Gays Fight To Enjoy Shitty Fast Food In Good Conscience, Which Is Impossible

S. Truett Cathy, Chick-fil-A’s Evangelical Southern Baptist CEO

I don’t know if you’ve heard, but apparently Chick-fil-A doesn’t like gay people. In fact, they dislike gay people SO much that they actually donate significant chunks of money to anti-LGBT causes and, when confronted about these donations in a recent interview, Chick-fil-A COO Dan Cathy replied: “guilty as charged.” Guilty as charged!

Oh, but it gets worse! It gets so much worse. See, in a follow-up interview on The Ken Coleman Show, Cathy offered the following:

“I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage. I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.”

“We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that … We want to do anything we possibly can to strengthen families. We are very much committed to that.”

“We need to be more faithful to depend on a God who does love us and wants to have a relationship with us, and wants to give us the desires of our hearts … We intend to stay the course.”

“We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”

Equality Matters reports that between 2003 and 2009, the company donated more than $3 million to anti-gay Christian groups and nearly $2 million in 2010. These groups include scourges of the earth like the Gay Conversion Mega-Camp Company “Exodus International” and “Family Research Council,” a group devoted entirely to driving us crazy. They’ve thrown over a million dollars this year in the direction of the Marriage & Family Foundation, an advocacy group which promotes the idea that marriage is “a lifelong union between one man and one woman, an institution of God and a foundation for civil society.” Their current initiatives are focused on opposing domestic partner benefits, making divorce harder for everybody, and “opposing homosexual behavior as a protected class.”

The response from the LGBT community and their allies has been deafening, and yesterday Chick-fil-A responded to the backlash by volunteering to “leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena.” According to The Los Angeles Times, Chick-fil-A spokesman Dan Perry told the press that “leaving the debate” means “not proactively being engaged in dialogue” about same-sex marriage, but it does not mean that the company will stop donating to anti-gay marriage causes. However, they claim that “the tradition in our restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect – regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender.”

According to a July 9th TIME Magazine article, Chick-fil-A is one of the nation’s fastest-growing retailers and perhaps owes some of its succcess to its notorious religiosity.  The company was founded by  S. Truett Cathy on explicitly “biblical principals,” which include closing on Sundays and “operating debt-free.” They’re also extremely picky about who can operate a store but bankroll almost the entire startup cost for new franchisees and therefore take a much bigger cut of each store’s revenue/profits. It’s a strategy that has made S. Truett Cathy a billionaire. Presently there are 1600 Chick-fil-A stores in the U.S, exceeding $4 billion dollars in sales for 2011. Also, Chick-fil-A maintains vigilant ownership over their brand, recently pulling stunts like suing a Vermont folk artist who was selling screen-printed t-shirts reading “Eat More Kale” (Chick-fil-A’s slogan is “eat mor chick’n”).

The HRC has a pledge you can sign to tell Chick-fil-A to stop targeting LGBT Americans, which seems like a long shot, and they also encourage you to boycott the restaurant, if you haven’t already been doing so. Support is coming in from all over  — Boston Mayor Thomas Menino told the Boston Herald that he won’t let Chick-Fil-A build a store in his city and actor Ed Helms tweeted his decision to stop patronizing Chick-Fil-A.

It is important to stand up and say “this is wrong.” It’s important to attack any perceived cultural acceptance of aggressive anti-gay spending in the corporate sector because that acceptance can corrupt our own friends and family and will empower other bigots. In this economy, it’s more important than ever to ensure that LGBT people feel comfortable not only eating at stores like Chick-fil-A but also applying to work there especially when in many areas, fast food restaurants and big-box retailers are often the only companies hiring. 

But it’s also important to question this cause’s present prominence on the national stage. Is this where queer activist groups should be focusing their attention? On demanding a corporate food chain take back the mean things they said about us and the money they gave to people who say mean things about us? So we can eat their shitty food and die of heart disease? Isn’t this a bit of a lose-lose?

