Report From the Front: A Visit to Chick-Fil-A

I had never been to a Chick-fil-A fast-food outlet before, had scarcely even noticed them, but today, on the third day of Chick-fil-A Appreciation Week, I decided to go have lunch at the one in the local mall.

I was  inspired at least partly by the announcement that gay groups intended to demonstrate at Chick-fil-A outlets throughout the country. They were planning “kiss-ins,” meaning that same-sex couples were going to ram their sexual preferences down the mealtime crowd’s throats by kissing each other in public. This was to be in retaliation for remarks by one of the chief honchos at Chick-fil-A, Dan Cathy, who recently told an interviewer that he was a religious man who thought marriages were appropriate only  between heterosexual partners.

Mr. Cathy’s remarks had caused the mayors of Chicago and Boston to proclaim that Chick-fil-A outlets, which serve mainly chicken sandwiches, would not be welcome in their cities. That, in turn, prompted former GOP presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee to organize Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day two days ago, in which people were encouraged to eat a meal at the restaurant chain in support of religious freedom and freedom of speech. The turnout, as you must have noticed in the news, was enormous in almost every community where Chick-fil-A has its 1,600 restaurants.

I showed up at the local restaurant after 1 p.m., or past the peak lunch period, but there was still a long line of people waiting to place orders, and there were some seventy-five diners — a staggering number for a single fast-food restaurant at a single moment — seated inside the restaurant and in a spillover area in the hallway.

I scanned the crowd apprehensively, but could see no kissing couples, homosexual or heterosexual. I did notice here and there an occasional pair of males, and an occasional pair of females, but evidently they were just good friends.

I had to wait in  line for ten minutes before I could place my order for a chicken deluxe sandwich and a strawberry milkshake. The shake was delicious, but the sandwich seemed too peppery in spots, and in other spots too bland. I have had better chicken sandwiches.

I asked the young fellow who took my order whether he was keeping busy enough, but he didn’t seem to appreciate the gag. He seemed resentful. Perhaps he doesn’t like to work hard, or perhaps he is not entirely in sympathy with the reason that most people are patronizing Chick-fil-A these days. I can only guess whom he kisses when he gets home.

My meal was brought to me by a pretty, good-natured young woman whom I would gladly have kissed if I had detected the slightest encouragement. I  told her that the lunchtime turnout seemed amazing, and she agreed, but quickly added that she hoped people would decide that the food was good on its own merits, and would keep coming back. “Let me know if there is anything else you want,” she said cheerfully, and it was all I could do to keep from banging my forehead on the table.

As I was finishing, an elderly employee came by to collect my tray, and I chatted with her too. She said that on the big day, Wednesday, some of the diners came from as far away as 150 miles, because they didn’t have a Chick-fil-A in their own towns. She said she hoped that more outlets would be opening in the region as a result of the surge in public support.

I was kind of  disappointed that I didn’t get to see some demonstrators smooching, although it might have interfered with my digestion. On the other hand, perhaps it is just as well that everyone restrained himself, because this is a very red city in a very red state, full of people with strong opinions. I am not sure that the amorous couples would have left the premises under their own power.

Author Bio:

Arthur Louis spent more than forty years as a print journalist, with the Philadelphia Inquirer, McGraw-Hill, Fortune magazine and the San Francisco Chronicle, but he is not asking for sympathy. He is the author of two non-fiction books: The Tycoons, and Journalism and Other Atrocities, as well as a novel, The Little Champ. In retirement, he has decided unilaterally that he is a profound political pundit.
Author website: http://bernardgoldberg.com
  • dee47

    I also made my first visit, I throughly enjoyed the sandwich and fries ..My husband who is usually quiet even agreed wholeheartly.  I will be going their when I crave fast food which is about every three months. Very good food not processed chicken. I am so glad Rahm,Menino, and Gray introduced us to a great place to eat. Freedom of speech does work for the better…

