Responding to Chick-fil-A Antagonist

I hesitated to venture into the Chick-fil-A skirmish, but it seems as though the discussion will continue for a while, so here I go.

A few preliminary thoughts:

Chick-fil-A makes amazing food. Healthy? No. Delicious? Yes. Enough said.

In addition to food, Chick-fil-A does a lot of other great things. This includes business leadership training, college scholarships, 11 foster care homes, many local charities and educational toys in their kids meals!

While those things may be true, let’s recognize that…

Christians have unfairly targeted homosexuals. It’s always easier to focus on other people’s sin and ignore your own. This is why Jesus said we should notice the log in our own eye before we point out the speck in someone else’s eye. Christians often ignore their own more “acceptable” sins of gluttony (e.g. fat pastors), pride, greed, etc.

Christians have failed to love homosexuals as Jesus commanded. All human beings are made in the image of God and therefore have immense worth. Because of this, they are worthy of being loved, regardless of their morality. There are many followers of Jesus who need to do a heart check because of their lack of love.

Having said those things, here is my response to Chick-fil-A antagonist:

1. Your accusations of hate are hateful.

Dan’s Cathy’s original message has been greatly distorted. His words are far less hateful than what many are implying. He said Chick-fil-A supports the “biblical definition of a family.” Not very hateful.

While some gay marriage proponents have responded with civil-discourse, many have responded with the same mean-spirited “hate speech” they falsely accuse Cathy of. It is greatly inconsistent (dare we say hypocritical) to hatefully call others hateful.

2. Your tolerance is intolerant.

The definition of tolerance is “a fair, objective, and permissive attitude toward opinions and practices that differ from one’s own.”

The problem with your tolerance is that while you want people to be tolerant of you, you refuse to be tolerant of others. If you’re going to raise the banner of tolerance, it has to go both ways.

3. Your allegation of discrimination is discriminating.

Just like people, companies have values. Some value ecology. Some value innovation. Some value greed. Some value the “traditional family.” You don’t have to agree with them and you are not obligated to buy their product or to use their service. That’s called discretion.

Discrimination is different.

When the mayors of Boston and Chicago vow to not to allow Chick-fil-A in their cities, that is discriminatory. Cities/mayors can’t prevent or throw-out businesses from a city when their values differ from those of a company. What if a conservative mayor were to ban pro-homosexual companies from their city? Again… greatly inconsistent.

4. Your accusations of narrow-mindedness are narrow-minded.

Chick-fil-A antagonist say that Cathy’s statements are a reflection of a person who has yet to discover the truth, that he is speaking from ignorance or basing his opinion on an archaic book (the Bible) that no longer has relevance in modern society.

The problem with such a view is that it assumes you have found perfect knowledge. When I think I have perfect knowledge, anyone who disagrees with what I think, therefore, has imperfect knowledge. That’s a good definition of being narrow-minded.

Tim Keller says it well, “To reject the Bible as regressive is to assume that you have now arrived at the ultimate historic moment, from which all that is regressive and progressive can be discerned. That belief is surely as narrow and exclusive as the views in the Bible you regard as offensive.”

Those are my thoughts. What are yours?

  • Willis

    Well said.

  • T. Blair

    Donovan, WOW!  I completely agree with everything you said.  You have written this very well; very impressive.  I wish people could grasp this; we all have different views, values, beliefs.  But it always seems to be when a person has an opinion that differs from the more liberal opinion, we are haters.  And you nailed it when you said that in people’s effort to express their dislike of a conservative’s opinion, they use anger, hate, and judgement to retaliate when anger, hate, and judgement, of course, is what they (liberals) are strongly against.  This comes up in my discussions with family, friends, etc.  all the time.  If they don’t agree with me, it is free speech.  If I don’t agree with them, it is hate.

  • Sandi

    Donovan, you said it perfectly…. I am really tired of people who profess to be Chrisitans, but who talk like haters. Thanks for the comments.

  • David R Yonko

    It’s refreshing that Dan Cathy can take a stand for Christianity and the Bible in this age of political correctness. As followers of Jesus Christ we should base our lives, choices and decisions on the Bible. It’s not hateful to stand up for God’s truth. As Christian’s we are to love the sinner and pray for them while standing up for God’s truths (found in the Bible).

  • YvonneDonaldson

    Well said. 

  • RSK

    I understand how frightening this topic might be, BUT… When a person is discovering their homosexual tendencies, or an old coach discovering he likes young boys, or a pimp discovering his power to gather vulnerable girls as sex slaves, or any other sexual deviancy that forever steals innocence from our youth, I’m sorry, but this is not the same as gluttony.  

    • dpchristian

      I agree. Different sins do have different consequences. Not everybody is hurt in the same way by sin. Not all sins have as significant affect on others. So no, they are not all the same.
      However, even “small’ sins defy God. Even less consequential sins are evil and worthy of God’s wrath. God wants us to feel like every sin, from the smallest to the greatest, is against His Holiness and not just against people and their consequences.
      In that sense every sin is as John Piper says, “infinitely heinous.”
      So we have to say that when it comes to God being defiled in my heart, I am committing an infinite evil against him regardless of whether it is small or big.

    • dpchristian

      One more thought in terms of the seriousness of gluttony in terms of consequence. Gluttony could be simply defined as over-indulgence or over-consumption. It is when a person takes more for themselves than what they need. In terms of heart, it describes a person who is primarily concerned with self-gratification and having their own needs met. This is always at the expense of others.