The problematic aspect of the discourse around Chick-fil-A is that it isolates the anti-gay rhetoric and investments as its sole transgression — sign a petition to make him apologize for what he said so we can all go eat chicken sandwiches again! Yeah — not so fast.

2010 campaign donations from food retailer PACs via opensecrets.org

It’s more or less impossible to eat any kind of fast food ethically. It’s not a secret that fast food remains an incredibly lucrative business, and that the corporations who supply food to the stores and the stores themselves spend a lot of money in the political arena to maintain their wealth and dominance, very little of which goes towards anything in your best interest. I mean really, where do we begin?

The food service industry loves Republicans, a party that generally supports the industry’s policies of paying workers minimum wage with few benefits and eschewing nutritional and food safety standards. (Chick-fil-A’s store operators pull in an average of $190,000 a year, its employees — not so much.) Of the nearly five million dollars spent by Food & Beverage industry PACS in the 2010 election, 67% of that went to Republican candidates and 32% to Democrats. (Of course not all Democrats are on our side and not all Republicans are against us, but it’s safe to say that generally, Republicans tend to be against us.) [Full disclosure: I've personally worked for both Darden Restaurants (The Olive Garden) and Brinker International (The Macaroni Grill) and I spent most of my fetal months in McDonalds, where my Mom was a manager. Love it or hate it, this is the way that we live.]

So far in the 2012 election cycle, 73% of Food & Beverage PAC contributions to Federal Candidates have gone to Republicans and this year, the fast food industry has given more money to Mitt Romney’s campaign than to any other candidate.

2012 spending via opensecrets.org

What about Chick-fil-A’s assertion that they “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect – regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender”? While that may seem superficially true, that doesn’t mean people of all beliefs, races, creeds, sexual orientations or genders would feel comfortable in the environment fostered by Chick-fil-A.

A 2007 Forbes article on “The Cult of Chick-fil-A” exposed a company which makes its religious leanings plainly apparent, from a corporate mission to “glorify God” to featuring prayer sessions at corporate retreats and meetings to encouraging franchisees to market their restaurants through church groups. CEO S.Truett Cathy, an evangelical Southern Baptist, told Forbes that “you don’t have to be a Christian to work at Chick-fil-A, but we ask you to base your business on biblical principles because they work.” Furthermore:

They screen prospective operators for their loyalty, wholesome values and willingness to buy into Chick-fil-A’s in-your-face Christian credo, espoused often by Cathy, an evangelical Southern Baptist who says “the Lord has never spoken to me, but I feel Chick-fil-A has been His gift.”

The article also notes that Cathy prefers married workers and that one in three of company operators have attended Christian-based relationship-building retreats offered through Chick-fil-A’s charitable arm, WinShape. Cathy also claimed that he’d be inclined to fire an employee who “has been sinful.” In 2005, Chick-fil-A even distributed religious software from Focus on the Family in its Kid’s meals.

Because Chick-fil-A operates on a franchise system, their stores aren’t always subject to Federal Employee Discrimination laws, and the corporate parent Chick-fil-A has been sued at least 12 times between 1988 and 2007 for employment discrimination, including a 2002 lawsuit from a Muslim franchisee who claims he lost his job for refusing to participate in a prayer session durng training.

Chick-fil-A actively recruits employees from Christian groups, promising employees that “To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that has been entrusted to us and to have a positive influence upon all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.”

