About Chick-Fil-A

Chick-Fil-A has been in the news lately for its anti-gay positions, its contributions to anti-gay causes, and its CEO’s outspoken opposition to marriage equality. None of this is really new, but sometimes the news follows its own course.

A few weeks ago, Matt and I visited his parents in the vicinity of Chattanooga, Tennessee. As we usually do when we visit Matt’s parents, we had lunch one afternoon at Chick-Fil-A. Matt really likes the taste of Chick-Fil-A, and they don’t have it in New York (except, for some reason, at NYU).

I’m not really a fan of fast food, for health, environmental, and philosophical reasons, so going to Chick-Fil-A is doubly problematic for me. But I never feel comfortable speaking up when we stop for lunch there. Matt’s parents are Republicans and I’m always afraid I’ll come off as the strident liberal I am, and I don’t want to “rock the boat.” For all I know, they don’t even know about Chick-Fil-A’s anti-gay positions. And I tell myself it’s not like our few dollars spent on lunch are going to make that big a difference. But yes, that’s rationalizing.

So I still feel bad about it. At least it only happens once a year or so. Maybe next time I’ll actually say something.

8 thoughts on “About Chick-Fil-A

  1. What if you just ask Matt to talk to them? That seems more appropriate than you having to stand up to his parents. I don’t think it’s necessarily a Republican thing, though. Republicans don’t have to support an anti-gay company.

    What you’re saying about it not mattering is like people thinking it doesn’t matter if you vote. It does matter. But more importantly I wouldn’t want my money, something I work hard for, to go to someone who’s trying to undermine my rights. It’s not really about hurting them, it’s more about just personally not being one of the people that supports them.

    Also, have you heard of Chick-Fil-Gay? This lady recreated the Chick-Fil-A recipe so people who don’t support them but love their sandwiches can just make their own:

  2. Yeah but that’s not fair to you. They’re his family and you’re hanging out with them because you’re with him. He doesn’t have to say it’s just you that has a problem with going there, and if you don’t want to go there then as your partner he already shouldn’t want to take you somewhere you don’t want to go. And if he just mentions it ahead of time then you don’t have to feel like a kill-joy if they want to go there in the moment.

    But why doesn’t Matt have a problem with eating there?? Your money is going directly into those people’s bank accounts. It’s not like they just have a bad company policy for PR, they’re giving huge chunks of money to support legislation that treats gay people as second-class citizens.

  3. I get Bart’s and Homer’s point, but unless you want the entire South boycotting companies that donate to liberal causes, be they pro-choice, pro-environment, whatever, I think it’s at least worth considering whether shopping via political action is the best way to avoid a potentially yummy chicken sandwich that Matt enjoys. (For the record, no Chick-Fil-A near me, so I can’t comment on the taste.) And honestly, anyone with an Apple product has supported a company that actually is somewhat connected to worker suicides… shopping at Target has to be off the list for many liberals… and of course Wal-Mart…. Cracker Barrel…. used to be that any car with a part made by Magna International (read: almost all cars) probably should have been off the list…. you get the idea.

    Personally, I’d just donate the same amount you sent on the sandwich to a group you support, and keep the family peace. There might be better ways to make the point. But if someone IS going to speak up to the parents, it probably ought to be Matt.

  4. I am totally fine if people boycott whatever companies they want to. For example, if the Million Moms want to boycott JC Penney, so be it.

    We make statements by where we choose to spend our dollars. I would never eat at a Cracker Barrel if I had the opportunity. Sometimes you have to pick your battles, and I am fine with trying not to patronize anti-gay companies.

  5. “I get Bart’s and Homer’s point”… first time that’s ever happened to me. :)

    I think it’s defeatist to say you’d have to boycott everything. It’s one thing to shop at places where the CEOs are known to be Republican and/or have anti-gay religious views, and even in those cases I would rather not buy from those companies, but I know sometimes I do/have to/resign to. But it’s another case when those CEOs turn around and give multiple millions of dollars just to stop gay marriage and have no apologies for it. That’s Where Chic-Fil-A is at and I can’t imagine why any gay person would want to support them.

    Also the Apple thing is silly. Do you think the working conditions are better at Sony, Toshiba, Panasonic, etc.? Steve Jobs was obsessed about even the machines in Apple factories being well-designed and spic and span. The suicide rates have been higher at other factories. People are picking on Apple because they’re on top right now, when we should be talking about the working conditions of ALL factories in China and other countries.