Monday, August 6, 2012

The thing about Chick-Fil-A

So here’s the thing about Chick-Fil-A. Yes, they are owned by a bigoted idiot. Yes, I would never eat there. However, Dan Cathy, Chick-Fil-A’s owner, is well within his rights to have an opinion and to state that opinion. And I can even applaud him for having the balls to come out and give that opinion publicly, even if I disagree vehemently with the strength of a thousand suns. He has every right to own a business. And as long as that business doesn’t violate any laws (which is debatable as of now), his business is all his to do with as he sees fit. If Cathy wants to be a bigot, that is certainly his right as an American. And all the people who supported Chick-Fil-A last Friday are completely entitled to their bigoted opinions, too.

More power to ‘em. OK, well, actually, no. I hope not.

But here’s the thing. I have the same First Amendment rights as Cathy does. So that means it’s also my right to tell anyone who will listen that Cathy is a bigot.

And if you aren’t sure what a bigot is, then here’s Merriam Webster’s definition (caps direct from M-W):
a person who is OBSTINATELY or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance

So he doesn’t have to discriminate against the LGBT community to be a bigot. He only has to regard them with hatred and intolerance.

So, as I was saying. It’s my right to not patronize Chick-Fil-A if its owner’s politics bother me. It’s my right to not patronize Chick-Fil-A if I don’t agree with the way they may spend their profits generated by my business.

For years, I refused to buy Dominos Pizza, much to the dismay of my teenage boys. Under their previous ownership, they were heavy donators to the Right to Life Foundation and other anti-choice groups that live to suppress the rights of women in our country and abroad.

Similarly, I recently cancelled my subscription to Angie’s List, who is still advertising on Rush Limbaugh’s show. The obstinately refuse to remove their sponsorship. Ironically, Angie’s List is run by a woman who tries to make it easier for homeowners to find reliable servicepeople (a task that usually falls to the woman within the household). And BTW, they made it virtually impossible to cancel my subscription – you can’t do it online. You have to call and go through a customer service rep who will at first refuse to refund you any money for the unused portion of your subscription. Keep at it! I finally got him to delete my account & refund my remaining subscription. Why must companies make it so damned difficult to stop receiving their services? I get the whole “We want a chance to convince you otherwise” thing, but gah! This made me more determined than ever that even if Angie’s List were to stop advertising on the Rush Limbaugh show, I would never do business with them ever again anyway.

But I digress.

My point is this: It violates nobody’s first, second, third, or 570th Amendment rights or anything that came before the Amendments if Dan Cathy is a bigot. It just makes Dan Cathy a bigot (and an asshole). Similarly, it violates nobody’s first, second, third, or 571st Amendment rights or anything that came before the Amendments if I choose not to give Dan Cathy or any other organization a dime of my hard earned money.

So here’s the thing. The great thing about our country. We get to spend our expendable income however we see fit. And yay for us! Capitalism lives and breathes in America, regardless of what Fox News would have you believe.

Just because I don’t agree with someone’s point of view doesn’t make them a bad person, except in the case of Cathy, who thinks that gay people are an abomination when in fact he’s the abomination, and oh, in the case of Fox News because they constantly lie to the people about what’s happening in America and the rest of the world, and oh, these people who are the ultimate in douchebaggery and who are the prime example of why education is so damned important. Jeez, people. Learn grammar and how to spell! Oops, off on a tangent again. Where was I? Oh yes. I can disagree with you and still respect your thoughtful approach and intelligence on any particular topic. I disagree with people all the time, and I don’t boycott their businesses. BUT, and a mighty big but it is…, I also have the right to say out loud if I think you’re a total douchebag who deserves to only sell his product to other douchebags. In case that was too subtle, yes, I just called Dan Cathy a douchebag.

You are entitled to your opinions. And I’m entitled to mine. And we’re both entitled to shout them from the rooftops. Yay America! Lest you get overly cocky, I’ve been told my voice is very loud. And if you ask my kids, I’m sure they’d tell you that I’m a super duper most excellent shouter. So never doubt that I will outshout you from the rooftops and that you will be on the wrong side of history.

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