Interesting, then, that Chick-fil-A dabbles so carelessly in its treatment of G-d’s creatures such as, you know, CHICKENS. Like other fast food restaurants, Chick-fil-A gets its meat from factory farms, which pump their poultry with chemicals, harvest their animals in appalling conditions and damage the environment.

this is the only picture i could find of a factory farm that i could bear to look at for more than a minute without feeling sick

You’re probably aware that fast food is literally killing us, and the allegedly healthier Chick-fil-A is not exempt from that assessment. One of the main ingredients of Chick-Fil-A’s chicken nuggets is Monosodium Glutamate, a.k.a. MSG, an excitotoxin that can cause severe reactions in certain people and isn’t “good for” anybody. 18 preservatives are among the 100 ingredients in their “fresh” chicken sandwich. Chick-fil-A is one of many restaurants included in a lawsuit from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine for its policy of cooking certain meats at temperatures which cause them to contain the chemical PhIP, a possible carcinogen. For a complete breakdown of the alleged “healthy” factor of their products, check out Food Babe.

not just chicken

So, what do we do with all this information? Well, part of what distinguishes queer politics from mainstream politics is our position outside of the mainstream, a position which enables us to question dominant culture and fight for the rights of all outsiders and disenfranchised or mistreated citizens. The fast food industry is an inexorable element of that dominant culture. For many of us, giving up fast food altogether is impractical and expensive, but it’s silly to act like there’s anything exalted about patronizing fast food restaurants in the first place. If Chick-fil-A does back down from its anti-gay stance, there’s still plenty of issues for it to reckon with, and although I’m ambivalent about anybody’s choice to eat there, I’d be disappointed to see the restaurant applauded by Gay Inc in any context. Fast food will never be ripe for the queering.

Avatar of Riese

Riese is the 32-year-old CEO, CFO and Editor-in-Chief of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, blogger, fictionist, copywriter, video-maker and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York City, and now lives in The Bay Area. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are!

Riese has written 1721 articles for us.

78 Comments

  1. Thumb up 4

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    there are two chik-fil-a’s in my college town, one on uni campus and one in midtown. SO. MANY. QUEERS. work for the on-campus one–even the manager moonlights as a drag queen. #occupy chik-fil-a should be a thing.

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    Ugh. You know what sucks, Riese? Working for a Darden restaurant sucks. Particularly when it’s Longhorn and you’re a vegetarian. I’m gonna have to go with “hate it”, but yeah. This is the way that we live. I hate that these giant chains have so much power, but they do, and they give exactly no fucks about not fucking us over.

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        i just hated how they could give you super-small sections because servers were paid $2.15 an hour so might as well have them all on! but at the mac grill, if it was slow they’d send everybody else home who got paid an actual hourly wage besides the dishwashers, and the manager would cook and the servers had to be their own pantry chef, bartender, busser, host, to-go person, expo, etc., cuz we only got paid $2.65 an hour. but many independently-owned restaurants i worked at were often fucked in even weirder, less reliable ways. it’s hard to find a good one, i guess.

  3. Thumb up 9

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    I don’t eat Chik-fil-a anyway–I don’t like fast food and the one time I ate there I barely ate two bites–so it’s not like I can boycott. But UGH this makes me so mad.

    Like:
    “We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”
    FUCK YOU. I don’t know what I can say to that besides that. Yeah, thank the lord that you can be bigots and discriminate against people. YAY.

  4. Thumb up 6

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    This is sort of an aside, but does anyone know why, doctrinally, many Christians consider the we hate gay people part of Leviticus to be binding, but the keep kosher parts of Leviticus are not? I’ve seriously been wondering this for a while.

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      There are six verses that people pull from, three in the Old Testement and three in the New. Very few people hold anything from Leviticus or other Old Testement laws true today (it’s really only in tiny churches with pastors who didn’t go to any kind of seminary that still preach that). The main arguement is from a couple of Paul’s letters- Romans being the most quoted one.

      This kid does a good job of looking at all six verses and explaining why they don’t mean what people say they mean:

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/matthew-vines/bible-homosexuality_b_1378368.html

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        “it’s really only in tiny churches with pastors who didn’t go to any kind of seminary that still preach that”

        Tiny? Around where I grew up, the non-denominational churches with uneducated pastors were always the ones that were HUGE megachurches with thousands of people in the attendance. It was the mainline Protestant churches that were small.