      If we think of gluttony as “I ate too much ice cream.” we’ve missed the point. Today, all around the world, people are dying because they don’t have food, clean water, etc. 6 million children die each year due to hunger. Undernourishment affect 925 million people, 14% of the worlds population. This is happening in a world where Americans face an obesity epidemic. Perhaps we could call this a gluttony epidemic. If Christians struggled less with the sin of gluttony, more people would be able to live. Nothing steals the innocence of youth quite like hunger, starvation and death.
      Consider the warning from Scripture:”For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink…” Then they will say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty… and did not help? Then he will answer, saying, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Matthew 25:42-46

      • RSK

        Your original blog gave example of a fat pastor as gluttony. By the time it took you to explain that away in your above reply, more of our youth have fallen victim to a sexual predator. I don’t know you very well or where you were raised, but on average in the U.S. 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys are sexually abused before they reach 18 years of age. From this pool of victims comes vulnerable children more likely to fall prey to nice articulate homosexuals that subtly groom the confused to partake in their deviant lifestyle. So where do these victims turn? To churches where the new form of evangelism is alive and well – where the pastor straddles the fence on social issues, pleasing many, solving nothing, but nicely filling the pews? If this is off base, just look at the comments to your blog that are difficult to understand as to whether they are for or against. Now imagine confusion that a young person must feel who last night was propositioned by a homosexual, then made it to your church today to get answers. Imagine that youth seeing the christian homosexual in your church feeling quite comfortable being there without a call to change coming from the pulpit. If you believe this is still off base, ask a victim of a sexual deviant – there is yet another new one to be found in the time it took to read this comment.      

        • Pmpace777

           Pedophilia and homosexuality are completely different!

          • Rsope

            Where do we draw the line on deviant sexual behavior? I think God’s written word makes His line very clear….societal acceptance doesn’t change His line at all..

  • Jheinemann1

    Well said.  I couldn’t have been more articulate or agree with you more.

  • Michelle

    EXCELLENT!! Thank you for more than adequately articulating the sentiments of many.

  • Azbandit

    I think God is supposed to do the judging not us.

    • dpchristian

      Good thing nobody said anything about judging then.

  • Allie1230

    I am Christian, and I am FAR from perfect, hence why I need Christ in the first place.  Do I judge? Of course, because I am human, but I try not do…but I fail because I am HUMAN.  Being Christian doesn’t make me perfect, and I do not claim to be.  I do not point out homosexuality as a sin, because so are a host of other things I do every day.  Sin is sin, and isn’t ranked on one sin being better or worse than another sin.  It is all weighed the same.  It is sin.  That being said – I support Cathy’s opinion and share his beliefs.  I can say that because Cathy never even mentioned homosexuals, gay marriage, or any anti-gay propaganda.  I support traditional family values, but if gay people want in on marriage, go for it.  I honestly don’t care.  I love them just as I do anyone else and think they have the right to be equally miserable as any other married couple.  What irritates the hell out of me is the words that have been put in Cathy’s mouth and the ridiculous intolerance that is being spewed by people who preach tolerance.  If tolerance were a religion, how many damn hypocrites would there be?

    • dpchristian

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Though we might not agree on everything (which is okay) I think you understand much of what I’m trying to say.

  • Aliit Vodeson

    I think Christians have lost sight of the reason behind being against same-sex marriage. The leaders in the church have been blinded by hatred and aren’t trusting God to work things out. Two verses that have been forgotten by the church are Mark 12:31 and Romans 3:23.

    Mark 12:31 – You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater
    Romans 3:23 – for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God

  • Peter Blackshaw

    While it may appear that many Christians are “anti-gay”, its really not the issue at all. Living in a city that has a large percentage of Gays, here is an observation. The push is to accept the lifestyle not as sinful but as God sanctioned. While discussing this with a Gay friend, the comment “I was born Gay” came up. The biblical truth is that we were ALL born into sin with inclinations to one type or another and that is why we need a Savior. When I sin, mess up, or miss the mark, I try not to blame God. I try to acknowledge the mistake or wrong behavior, appreciate the forgiveness of God and pray for grace to avoid it in the future. Remember what Adam said as he responded to God’s question, “The woman YOU gave me caused me to eat of the fruit” That excuse didnt work then, and it dosen’t work now. As the scripture says, Come, Let us reason together, though your sins be as scarlet…………

  • ME!

    Im not anti gay Im just pro Jesus!!

  • kari g

    very well written. love your perspective. thanks for sharing.

    • dpchristian

      Thank you!

  • blake spencer

    You can’t really know what it’s like to feel hated until you are. Of course you don’t sense the “hatred”! The words aren’t targeted at you. Until you are personally the target of policies, theology and speech that foster an environment for judgment and hate…I suppose you will continue to downplay words and actions such as the ones spoken by Mr. Cathy.

    Sure….Mr. Cathy didn’t speak anything vulgar, just as I suppose it didn’t sound vulgar in another American story when store owners said they were upholding “traditional/Biblical/American values” in support of segregation. Wasn’t it also an act of freedom and free speech for some to post signs, “Whites Only”?

    Oh, I know as a gay man I can eat chicken with the “cows” and I can even work in what I consider to be an awesome restaurant! But what I can’t swallow are the millions of dollars being sent to organizations targeted to demean, devalue, and disregard gay folks. Do you understand that words and actions designed to demean, devalue and disregard gay folks can and does foster an environment where gay’s are killed at the hands of hatred. Suicide is a whole other topic. Read the news and you will encounter their stories.

    Be the target for one day and then come back and share your thoughts.

    P.S. There is quite a lot of Biblical scholarship available these days to suggest the Bible doesn’t share the same condemnation so many Christians in our country uphold. There is a lot to read….some of it written by those who are straight and who lived most of their lives as Evangelical Conservatives. There is a lot to read….but it takes time to read and so many people just will not take the time to read.

    Be the target for one day and then come back and share your thoughts.