National Day of Prayer and Chicken, August 8th

by Nate St. Pierre on August 3, 2012

Several states have banded together to declare August 8th to be a “National Day of Prayer and Chicken,” in opposition to gay rights activists’ “Kiss-In” on August 3rd, which is in opposition to the Christian “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” on August 1st. Early word has it that liberal-minded mayors in select cities are planning a “Whoops, The Health Department Revoked Your License Day” on August 10th in retaliation.

Seriously, America, this is getting ridiculous. All week my feeds have been blowing up with pictures of chickens and rainbows and people raging against the machine. It seems that all we need these days is a magnet, and people go happily running to the poles. There may be some fair and honest discussion in the middle, but if there is, I can’t hear it amid the noise.

Hey people-who-eat-fast-food-to-make-a-political-statement (primarily my Christian brethren), what’s the one thing that God has called us to do above all else? Here’s the answer, in Jesus’ own words, when someone asked Him what the most important commandment was (from Mark 12:30-31): ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

You have one thing to do, and you’re blowing it. I don’t see any of this happening right now. I see Christians rushing to support a polarizing cause, at the expense of real people with real hearts. It’s ugly and alienating, and only causes a greater rift in the national community. What you’re doing may not be hate, but it certainly isn’t love.

Hey people-who-take-any-excuse-to-boycott-and-hate-on-businesses-due-to-selective-political-views, how hypocritical are you being right now? You’re jumping on the bandwagon and trolling on Chick-fil-A for remaining true to the personal morals they’ve built their (legitimate and successful) business on since the beginning – preaching tolerance for your own viewpoint, but not theirs? Pretty sure you shouldn’t do that.

OMG I’LL NEVER EAT CHICKEN FROM THOSE BASTARDS AGAIN!
I would accept your self-righteousness as valid if you took the same stance on other businesses as well, but you don’t. Because you know that if you researched the viewpoints of every business leader whose establishment you wanted to patronize, you’d always find something to disagree with, and you wouldn’t be able to eat or shop anywhere. That would be decidedly inconvenient, so you’ll just heap some hate on Chick-fil-A and consider it a job well done.

I wish I could filter chickens and rainbows from my social media feeds.

Or maybe we could just put company leadership’s religious/political views on all Nutrition Label information from now on, and everybody would be happy.

Maybe that’s the middle ground.

  • THEIR CHICKEN ISN’T EVEN THAT GOOD!

    • Haha, we don’t have them here. I think I’ve been once or twice in Denver, maybe, over a decade ago? 

      • I had it ONCE a few years ago, and then this fall Cape got one. I’ve been there a handful of times. Most because I had coupons for free meals. I’ve only actually PAID for food there maybe 2-3 times since it’s opened.

  • jni

    I agree with you in that Im really sick of how big this thing has gotten. The thing that lost me though is your argument that people are only boycotting Chick Fil A and nowhere else. My boycotting of Chick Fil A isnt a new thing and I do boycott other businesses that support causes I dont agree with as well. I havent been to Best Buy in over two years, will never step into an Urban Outfitters, and avoid paper products (Angelsoft, Brawny)made by the companies under the Koch brothers. I may be the exception but I also dont publicize my choices. This is a decision Ive made for my household and mine alone.

    • I believe you are the exception there, yes, and I totally respect your stance and admire your diligence in making sure your consumption aligns with your values. And saying it’s a decision you’ve made for your household alone . . . can’t ask for anything more. Thanks for that comment, seriously. 

  • I guess I can just say, I don’ t need Chick-Fil-A, the religious right or anyone to tolerate me, just leave me and my rights alone and I can leave you be as well.  But there is no more civil form of “protest” than to NOT patronize a company you knowingly gives your money to support causes you disagree with.  

    Chick-Fil-A’s ONLY mistake, was going public with it and not just leaving the political stuff to be as quiet as possible, be sure…as soon as I am aware (and no I don’t go digging..just like I did not dig to find out about CFA)…I will most likely avoid that company as well.

    • Agreed about the civil form of protest, for sure. As far as being quiet about it, that seems reasonable to me. Not to be ashamed of your viewpoints (whichever side you’re on), but probably not in everyone’s best interest to flaunt them, because we see how that acts as a lightning rod most of the time. Not that Mr. Cathy was flaunting them, per se – he was being interviewed by a religious magazine, so how do you expect him to talk?

      Good points, thanks.

      •  He made a choice to do an interview with a religious magazine, and he made the choice to respond to the question. 

        For me, it works both ways.  There are companies I support and spend my money with because of their public views on issues and there are companies I avoid because of their public views on issues.  If a company doesn’t take a public stand on issues, it isn’t a factor when I decide if I am going spend my money their.