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        One thing that’s also worth noting about the New Testament prohibitions against homosexuality is that a lot of scholars think there may be some issues with translation – that the anti-gay stuff was really just supposed to condemn particular Hellenistic Greek practices where pubescent or adolescent boys had sex with grown men, but were mistranslated to mean homosexuality in general – as well as the fact that some of the later Epistles (not Romans) are of dubious authenticity to begin with (believed to have been inserted later and attributed to Paul, not actually having been written by Paul).

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      The general rationale given by most evangelicals/fundamentalists is that there are three types of law found in the Old Testament (Hebrew Bible):

      1) Civil (legal stuff for Israel)
      2) Ceremonial (laws regulating worship)
      3) Moral

      To evangelicals/fundamentalists, the first two types no longer apply to Christians (they were fulfilled by/done away with by Jesus), while the third type (moral) are considered still binding. E.g., laws regulating animal sacrifice or what types of food to eat would fall under the first two categories, and no longer apply. (Christians would also refer to Acts 10, which permits the eating of food such as shellfish.) Laws regarding homosexuality, OTOH, would fall under the 3rd category, and are seen as still applicable.

      Whoo-hoo! That Bible college education has actually come in handy for once! Hope that makes sense.

      *Disclaimer: as a semi-agnostic lesbian I don’t agree that there is anything sinful about being gay. I’m just trying to explain the logic behind why Christians still hold to certain Old Testament laws but not others.

        • Thumb up 14

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          You will still see people make the argue that Christians pick and choose which verses are still relevant because it’s still a valid argument. It’s not at all uninformed when you realize these categorizations are just a way to cope with the cognitive dissonance caused by holding competing beliefs and ideas.

          People pick the verses they will follow or disregard based on already existing biases. Racists will say people of color bear the curse of Cain. Misogynists will say women bear the curse of Eve. Homophobes will say gays are going to hell. Egalitarian hippy Christians will say Jesus loves everyone and everyone from Atheists to Zoroastrians will go to heaven. Because they just don’t want to believe anything else.

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          I don’t think it’s fair to compare how liberal Christians supposedly “pick and choose” to how fundamentalists do. Most liberal Christians don’t claim to read the Bible literally (usually metaphorically or allegorically) as fundamentalists do, and they also don’t claim to treat every part of the Bible the same (for example, putting more emphasis in the New Testament than the Old Testament, since the laws of Leviticus etc. are really more supposed to apply to Jews, not Christians). You pretty much HAVE to pick and choose somewhat with the Bible, since it contradicts itself all over the place, starting at the very beginning of Genesis with the two conflicting creation accounts. I don’t see what the problem is with people who are honest about it.

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          I agree with you, GrrrlRomeo. They are making a decision about how to categorise each law, and their categorisation is informed by their prejudices. If they choose to categorise a law as ‘moral’ as opposed to ‘ceremonial,’ they can justify their bigotry. I have read convincing arguments that the laws against same-sex sexual activity were written for ceremonial purposes, not moral. It’s all in the eye of the beholder.

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          Glad to help. :)

          There certainly are arguments – good ones – to be made in favor of the Bible not condemning being gay. “Yeah, well, what about that cotton/poly blend shirt you’re wearing?” isn’t one of them. Deciding which laws still apply isn’t an arbitrary decision; it actually does have a theological basis that Christians have studied, debated, and written about for centuries. This is precisely why those types of arguments tend to fall flat.

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          You may have gone to a Bible college, but I’ve met liberal pastors with advanced degrees from actual *seminaries* who still make the “cotton-poly-blend” argument, because it’s not actually a bullshit argument. Here’s why:

          Who decides which are the “moral” laws vs. the other kinds of laws? The people making that argument do, and thus it’s completely arbitrary. Where is the support for this distinction? What makes what you eat “ceremonial” and who you screw “moral”? In fact, there’s a great deal of scholarship supporting the idea that the anti-homosexuality provision was there because the Israelites’ numbers were down after starving in the desert, and so they needed to have a lot of heterosexual sex to make more babies. (It’s mentioned in the documentary For the Bible Tells Me So.) Which would seem to put it in the “civil” or “ceremonial” categories, if we’re going to be using these categories.