  • CentralScruntinizer

    You’ll find this twice as adorable: It’s pretty clear that you don’t understand the judicial branch of government at all, because you’re either being willfully clueless or delighting yourself with semantic games regarding prop 8.    Either you’re claiming that gays had identical rights because they could marry someone of the opposite sex or you’re claiming that they had identical rights because they had one vote like everyone else.    But again there is a very strong argument to be made that the outcome of Prop 8  violated their 5th amendment rights.   You can like it or not, but that’s one of the areas where the debate is centered.   You can either understand what both sides are using for foundation, or you can make up your own logic.  Be my guest.

    Also, your ramblings about the byproduct of allowing gay marriage being a free for all of Santorum style couplings demonstrates that you have little awareness of the attempts to use Lawrence v Texas (saying privacy rights trumped anti-sodomy statutes) to legalize incest, etc..    You’re making assumptions that run 180 degrees from reality, because the vast majority of those attempts to expand the reach of Lawrence were denied.

    So, again and hopefully cuter than a box of kittens, I question whether your bias again homosexuals and the possibility of their right to marry being extended hasn’t made you incapable of understanding the basics of the legal arguments.

  • Artlouis

    TO THOSE OF YOU WHO ARE STILL FOLLOWING THIS THREAD:
    I went back to the restaurant today. It was less crowded, and the grouchy counter man was in a better mood but not yet smiling. I ordered a different sandwich, the basic chicken sandwich, and tried the peach shake. Both items were delicious. I shall return.

    • http://www.facebook.com/christopher.coughlin.10 Christopher Coughlin

       I have found the same thing with different restaurants from time to time. I myself am a long-time K.F.C fan and still prefer the original recipe chicken, whether as chicken or in a sandwich.

  • Scottbautry

    The media should publish the philanthrapy the family who ran Chick-fil-A has done in the past.  They have done much for Berry College where I went to school.  They funded the school and scholarships for Christian students.  They also held summer camps bringing in kids with special needs or from disadvantaged families.  Lots of kids and lots of counselors to run them.  They also had a few homes for families willing to take in foster kids on a beautiful campus. 

    “remarks by one of the chief honchos at Chick-fil-A” — The key word being “remarks”.  There was a time when the ACLU would be up in arms about this — not against CFA but the orgs seeking to punish him for opening his mouth.  Free speech isn’t so free in our nation.  And eventually, I expect to see hate speech laws inacted in some states and then federally. 

    — And the ultimate extension of them is clear:  The top people at Chick-fil-A have long supported Christian organizations and not hidden their faith.  So, if Chick-fil-A can’t say something like this, then Christian (and Muslim) preachers across the nation will be put on warning…

    • Artlouis

       Scott,
      That is a scary scenario. Everybody forced to adopt Chicago values.

      • SRS

        Values and Chicago simply not something that go together.

        • SRS

          simply are not

          • Artlouis

             We are seeing how Chicago values play out in the attack ads the Dems have been running.

  • FloridaJim

    Bernie has a more discriminating palate than I, apparently. I have eaten at Chick-Fil-A in several different states and found them to be pleasant, attentive, very friendly and an enjoyable sandwich. What did make me return was the unfailing politeness of the employees far better than most fast food emporiums, I think. 

  • Mike Bisson

    Dear Mr. Louis:

    Thank you for your article.  I enjoyed all of it except for the last
    comment, “On the other hand,
    perhaps it is just as well that everyone restrained himself, because this is a
    very red city in a very red state, full of people with strong opinions. I am
    not sure that the amorous couples would have left the premises under their own power.”
     The
    whole Chic-Fil-A episode shows that it is the left that demonstrates intolerance
    not the right.

    • Artlouis

       Mike,
       You make a good case.