  • Bluebuddha1961

    Nate- Good article, and I agree with your points. However, you are leaving out a huge part. Most gay people don’t give a rats a$s about CFA’s stance on gay marriage. What they are concerned about is the fact that CFA gives millions to groups who’s sole mission is to derail them.

    • Feels like the same thing to me. They DO care about CFA’s stance on gay marriage exactly BECAUSE they give millions to certain group(s) against it.

      • Bluebuddha1961

        What would you do if someone was trying to take your rights away?

  • Bluebuddha1961

    Gay people want equal protection under the law…just like everyone would. Today I will stop by CFA and support the LGBT community and not CFA.

  • Kay

    Great post Nate… I don’t believe that Christians were
    rushing to Chick-fil-A to intentionally make a scene or cause division. I
    believe it was to lift Chick-fil-A since they were being put down as so many
    were eager to attack them over words spoken during an interview – not during a
    debate.

     

    The scripture encourages all Christians to bear each other’s burden and
    that is what happened on August 1st. No one should be bullied for his or her
    beliefs. That, I believe, is the middle ground upon we all must stand on. 

    • That’s a fair view of it, if that’s what people were doing. And I’m sure many of them were. From some of the stuff I saw, though, a lot of it felt more like a “in-your-face”-type thing, which made me sad.

      • Bluebuddha1961

        I agree with that Nate. Dan Cathy of (CFA) started the whole thing. Within days of his statements, one of his chief staff members who deals with marketing and public relations dropped dead of a heart attack. Very sad. Karma?

        • I think it’s incredibly unfair to bring someone’s death into the conversation like that.

          And I disagree about Dan Cathy starting this gigantic fight. Yes, he said what he believed, but he was being interviewed by a religious publication in part about his religious beliefs. What’s he supposed to say?

          If a longstanding proponent of gay marriage is being interviewed by a gay-focused magazine, are they supposed to not say what they believe as well? And then are they to be blamed if people get in an uproar about it?

          Feels like this is much ado in a forum that’s not appropriate for the topic.

          • Bluebuddha1961

            Nate, I feel bad about the mans death. Why is it out of bounds? It happened. I’m sure all the stress of dealing with the CEO’s statements didn’t help.

          • I don’t think it’s out of bounds to wonder if all the stress contributed, but I do think it’s out of bounds to suggest “karma?’, meaning “Dan Cathy/CFA said/did bad things, so this guy died.”

          • Bluebuddha1961

            How is that any different to the Christian belief that God caused AIDS to punish gay people? Come on Nate.

          • That’s just as stupid a thing for them to say as your “karma” comment. Only difference is, those people aren’t saying it on my blog. 

            You’re done here.

      • Kay

        I am with you, Nate. My
        heart breaks because we are always at war over everything.  So many of us seem to look for reasons to
        fight, blame and separate. When did America’s great pot stop melting?

         Human beings have the ability reason, reconcile
        and rise above. Where has civilization gone? Agree to disagree but remain respectful
        of each other.

    • Bluebuddha1961

      Kay…that is exactly what they wanted to do was make a scene and cause division. They have a right to their viewpoint, but that is not everyone’s viewpoint. And it was hateful. WWJD? Not alienate a whole community. Strange business model also.

      • You two can talk, but if you start getting ornery and angry at each other, I’m blocking further comments from you both on this page. Just FYI.

        • Bluebuddha1961

          You know that’s fine Nate. It’s an emotional subject, if you are about censorship then I think I will just not be a part of the discussion. Pretty one sided Nate. If it were your rights how would you feel?

        • Kay

          You will not get any hate from me… Besides, I respect your space and
          other opinions.

          However, you can delete the last three paragraphs,
          as they are duplicates 🙂

      • Kay

        What happened at Chick-fil-A on August 1st seemed
        not to be a protest but rather a show of support for a company many felt was
        being unfairly attacked. Where exactly is this sentiment of exclusion coming
        from? Individuals and families went there to buy food. Was the very presence of
        those patrons threatening?

        Furthermore,
        What makes you believe that all who purchased food on that day were supporting
        Chick-fil-A or that they were even Christian? There are a lot of wannabes out
        there. The actions of a few malicious people should not bring
        condemnation and judgment on an entire group.

        WWJD? Well, if He were asked a question He felt He needed to
        answer, He would have answered according to His belief in YHWH, the GOD He
        serves.

        It seems that all companies have a business model that reflects their
        beliefs. I am sure that Hugh Hefner’s business model is strange to many –
        that’s his right.

        Furthermore,
        What makes you believe that all who purchased food on that day were supporting
        Chick-fil-A or that they were even Christian? There are a lot of wannabes out
        there. The actions of a few malicious people should not bring
        condemnation and judgment on an entire group.

        WWJD? Well, if He were asked a question He felt He needed to
        answer, He would have answered according to His belief in YHWH, the GOD He
        serves.