          As GrrlRomeo said, you’re giving way too much legitimacy to something that really is just a way for fundamentalists to wave away cognitive dissonance.

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          Thanks!

          The other thing I forgot to mention is that even if you’re going to separate out the sexual laws as “moral” rather than “ceremonial,” there are other sexual laws that modern Christians don’t follow. Like not being around women when they’re menstruating, or forcing women to marry their rapists. Another law that would seem to fall under the “moral” category based on these “justifications” is the “dash the children upon the rocks” thing (i.e., kill your kids if they disobey you). Again, something that, thankfully, modern Christians don’t follow.

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          Rose:

          Uh, no disagreement from me. I was merely trying to say why they believe that *from their perspective.* Those *are* the common arguments used by fundamentalist types to defend why they pick and choose what they do, the very same arguments that they tend to throw out any time someone brings them up the “but why are you eating pork?” argument. It was precisely the kind of reaction I saw from my old fundy friends recently after Dan Savage’s comments about parts of the Bible being bullshit.

          To *them* (not me) the distinction isn’t arbitrary. That was the point that I (clearly) failed to convey. Yes, it is cognitive dissonance. It’s precisely why I no longer believe the Bible and am agnostic. However, fundamentalist types would not see it that way, and tend to respond the way I did above.

          And, yes, believe me I do know the difference between a fundamentalist Bible college like the one I attended and legit seminaries. That statement was a tongue-in-cheek self-deprecating statement about my worthless education actually coming in handy for once (but also to show that I lived – or tried to live – in that world at one time and know how they think).

          (I also clearly need to check Autostraddle more often, as these comments are a few days old.)

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          Okay, but the problem is that you’re telling people in later comments that the “but you don’t follow Leviticus’s other rules” isn’t a good argument, when it is – you just have to know how to explain it when the fundamentalists try to wave it away with their talking points about “moral vs. ceremonial rules.” And there’s this statement: “Deciding which laws still apply isn’t an arbitrary decision; it actually does have a theological basis that Christians have studied, debated, and written about for centuries.” But with regard to that particular fundamentalist talking point, it’s not true that that’s really based on centuries and centuries of study. It’s a talking point for modern-day Christian fundamentalists and little more. If one looks over the history of the church, which rules in Leviticus are followed and are not have changed a great deal over the years as they’ve passed through the hands of different theologians, often for reasons that have more to do with the culture of that particular time and place than anything else.

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          Wait a second! No one should be making a “cotton-poly” argument. You can mix cotton and polyester fibers all you want. The forbidden fiber blends are when wool and linen get mixed.

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          Also, if you look at the history of the church, a lot of the distinctions that were created between which laws should be followed and which shouldn’t had less to do with a deep understanding of how God would have wanted it to be or how they applied in ancient Israel, and more to do with bringing Christianity in line with the existing cultural mores of the various cultures it passed through (Rome and then medieval Europe and so on and so forth…)

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          Yes, exactly. Which is why Leviticus says men should not cut their hair or beards, while (Romanized) Paul says it is shameful for a man to have long hair like a woman.

  5. Thumb up 1

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    I associate chick-fil-a with some of my earliest memories, and their food is so delicious. I want to cry bitterly everytime I drive by the restaurant by my house.

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    Given that I don’t eat anything that came from an animal (dietary vegan working on going the whole way), I haven’t even stepped foot in a Chick-fil-A in well over a decade (or, for that matter, most fast food chains, as there really isn’t much I can eat there). I guess I now have even more reason to stay away!

  7. Thumb up 2

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    Awesome article. I agree that fast food is a horrible thing, and I go through several attempts to quit every year. One day I will succeed. At least I don’t have to worry about missing Chick-fil-A. I have eaten their food exactly one time, and was not impressed. Also, I wasn’t the one that bought it, which ridiculously makes me feel better.

