Posted on August 01, 2012 in Politics
[Update: Several folks have corrected me on Dan Cathy being Chick-Fil-A's President and COO, not the CEO as I originally wrote. Thanks to all who pointed this out to me. I have corrected the post.]
So today I had lunch with some friends and former co-workers at Chick-Fil-A in Cranberry Township, PA. Today, if you don't know, has been dubbed "Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day". Its in response to various politicians such as Boston's and Chicago's Mayors and other official idiots criticizing a company that makes chicken sandwiches and its President and COO because said President/COO (hereafter simply referred to as COO) gave his opinion on homosexual so-called marriage. But the real problem is when these various politicians came out, pun intended, and said that the company shouldn't bother expanding in their regions because they might just find it hard to get the various permits and so forth. In effect, these politicians were convicting the COO and company of thoughtcrime and political incorrectness because of the COO stating his belief and bringing official government sanctions against them.
Now I know of plenty of other COOs and companies that take public stands on various issues that would be considered on the other side of the spectrum from Chick-Fil-A's COO, Dan Cathy... such as Target, Amazon and Progressive Insurance to name just a few. I don't see the lefty politicians criticizing them for making political statements. I also don't see the conservative politicians criticizing these companies that are taking stands they oppose. Because they know better. Its wrong. Its unconstitutional. Political incorrectness is not a crime. And the idea that we would have politicians attempting to institute Orwell's concept of thoughtcrime in this country is something that should be fought tooth and nail, hammer and claw.
Most of the time, when I hear about this or that boycott or anti-boycott of some company I usually ignore it because its just being promoted by this or that angry group from the left or right and I don't care. In fact, most of the time it just annoys me. If this or that company, COO or celebrity mouths off about their favorite causes I tend to tune it out. I don't care what some celebrity or COO thinks about some issue and I tune them out. If they publicly give money to support some cause it may cause me to modify my choices. But when I hear about organized boycotts or anti-boycotts, I tend to ignore them. I'm not a bandwagon jumper-onner. Just further publicize the causes they support and let people make up their own minds without all the boycott nonsense (or anti-boycott nonsense).
But this time was different. This was government officials bringing the weight of their offices to bear. Threatening government action. Because of someone's belief. Fighting back against that is a bandwagon I am forced to jump on and ride it for all its worth. And yes, most of those politicians have pulled back from their rhetoric because they've been warned that they can't actually follow through with it (publicly, anyway) and that it looks real bad.
And yes, my traveling a little out of my way to eat a chicken sandwich accomplished nothing. Except one more little ounce of energy to the poke in the eye being delivered to the idiots in public office who mouthed off.
Today's showing of public support for Chick-Fil-A against this kind of abusive government force should confirm for these idiots in office that the public won't have it.
I admit, I was naive. When I asked my friends what time to meet them there and they said 11 AM, I thought, "wow, that's early. I wonder why they want to be there so early?" And then I had some business come up that I had to attend to so I wasn't going to actually get there until 11:20 AM. Then I realized why they wanted to get there early.
Click here to see the Chick-Fil-A I ate at in Google Maps.
Note the roads around the restaurant... Westinghouse Drive, Cranberry Woods Drive and Longtree Way. All of them were gridlocked with cars when I arrived and when I left. The Chick-Fil-A parking lot was full. I had to park next door in Smokey Bones' lot. The drive-through line wound all the way around the building. The cars on the streets I mentioned were gridlocked because the drive-through line stretched out to Westinghouse Drive preventing more cars from getting in the parking lot and drive-through line from Chick-Fil-A's main parking lot entrance. Inside, the restaurant was packed. All the tables and booths were occupied. People were standing around waiting for seats. The lines to order food stretched across the building inside, out the doors and down the sides of the building.
I posted on Twitter about the size of the crowd with some pics and got a reply from a reporter in Washington DC wanting to know where I was. He was collecting reports from Chick-Fil-A's across the country. Then I started seeing reports from all over the country about how packed every Chick-Fil-A was.
This is a good sign. Its not about how important a company Chick-Fil-A is, its not about how good their food is. Honestly, I had never eaten at a Chick-Fil-A before. There are not a lot of them in my area. Its not even so much about the issue that Dan Cathy opined upon. Its about the response of certain government officials that publicly disagreed and threatened the company over a political stance. I still have hope for limited government and freedom of speech (and thought) in this country when I see this kind of reaction by the people to this kind of over-reaching, overbearing and over-threatening kind of government coercion. Hopefully I will continue to see this kind of reaction in response to the HHS mandate requiring all health care plans to provide contraceptives and abortifacients and businesses and religous organizations to pay for them. Hopefully I will continue to see this kind of response every time government oversteps its bounds. Hopefully, the people of this country will continue to slap them down, shove them back within their bounds and them laugh at them... Yes, laugh at them... just to show our contempt for their statist delusions.
Click on the thumbnails below to see the pics my buddy Todd and I took at the Cranberry Township Chick-Fil-A between 11:30 AM and 12:00 PM.
I may go to another Chick-Fil-A this evening for supper just because the government deserves every little tiny poke-in-the-eye we can give it.
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