[The following was originally posted on 3 February 2011. I think it most appropriate and timely to post it again at this time.]
Here’s an idea that will help the economy and inspire you with a renewed sense of hope. Patronize your local Chick-Fil-A. In so doing, you will also be driving left-wing hate-mongers and smear merchants nuts.
Chick-Fil-A is an American success story. Founded by Georgian entrepreneur Truett Cathy in 1946, the family-owned chicken-sandwich chain is one of the country’s largest fast-food businesses. It employs some 50,000 workers across the country at 1,500 outlets in nearly 40 states and the District of Columbia. The company generates more than $2 billion in revenues and serves millions of happy customers with trademark Southern hospitality.
So, what’s the problem? Well, Chick-Fil-A is run by devout Christians who believe in strong marriages, devoted families, and the highest standards of character for their workers. The restaurant chain’s official corporate mission is to “glorify God” and “enrich the lives of everyone we touch.” The company’s community service initiatives, funded through its WinShape Foundation, support foster care, scholarship, summer camp, and marriage enrichment programs. On Sunday, all Chick-Fil-A stores close so workers can spend the day at worship and rest.
For the Left, these Biblically-based corporate principles constitute high social justice crimes and misdemeanors. Democrats are always ready to invoke religion to support their big government, taxpayer-funded initiatives (Obamacare, illegal alien amnesty, increased education spending, and FCC regulatory expansion, for starters).
But when an independent company – thriving on its own merits in the market place — wears its soul on its sleeve, suddenly it’s a theocratic crisis.
Over the past month, several progressive activist blogs have waged an ugly war against Chick-Fil-A. The company’s alleged atrocity: One of its independent outlets in Pennsylvania donated some sandwiches and brownies to a marriage seminar run by the Pennsylvania Family Institute, which happens to oppose same-sex marriage.
In the name of tolerance, the anti-Chick-Fil-A hawks sneered at the company’s main product as “Jesus Chicken,” derided its no-Sunday work policy, and attacked its operators as “anti-gay.” Michael Jones, who describes himself as having “worked in the field of human rights communications for a decade, most recently for Harvard Law School,” launched an online petition drive at http://www.change.org “demanding” that the company disavow “extreme anti-gay groups.” Facebook users dutifully organized witch hunt drives against the company on college campuses.
Over the weekend, New York Times reporter Kim Severson gave the Chick-Fil-A bashers a coveted Sunday A-section megaphone – repeatedly parroting the “Chick-Fil-A is anti-gay” slur and raising fears of “evangelical Christianity’s muscle flexing” with only the thinnest veneer of journalistic objectivity. Severson, you see, is an openly gay advocate of same-sex marriage equality herself and the former vice-president of the identity politics-mongering National Gay and Lesbian Journalists Association. In a bitter op-ed on gay marriage laws not changing quickly enough, she asserted: “I don’t want the crumbs. I want the whole cake.” Severson has voiced complaints about her social and economic status as an unwed lesbian with a partner and child in several media publications.
I believe my experience at Chick-Fil-A today was pretty typical. At the table across from me, a man and a woman discussed last week’s Sunday School lesson. Near the front window, a nursing student studied her medical books while sipping a Coke. The store manager rushed to assist a young mother with her two toddlers in a stroller, escorting them out the door and to their car. Meanwhile, a smiling associate offered to refill my drink as I finished my meal and prepared to leave. She was new in town. Her husband had been transferred and she had to leave her job at a Chick-Fil-A in Richmond. But she was ecstatic about having the opportunity to continue with the company in her new place of residence.
It is no wonder that Chick-Fil-A would see it as nothing but normal to support organizations committed to values and principles that are, after all, normal. To dine at Chick-Fil-A is to be witness to a parade of simple, common decency. That such a thing is an offense to the very people who now lecture us about the need for “civility” is a glaring illustration of the hypocrisy, moral bankruptcy, and utter reprobation of the vile activists of the perverted Left.