    They always sponsored the Christian Athletes club at my high school (which was full of people I didn’t care for) so even though it was close to school, I avoided it. I don’t think there is a lot to be gained from fighting this place. I understand why people want to, but I think it’s a losing battle. The only thing I feel like I can do here is continue to not eat at a place that I already dislike.

  8. Thumb up 4

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    Maybe, just maybe, if I keep posting this in my college GSA’s Facebook page, the kids there will finally stop eating at the one on campus. They know how much Chik-Fil-A donates to anti-LGTBQ causes and yet won’t stop eating there. It’s just…literally the most passive agressive and least effort thing I can think of that they could do to try and stand up for their own community, but noooo. It tastes too good.

    On the flip side, I recognize that fast food is pretty bad. I also recognize that a lot of people don’t have a lot of other options. They work long hours, have families, and can’t always afford or don’t have time to prepare home-cooked meals. At this point picking a place to eat is like choosing the lesser of several evils but…argh.

    Excellent article. I will be sharing this.

  9. Thumb up 8

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    Great article. Particularly like that you didn’t end it with “and they’re evil b/c they hate gays” which would have been the obvious thing but took it to the wider issues with fast food per se. Thought-provoking stuff.

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      YES.

      riese i was just coming here to say i am so glad you are the one who ended up writing about chik-fil-a. pretty much everything you said from “But it’s also important to question this cause’s present prominence on the national stage…” onward is so spot-on and so much more interesting than just “wheee these douchebags hate us let’s boycott” and so awesomely researched and thought out and just so typical riese, which is to say fucking fantastic. thanks for putting all this together. this article seriously exceeded my expectations of what an article about chik-fil-a hating gay people could be.

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        aw!

        no really all these comments on this post are so great! i was so annoyed about this story all week and my response to that annoyance was that i was refusing to write it, and then i realized that instead of not writing about it because i was annoyed, i could write about being annoyed by it! and now here we are!

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          I think it’s so important that peope do talk about the wider influence of stories like this. The dominance and power of chains like this is something that I’ve been thinking about more and more recently.
          It’s just so sad that like you said ‘this is how we live’. Eating fresh and good for your conscience is just not always possible but I definitely think I’m going to make more of an effort.
          Thank you so much for this srticle. It’s given me so much to think about.

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          It was a great article, Riese, and asked the kinds of questions we should ask, such as why the media is focusing on this story.

          The worst part for me was that everyone was talking about this. And so many people, who I consider friends, said things to the effect of, well, they may not support gay marriage but their sandwiches are great! Which for me, I don’t know, I found a little disconcerting.

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    THANK YOU FOR THIS ARTICLE. Seriously. I’ve been so frustrated with all this. It’s like yeah, they hate gays, but they also torture animals, enjoy making money off of slowly killing people who eat their food, and all the other shitty stuff that goes along with being a fast food chain. I’m constantly amazed at how people can ignore factory farming as if it doesn’t even exist.

  11. Thumb up 7

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    Chick-fil-A is one of the least diverse restaurant chains ever – spotting a minority working behind a counter at a Chick-fil-A is like a bigfoot sighting! Their homogenous hiring practices, in addition to their problematic stand on gay rights, is also very problematic.

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      Because they’re franchises, they don’t all have the same hiring practices. There are lots of minorities at the three Chick-fil-A restaurants nearest me (South Jersey near Philadelphia). In fact, I would go so far as to say that the majority are nonwhite (and one of them is queer). I’m not trying to say it’s a great company, just that they’re not all as bigoted as the corporate management.

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    This is infuriating. I wish there was more we could do besides sign a petition and boycott…sit ins? I don’t know. Those statements are infuriating and the fact that Mr. Cathy is profiting from his “Christian values” is nauseating. It kills me that people will ignore bigotry and hatred as long as the label “Christian” is attached. Ugh!

