Chick-Fil-A's COO is not God.
Fast food will make you fat.
Bullying is bad.
This week, I've debated with friends, prayed (alone) and talked with young gay men about the Chick-Fil-A debacle.
Yes, an American has the right to express his/her opinions. Yes, Chick-Fil-A's sweet tea is pretty darn good. But, no, a company in the public eye that serves, and employs, so many young people should not discriminate -- especially during a gay teen suicide epidemic.
Unitarian Minister Debra Haffner says that we have known for more than 30 years that at least one third of all suicides to teens are to gay youth. This means, according to HealthyPlace.com's Ciara Thomas, that "gay teens are 300% more likely to kill themselves than heterosexual youth."
So, why add additional stress to their lives?
When Chick-Fil-A's CEO made his statement, he might not have realized, but he was promoting a form of bullying.
What if either a Twitter or Facebook exec had made these statements? All hell would have broken loose. Why? Because companies in the public eye that serve young people have a responsibility to look out for our youth and our families. No exec should make statements about a group of people based on gender, religion, race or sexual preference - because it leads to hate in communities, and, in some cases, families. Chick-Fil-A is no different.
I've received several notes, DMs and tweets from youngsters:
- One young gay man is from a family in the south. His dad, mom and siblings have been running around, talking about how great it is that Chick-Fil-A has taken a stand against gays -- and stood in line for sandwiches. That kid cannot speak out. If he does, he might get kicked out of his home.
- Another teen was sent to his room for saying he doesn't like Chick-Fil-A because it is hurting his LGBT friends.
- A girl that works at Chick-Fil-A also wrote to us. She isn't sure if she is gay, but thinks she might be a lesbian. She is now extremely stressed about the situation at work, but needs the money.
- Another teen-aged boy said his friends that work at Chick-Fil-A are being treated badly by their peers -- because their friends disagree with the company's stance. But, they need the money and cannot quit.
It's really strange to me how some conservative Christians in America have been so quick to almost idolize a chain of restaurants for taking a public stand against gay marriage, but have been so slow to realize they are supporting something that hurts people -- possibly even their own children.
If you are a true Christian, do you want to hurt people? COO Dan Cathy is not God.
On the flip side, I also thought it was strange that the liberals among us are protesting the stance with signage and chants outside Chick-Fil-A restaurants. Why waste your valuable energy?
I personally think we should let them eat their chikin until they're so full of grease that they have to hit the Pepto. Then, maybe they'll have some time on their porcelain goddesses to think about the big picture.
Pastor Mike Patz of Gainesville, Fla., who wrote about the Chick-Fil-A disaster a bit more eloquently and Christian-like than I, writes:
"I am so sorry today for all the hatred that Christians have dished out toward gays. I am so sorry for all of the homophobic sarcasm that has come from the pulpits of Christian ministers. I am so sorry for the way we pick and choose which sins to condemn. I am so sorry that we have claimed to follow Jesus while we neglected widows and orphans, and then engaged in gossip and gluttony. I am so sorry that we have provided such a bad example for the rest of society to follow. I’m embarrassed, I’m ashamed, and I repent. I’m serious. I repent."
On my Facebook page, I (a self-professed health nut) poked fun at the sad sight of people that were waiting in line to get chicken sandwiches -- because so many of them were just plain fat.
Most of America is fat. It's an awful truth. The "Classic" Chick-Fil-A sandwich has 440 calories and 16 grams of fat, and a medium order of "Waffle Fries" contains 390 calories and 20 grams of fat. Just ask Michelle Obama how much clogging that's doing to America's arteries.
Even sadder, however, is the fact that it is usually pretty hard to get people in the USA to stand up for their rights (or what they believe is their right).
But, in this case, since there was food involved, Americans came out in droves to gorge -- and to support bullying.
About the author: Kelly Ann Collins is the founder of Glittarazzi. The opinions expressed in this article are her own. She is also very annoyed that she will now have to boycott Chick-Fil-A's yummy sweet tea -- for life. Have a comment? Leave it below, or tweet Kelly Ann @kellyanncollins.
MORE YUMMY CHIKIN READS:
- KFC Loves Gays With John Goodman [funnyordie.com]
- Chick-fil-A manager goes rogue, sponsors New Hampshire gay pride fest [ny daily news]
- The Morning After Chick-fil-A Day [pastor mike patz]
- Tweet Now: Spread the Word about Chick-fil-A’s Discriminatory History [hrc]
- If It Ain't Chickens, It's Feathers: Chick-Fil-A 'Appreciation' Hits Twitter, Drive-Thrus [glittarazzi]
- Waffle Fries, Anyone?: Mike Huckabee Loves Chick-Fil-A (Maybe A Little Too Much) [glittarazzi]
Video: "Chicken Fried" by Zac Brown Band
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