      • http://www.facebook.com/christopher.coughlin.10 Christopher Coughlin

         Both my brother and one of my sisters is “Gay” and while I appreciate how they feel about marriage between same sex couples, as a devout Catholic, I cannot support same sex marriage. The argument is not about tolerance but political power and dictating individual thought to those who disagree with a minority view.

        • Artlouis

           Exactly so.

  • Jeffreydan

      Every sandwich I’ve bought there has had consistent flavor and quality. I hope your experience was an aberration, as it’s hard for me to imagine anyone who likes chicken not finding their classic sandwich yummy.
     
      CFA’s shakes should make almost any competitor jealous. Their chocolate ones are cool, creamy liquid crack to me. 
     
            

    • Artlouis

       Gulp. Here you have me salivating for one of their shakes, and it is late on a Sunday night. Torture.

  • Joel Wischkaemper

    Thank you to who ever thought that idea up.

    I don’t want to hammer Gays, but the owner had an opinion and expressed it.  He did not take discriminatory action on his opinion.  The Gays were wrong.. and did the wrong thing, but in some of the communities I have been in recently, the Gays are crusing for a ‘special’ political recognition and marriage in the sight of God.  They will get neither from me, and it is remarkably dense for them to ask for such.

  • Gary Kallback

    Here is an overview of the issues placed under one roof.  Good or bad, it is what it is. 

    http://www.freedomisknowledge.com/emails/2012/07292012.html

    The only missing information so far, unless I have missed it, is a statement from Barack Obama going after his Democrat-elected thugs for jumping on an American’s company’s right of free speech and to set up a business where it sees fit when meeting zoning guidelines and city health regulations.  

    But when Democrats on behalf of Obama want to cut back on the days troops are allowed to submit votes in Ohio to potentially reduce votes from conservatives, I believe we have seen all that we need to see from this elected official and his so-called party of the people, sounding and acting  more Marxist each day.

    http://cowboybyte.com/10782/obama-campaign-sues-to-restrict-military-members-from-voting/

    Using David Axelrod’s own words intended against Newt Gingrich, “The Higher a Monkey Climbs On The Pole, the More You Can See His Butt.’”

    Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/obama-campaign-on-newt-the-higher-a-monkey-climbs-on-the-pole-the-more-you-can-see-his-butt-2011-12

    • Artlouis

       Many thanks for the comment, Gary.

    • George Hyde

       Gary, very good summary!  I would like for a couple of the commenters on here to explain how that summary squares with their beliefs that they are the victims in this.

  • CentralScruntinizer

     OK, we get it – You’re a retired reporter and now a political pundit.  But having been a reporter, do you think it still might be incumbent upon you to get all the facts impacting a situation?  I agree that he posturing by Boston and Chicago Mayors was ill advised, heavy handed and likely not legally enforceable.   Score one for the conservatives.    

    BUT, the rest of the controversy is hardly about free speech, since Mr. Cathy was never in danger of losing his right to speak his mind or profess his beliefs regardless of how this all played out.   It also was hardly about  religious freedom unless you define it as the right to deny 10% of the country the same rights you enjoy based on a very subjective interpretation of a 2000 year old text.  

    What I hold you at fault for is either by accidental or willful omission, you fail to mention the aggressive financial activism practiced by Chick-Fil-A at Mr. Cathy’s direction.  The company reportly gives millions to groups like Exodus Ministries and Focus on the Family to  lobby hard against extending homosexuals the right to marry, against extending partner benefits and, worst of all,  against the US Congress pressuring Uganda to abandon a proposed law allowing the execution of homosexuals based on their sexual orientation.  

    That final issue alone should make Chick-Fil-A , Exodus and FOF radioactive with anyone who has a functioning conscience, regardless of religious background or political beliefs.    I would hope that you would have understood all factors in the whole matter before quickly framing it as just another idiotic skirmish in the culture war where you could re-affirm your disgust with the gays and liberals. 

