a strong supporter of gay rights so I don’t necessarily want to give Chick-Fil-A my money. But it’s easy for me. I live in California and I don’t even know if they have any restaurants out here. Boycotting them is easy because I’ve never even seen a Chick-Fil-A restaurant let alone eaten in one.
But what if I found out that a place that I love, say, In-N-Out Burger, gave to organizations that were politically opposed to my way of thinking? Would I then have to stop eating there? For those that are politically and socially active this may be a question that they will have to ask themselves on a regular basis.
How have we gotten to the point where even a chicken sandwich can be used for political gain? I know we are in an election year and both sides are trying to energize their base so they will turn out and vote but this is going a bit too far. All of a sudden lunch has become a political statement.
Rahm Emanuel and Thomas Menino, the mayors of Chicago and Boston, respectively, have already made statements that Chick-Fil-A is not welcome in their cities. This is the first time that I can recall any politician saying they do not want business to come to their town. I guess in an election year making a symbolic stance is more important than bringing jobs to a community.
I’m concerned that we are heading to a point where we will have conservative restaurants and liberal restaurants, pro-life and pro-choice retail stores. It’s just another way to divide us as a nation.
On the surface it seems kind of silly to be talking about a fast food restaurant and its stance on a civil rights issue but that’s where we are. It won’t be long before we are asking our barber or mechanic what their views on abortion or immigration are.
Is that the kind of world we want to live in?
If we’re not careful, soon every bit of our lives will be politicized and we will be more segregated than ever before. I hope that never happens. My wish is that we get to a point in this country where a sandwich is just a sandwich.