Standing on a Box of Soap

Quote: “Going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena,” Chik-fil-A said in a statement last week.
Yeah….that’s kind of closing the barn door after your chickens escaped.  Last night I went to the new Chik-fil-A that opened by my house.  The service was friendly, the food good, the place packed.  But, I felt uncomfortable.  Because, suddenly, a chicken patty smacked between two buns has turned into a political statement. 

During an interview on The Ken Coleman radio show, Mr. Dan Cathy, president of Chik-fil-A, agreed to the statement that he opposes gay marriage because of Biblical principles.  And, there it is in First Corinthians and in First Timothy, letters written by the apostle Paul and then translated from Greek to English.  But Mr. Cathy wasn’t speaking for himself, he spoke for his entire company when he said, “We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives.”


In defense of Mr. Cathy, I don’t think he realized what was about to happen.  How the gay community, those that support gay marriage, and those that have gay loved ones would be hurt and offended by his personal stand made in a very public forum.   I don’t know if he realized how divisive his comment was – how he is marginalizing part of our population.  Maybe he did, but felt it was the right thing to do.

When I was in-patient at Hopkins, Chik-fil-A came to the hospital and provided lunch for EVERY PATIENT AND PARENT in the entire children’s center.  A beautiful and generous gift.  One I will always remember.  Books and other kids’ meal toys are educational.  The franchises have a reputation for being incredibly welcoming and helpful.  Sunday the stores are all closed in observance of Sabbath. 

But there is a feeling of betrayal from those who support gay-marriage because Mr. Cathy didn’t just speak about his personal feelings.  He used a very public soapbox to speak for the entire company and he uses company funds to promote his agenda.  He comes across as judgmental and controlling.  Americans don’t like to be told what to do.  We hold onto our FREE CHOICE like a hedgehog with a mealworm (i.e. tightly). 

It is certainly his right as the owner of a private company to disperse funds and his opinions are protected under the First Amendment.  I don’t know WHAT the mayors of Boston, Chicago, and San Fran were thinking with their outrageous reactions. They look foolish as they now scramble to ‘clarify their position’ and otherwise back down.  Corporate sponsors are also normal in our world and the logo shows the brand.  Then the public will either go or not go to the restaurant/business.  In America we all get to say our piece.

I know several people are proud of Mr. Cathy for taking a stand – and an unpopular one.  Christians want to support him because he’s championing the word of God.  But what’s really happened is now an “us vs. them” mentality.  Us being people who love Christ and Them being the others… those who aren’t married to their first wives…those who are gay…those who don’t have a traditional family unit.  And he doesn’t get to speak for me, because I believe that Jesus Christ, son of God, came to bring people to the kingdom of heaven regardless of race, background, and sexual orientation.

There is a separation of church and state for a reason.   Remember when the masses wanted to make Jesus a king?  John 6:15. 

“Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself alone.”

Jesus’s purpose was more important than the fleeting overthrow of a single government, or the passing fad of cultural icon, or the futility of changing men and women from the outside in.  And that is what Mr. Cathy tried to do.  To impose his personal beliefs onto believers and non-believers alike.  To create public policy and force a Christian agenda through a set of laws.  That’s never going to win people to Christ.  Never.