    • George Hyde

       You are kidding, right?  It is his money, fairly earned.  Are you trying to make an Alice in Wonderland leap of logic here -  that since he earned this money based on labor from his employees, he can only use it in ways that those employees would unanimously approve.

      Why is it not just as right for him to spend his money to support things HE believes in. as it is for any liberal to send their money to organizations that try to push things that THEY believe in.

      We already know the answer, don’t we?  You believe that he should use his money to support only those things that YOU, a progressive liberal, approve of

      It is not incumbent on him to spend or not spend his money in ways that you, or anyone else, do or do not like.

      From all accounts, and this is not just a made up statement like Obama uses, he treats his employees the same (and gives them great training for use in the real world) whether they personally agree with his positions or not.  Contrary to the progressive program, he has done all that is required, and more than almost every other business in the world!

      • CentralScruntinizer

        No leap at all – From all reports, the money going to those groups is corporate money. Therefore Chick-Fil-A as a corporate entity is actively supporting discrimination against tens of millions of people based on their sexual orientation. For those people, and others like me who feel that they should have the right to marry whomever they choose, the reaction is to consciously not eat at Chick-Fil-A. How is this any better or worse than conservative boycotts of Oreo, JC Penney, Disney, ABC, Target, NBC, Toyota, and so on?

        I have no idea what you were trying to say about Chick-Fil-A doing more than almost any other business in the world. What?

        Also, the issue of Chick-Fil-A’s money being used for lobbying congress NOT to condemn Uganda for considering a law allowing execution of gays based on their sexual orientation is pretty horrific. You made no mention of that.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Stephen-Green/100001808911369 Stephen Green

          discrimination? no problem. we lost our culture a long time ago. we were at  one time a nation with a majority rule. now it’s just a bunch
          of idiots like you. and the one % ‘s who actually run the place are laughing at us. tossing more ACLU bones to the perverts you think are
          cool.. 

          • CentralScruntinizer

            You realize its not a stretch of the imagination to hear that same argument used 50 years ago during the fight over the civil rights act, right?

            Also, we’re still a nation with a three branch federal government, all of which are en route to ushering gay marriage into normal everyday boring life.   The polling is projecting that most states will be to a point where they will be passing gay marriage in about 5-7 years,  as more open minded youngs out poll the reactionary olds.  But before that time, the judiciary, the branch established by the founding fathers to make sure that the rights of the minority were not trampled by the tyranny of the majority, will very possibly have ruled that gay marriage is legal under the Equal Protection clause.

            Finally, you do realize that idiots like me – white, straight college educated northeastern WASPs-  are the ones who ran this country for the first 220 years, right?   Some of us just think that everyone finally deserves that equal opportunity to become unequal (and marry whomever they choose.)  

          • Jeffreydan

               “Some of us just think that everyone finally deserves that equal opportunity to become unequal (and marry whomever they choose.)”
             
              There is no such thing as the right to marry whomever one chooses. Nobody, not even heterosexuals, can marry “whomever they choose.” 
              That’s the problem with the liberals’ efforts to redefine marriage: that specific argument, along with “our love for and commitment to each other is no less profound,” would be the exact reason the right should be given to ANYONE. Are you going to argue for the right for 2 gay men to marry if they’re brothers? How about 5 gay men? How about heterosexual siblings?    
              Homosexuals said they deserve the same rights as heterosexuals (no argument from me), but then they still cried foul when they had the right to civil unions with the same practical rights as marriages. 
             
              Besides that, liberals’ talk about civil rights and equality for all is just that: talk. If they really held civil rights in such high regard, they wouldn’t have wanted the votes of thousands of pro-Prop 8 Californians thrown out. If they really cared about being equal to everyone else, they’d be offended by the mere idea of hate-crime legislation.    
                 
             
                 
                

          • CentralScruntinizer

            You can work all the Santorum false equivalents you want, but its inevitable that gay marriage will be permitted in many states in 5 years, most if not all in 20.  Look at the shift in polls over the past decade – It’s much more favored by 18-35 than older and the margin against it is shrinking steadily. 