    I’ve been pretty naive about the whole Chick-fil-A thing — I guess I figured their only “Christian” standard was the whole closed-on-Sundays thing, so I never thought twice about eating there. I can safely say that I will never be eating there again! Still, as usual, I wish we could do something more.

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      Well, except, try Googling ‘MSG induced obesity’. It’s how they make experimental rats obese in preparation for other experiments: they feed them MSG. There seems to be some evidence that it has the same effects in humans.

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    As a former southerner, I’ll admit that Chick-fil-a sandwiches were my guilty (once in a blue moon) pleasure for quite a while. BUT, I just stumbled upon a recipe for a “Chick-Fil-Gay” sandwich, which is actually pretty good and very similar. Plus, you’ll know where your chicken is coming from! Thanks the article, it’s quite an eye-opener.

    http://www.buzzfeed.com/wedontgiveafrak/chick-fil-gay-sandwich-chick-fil-a-copycat-recipe-2t1y

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    I remember my alma mater had a branch of Chik-fil-A on its campus. I remember this mainly because it (along with the neighboring hamburger place) made the entire building smell like grease, and because a large percentage of its student body identified as GLBT or allies. I also remember being confused as to why there was a branch of Chik-fil-A on campus at all. I remember being highly excited when I got back from summer break and discovered it had closed. I also remember being at another location (near Indianapolis) and the friend I was with commented on how the smell emanating from the restaurant was an indication of the quality of their service and that for that and other reasons no one should eat there.

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    chick fil a was one of those places I heard about from kids in school who traveled out of town on vacations and I was envious and intrigued by their magical fast food experiences

    I miss roy rogers, that chain’s become like the unicorn of fast food though lord knows their politics.

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      There’s exactly ONE Roy Rogers near me, and it’s in a NJ Turnpike rest area, which you can only access from the Turnpike unless you know the secret back way, in which case all you have to do is hop a fence. I’ve yet to do this, but I like knowing that I can.

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    Well Chick-fil-crap, I have a brain so I know better than to eat crap fast food; a heart and conscience that keeps me from eating anything produced under cruelty filled conditions; and a few good taste buds that tell me to eat food that tastes good rather than like processed fat!! So, I wasn’t eating at your crap hole restaurant anyways, it doesn’t take hateful bigotry to keep me out of there!!

    ps: another wonderful reason to be a vegetarian ;)

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    Thanks for bringing this issue to the forefront. It’s been on my mind lately. I’ve just started reading Fast Food Nation (kind of late on the uptake here, but I recommend it to anyone who’s interested in the history behind the industry). After the first three chapters I knew I couldn’t give money to those places without supporting politics with which I don’t agree. It’s really important to be aware of where our money goes when we spend it (and to what ends), and you do a great job illustrating that point.

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    I have so many feelings about this whole issue. I worked for Chick-fil-A during the summers of 2009-2010 and I quit when people on my college campus made me aware of where their money goes. Like, I knew it was a Christian company but it seemed fairly benign because I hadn’t looked into it. I’m fucking appalled now, and I refuse to go there. And I got so much grief from my family for quitting because they cannot understand how wrong it is and why it upsets me. Even though they’re aware that I’m queer. I just. I have feelings and CFA makes me mad and I feel deceived and betrayed. Also my uniform shirt melted in my dryer because that’s how cheap of materials they use. Grah.

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    Also re: “making divorce harder for everybody”

    Geez, I thought this was something that we joked about in pointing out the hypocrisy of people who oppose gay marriage but don’t oppose divorce. But shit – there’s an organization that actually is trying to make divorce harder? So why aren’t more straight people on the anti-Chick-Fil-A bandwagon, too, if that company donates to them? I mean, my life would have been absolutely horrible if my bio parents’ marriage had been forced to be a “lifelong” marriage because Bible-thumping idiots thought so.

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    nope, not a vegetarian either; or a dog-lover (dare you to try to snatch my Lesbo card away)

    Chick-Fil-A was one of my favorite places until I learned about this a few months back – haven’t set foot in there since. v sad.

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