        It seems that all companies have a business model that reflects their
        beliefs. I am sure that Hugh Hefner’s business model is strange to many –
        that’s his right.

  • wordsinpurple

    Well written piece Nate. I think gay rights are civil rights, but people need to look at how they communicate with each other. Yes self expression is important, but what is the point of it? Is it to understand another’s point of view (you can do this and still maintain an opposing one)? Or is it simply to beat another down. There are those that will never change their mind on both sides. But then there are also those that just don’t understand. But want to. 

  • Marie

    What concerns me is now that they have gone so very public with this stance, how do they treat their employees that consider themselves gay, bi, lesbian or transsexual.   Can’t we all just love everyone?

  • I’m a Christian and I like chicken – I’ve never been to Chick-Fil-A (I live in the UK the furthest I’ve been from the UK is Turkey – no pun intented!)

    I don’t know if my argument is theologically sound but there you go. I see it this way. 

    The bible says it’s wrong to be gay, but in the OT it says lots of things are wrong like eating certain foods and dressing a certain way – having my ears pierced is wrong under OT law. 

    It says in the NT that “Let him without sin cast the first stone”, I am forgiven by God through grace but I still screw up, I probably mentally swore when I dropped my iphone on Saturday and the screen smashed but I’m forgiven. So it might not be right but I don’t have the authority to make judgements on other people in my eyes God has the power and that will happen on judgement day. 

    So for now I’ll try and Love my neighbour as myself, whether that’s taking cookies to my neighbours to wish them Happy Christmas, whether that’s chatting to my neighbours over the fence about the weather and their garden. 

    Whether it’s helping a lady in the supermarket when her trolley is misbehaving, or offering to help a family with a flat tyre on the side of the road. Whether it’s getting out my car to remove a sandbag from the road where it had been left during road works. 

    There are little things I can do to love my neighbour and who knows who I’ll bless by doing it. 

    I don’t get what the issue is with Chick-Fil-A/Christians but get over it! There are kids in India called dalits who don’t have access to clean water, food or electricity. There are kids in Africa who don’t have families because AIDS/HIV has tore their families apart. There are wars going on in Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq and you want to tell me you want to fight for this??? 

    We are blessed we have human rights, we have clean water, good food, we have electricity and jobs. We worry about the newest piece of technology or nice clothes. 

    I don’t have the answers but I think people could do with a reality check sometimes. What’s worth fighting for and what are you fighting for?

  • you knew i was coming, nate. nobody is free when others are oppressed. i have a list a mile long of unethical businesses that i boycott, either permanently or temporarily. this is not about personal free speech. cathy spends company money (made off the backs of many of his gay employees) to influence legislation which denies minorities their rights. i would’ve helped black people gain their freedom, i would’ve hid jews in my attic and i will fight for gay rights, even though it is of no consequence to me personally, because it is the right thing to do.

    • I wondered if I’d see you here, haha. 🙂

      So here’s a question: I know that you are one of the diligent ones who takes time to look into things and make decisions on who you will boycott based on what you find. How deep does that go? Do you seek out things about companies, or do you only do additional digging when you hear something that doesn’t sit right? 

      For instance, do you research a new restaurant chain before you stop in for a bite? Just curious how it works.

      • definitely, i determine which issues are of greatest importance to me and give them priority.  i don’t have tons of time to research, so i do rely on friends to give me a heads up. i have subscribed to blogs that tell me when companies change their policies for better or worse. sometimes i do a temporary boycott just to spank ’em, if the offense is minor. and most importantly, i live very simply. i don’t need to do alot of research because i just don’t buy as much stuff as i used to.

  • Diane Mettam

    I’m not a big Chick-Fil-A fan, and I don’t live anywhere near one; my problem with them is their overt antagonism against homosexuals.  They’re not just quietly taking a stance, they’re publicly announcing it and daring you to disagree.  And by supporting the Family Research Council they’re knowingly supporting Uganda’s “kill homosexuals” policy.  That is just wrong.  I can choose not to support their business (if I’m in that area), and ask others not to support it, just as I don’t support motels in my are that oppress workers by not paying them minimum wage, and advise other people not to patronize them.
    Likewise, I don’t patronize WalMart for its employment practices and its use of goods made by people who don’t earn a living wage, and work in horrendous conditions, and its use of beneficial tax codes that penalize local “mom & pop” businesses.  And I don’t patronize Target for its corporate support of many right-wing causes.  That’s my choice.  I can put my money where my mouth is by being a careful consumer.  I highly recommend GreenAmerica.org and other organizations for information on shopping with your heart as well as your brain.
    By the way, I am a Christian minister.  I follow Christ’s command to love God with all our heart and all our soul and all our mind, and to love our neighbor as ourself.  I believe these two commandments trump all the others.

  • “preaching tolerance for your own viewpoint, but not theirs” — beautifully said, Nate.

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