            And you flat out don’t understand the purpose of the judicial branch if you feel that a state or federal judicial ruling that overturns an unconstitutional piece of legislation is denying anyone their civil rights.  The “civil rights” of the majority to deny the minority equal protection under the law?   

          • Jeffreydan

              Responding to a more recent post by you:
              Marriage remaining defined the way it is is not a violation of gays’ civil rights. In fact, gays have always had the right to marry. A gay man can marry a woman, and a gay woman can marry a man, within the scope of the law. But like I said before, they and the rest of the population do not have the right to marry anyone they want. If you don’t know or accept this fact, that’s your problem.

              Senator Santorum had nothing to do with my point about potentially opening up a can of worms. Please answer yes or no: as a matter of law, if people are granted the right to marry, as the liberals want it worded, “whomever they choose,” can siblings/groups marry? Does your doubting it will happen change the fact that it COULD?       

              There was nothing unconstitutional about the Prop. 8 vote. Far, far more than enough signatures were gathered to put in on the ballot, the votes were duly cast and counted, and the majority won. Through it all, gays had all of the exact same rights as everyone else.

              Nice job of avoiding the argument

          • CentralScruntinizer

            Your bias seems to be overwhelmning your logic.   You can play word games all you want about gays having the right to marry the opposite sex.  Kudos.    And knowing and accepting that gays don’t have the right to marry each other isn’t my problem or your problem, but an evolving definition being addressed by the courts and by state ballots.  It’s far from settled.

            As for Santorum, he has everything to do with your question, as he is the most vocal advocate of your rhetorical stance.   To clarify your question, no, liberals are not advocating the legislative or legal wording to be “whomever they want” -   And the answer to your question is no.  Laws prohibiting incest will prevent sibling marriage, and those laws will trump any extension of marriage laws.   Look at the attempts to apply the ruling from Lawrence v Texas as precedent in cases involving incest. 

            And no one was remotely claiming that the voting process from prop 8 was unconstitutional.  You’re grasping at a straw man.  The issue is whether a majority vote even matters in this issue, since one of the tenets of the judicial branch is to protect the rights of the minority when the majority attempts to deny them rights that are guaranteed by the constitution.   In this case, the question is the whether the right to equal protection under the law as guaranteed under the 5th amendment  is being denied. 

            Those are pretty specific and direct answers for you.  Your ability and willingness to comprehend the issues is of course up to you.

          • Jeffreydan

              You’re showing positive signs, but you still don’t quite get it. (Your statement about whether I can or will comprehend–just adorable!) 
            Close relatives that want to marry are not allowed to. Groups that want to marry are also not allowed. Teachers cannot marry their students, even if both parties want to, and no matter how much liberals argue that 14-year-old girls should make adult decisions. They have the exact same argument as gays do for the right being extended to them: they are vicitms of unjust laws that deny them their rights. Change the definition of marriage, and you establish precedent that other groups can use. (Multiple-spouse advocates are already taking the argument to the courts, in fact.) You said laws against incest will prevent relatives from being given the right to marry. Incorrect. All you need are two things: the right precedent and the right judge. Hopefully you’re not so naive to remain in denial about this.

              Sadly, you still don’t understand the point about Proposition 8, but you deserve another shot at it. 
              A small percentage of Californians had the exact same rights as the majority. That’s a fact. No matter how unacceptable or unfair they considered the exact terms of the law to be, they had 100% identical rights.
              When all was said and done, the minority were granted non-existent rights, while the majority watched their rights get pissed on.   

        • George Hyde

           What do you not understand about it being his money and his company?  Whatever you think of their choices, it is still their right to make those choices.  I also have certainly not questioned your right to not eat there or to boycott CFA – just wear your little buns out on it, for all I care. 

          I missed the part of the discussion where we were talking about these conservative boycotts and certainly did not see that I was supposed to address another of your pet peeves on lobbying of Congress.  I am sure that all of your favorite groups do everything they can to lobby Congress, right?  Why do you feel you have that right, but others who may disagree with you do not?  Along that particular line, why don’t you tell us about all the boycotting of the Islam countries you do because of the way they treat women?

          Oh, I didn’t miss it, did I?  You just used the only defense liberals have – try to obfuscate the discussion.

          I can understand that you might not appreciate my comment about CFA being one of the absolute best at training and nurturing its employees.  If you are like most liberals, you have no concept of what goes into building and running a business.

          • CentralScruntinizer

            So what exactly are you disagreeing with me about?  – I’m only supporting peoples right to boycott Chick-Fil-A.  You seem to be on the same page there.  In my original comment you’ll notice that I stipulated that I thought the threats of the Mayors of Boston and Chicago were wrong and not legally enforceable.  So that leaves us talking about the boycott, no?

            The only thing I think you fail to connect is that one of the reasons for the boycott is not the words of Mr. Cathy on behalf of Chick-Fil-A, it’s what he does with the company revenues, which is give it to conservative groups who lobby on behalf of discrimination and worse, on behalf of Congress not condemning Ugandan Christian groups trying to pass a law allowing the execution of gays in that country.   Did I say that was not his right, or that the government should prohibit those donations?  Of course not, its an ethical not a legal issue.  Therefore I repeat for the fifth time that I think all involved would be better served understanding that those protesting are objecting to Chick-Fil-A’s corporate actions, not the just the words of their CEO. 

            And I hate to burst your preconception of progressives, but I went out on my own and have been building a small business since 2007.  I have 34 people working for me.   Being a bigot and a businessman do not necessarily go hand in hand. 

            Now by all means, please return to your regularly scheduled comments claiming that I’m trying to deny anyone their right to anything. 

          • George Hyde

             No, actually it leaves you talking about everything you can bring up about somebody not meeting your “moral” standards.  How did that boycott work out for you, anyway, since you claim that is what you are focusing on?

            As far as expecting people like me to be concerned with your marriage problems, I wouldn’t hold my breath.

            You are so proud of the three branches of government on the way to supporting your “lifestyle,” but I notice you avoid mentioning that the people, without fail have, rejected this crazy notion in every state where it has been put to a vote.

          • CentralScruntinizer

             No wonder you made no sense at any point along the way – You’re just an angry bigot spewing rage spittle.    Well calm down and try to focus -  I’m not gay. Maybe now you can find some central point you’re trying to make other than the fact that you hate gays and you hate this Chick-Fil-A boycott.   You jumped from trying to claim I was trying to deny CFA their rights, to just being angry that I supported the boycott.   

            You have every right to support CFA,  even if their support of the Ugandan execution of gays doesn’t bother you.  Enough about my “moral” standards, what about yours?  You never did justify your support of CFA in light of that issue.  Does your hate of 10% of our population extend far enough so that you would support murder? 

            And another point that should pacify you: gay marriage won’t impact my traditional marriage any more than it will impact yours. 

            And I guess you aren’t proud of our three branches as outlined in the constitution?  Why do you hate America so much?

          • SRS

            Perhaps it is the timing of the whole thing  is what is troubling. I have doubts that these groups just got monies from CFA on the same day the comments were released. If this were truly about the donations CFA made then this boycott would have been done long ago. Maybe it brought Cathy to the limelight and maybe people should know what issues every company donates to before we spend our money on their product. Perhaps it was just coincidence that this boycott came after the statements were made perhaps not. I think everyone should be made to make their own choice to patronize the restaurant or not based on your own personal views.  I just thank you and George for making this a civil dialogue.  Both your sides are very well taken. 

    • Artlouis

       Central, I set myself a limited objective — to see how the Chick-Fil-A controversy was playing itself out at one particular restaurant. Thanks for adding your comments to help fill out the background.

      As for being old, I plead guilty. Crotchety, however, dates back to about age ten.

    • wally

      Mr. Cathy wasn’t trying to drum up customers. He was just responding to a question asked by some reporter or news outlet. He gave his opinion. He is allowed to do that even though it isn’t shared by everyone. There is nothing wrong with that and if someone is offended, they can voice their disagreement and even not buy his product. The problem comes to the front when the disagreeing individuals attempt to get Cathy’s business shut down or his voice silenced as was evident by  Chicago and other mayors.  Note that there is an organization that rates corporations on how well they agree with the gay rights issue. The corporations that have a low rating should be blackballed(in their opinion) while the ones who agree are considered OK to do business with. Corporations do not care if a person is gay or straight. All they are interested in is that you buy their product. If free speech is prohibited and is allowed to progress to everything, nothing would change and the gay community would still have some issues.  The CEO’s opinion probably wouldn’t change and his opinion wouldn’t reflect the rest of his organization. He would believe what he believes and no amount of pressure would change that. It would only come from education or a change of heart.
        As for me, I believe that most gays are born that way. It is in their genes or DNA. I am fine with that. The objection I have is the marriage issue. What right does the government or anyone have to change the meaning of words? They do not have any right. Marriage has been the definition of a union between a man and a women for over 2000 years. It must not be changed. I believe that gays can form a union and have the same benefits as married couples but they do not have the right to use the same name for the union. I am sure that the gay community could come up with a word that describes their commitment without offending others. How about the word “Naturiage”? I bet they can even come up with a thousand more great words.

      • CentralScruntinizer

        I appreciate your line of logic, but I do disagree with part of it.  

        Cathy wasn’t trying to drum up customers, no.  But nor was he just making a passing statement on the radio.  The core of the protest, the was indeed inflamed by his comments, is Chick-Fil-A’s donation of millions of dollars as a corporation to groups like Focus on Family and Exodus ministries that lobby to deny gays the right to marry, deny gays many of the rights that they would get in civil unions like shared medical benefits, and worst of all, lobby Congress not to pressure Uganda to back off a proposed law that would allow gays to be executed for their sexual preference.

        As I’ve mentioned in a number of posts here, I think the posturing by the Mayors of Boston and Chicago was idiotic and likely could never be legally enforced. 

        As for government changing the meaning of the words, every marriage is, in the eyes of the government, a legal contract.   You have to get a marriage license at the town hall before you are actually married – What you do culturally after that is up to you.  Minister, Rabbi, Elvis impersonator, or ships captain could marry you.  The government isn’t forcing anyone to change that.     However, your notion that the definition of marriage not changing for 2000 years is way off.  Marriages over 200 years ago were more often than not arranged.   Women were married as barter.  Polygamy has commonly been an accepted form of marriage over the past 2000 years in many cultures.  So I think it’s safe to say that the definition of marriage has been evolving steadily.

    • Iggyb

      The CFL family has been a long time supporter of Christian organizations.  Organizations whose activities helping children and others would be applauded by most if they were publicized.

      The gay groups are trying to silence him through political activism.  They hope to pressure others to join in the silencing.  It isn’t much different from when conservative Christian organizations fought (and won) to get the show SOAP off the air.

      I’m a conservative Christian, but I was against the political pressure against a sitcom just as I’m against this attack on CFL.

      And there is a much broader issue at stake here too:  Because what the CFL people said is inline with the tenants of Christianity (except for the more liberal churches who have long put aside the Bible).   If CFL’s people can be silenced for what he said, then churches across the land (including different religions) should be attacked as well… 

      • AWoman

        “The gay groups are trying to silence him through political activism.”

        No. They were reacting by voicing their opinions in return. Freedom of speech does not guarantee citizens freedom from all consequences that may result from what is said.

  • http://www.facebook.com/gary.hogan.10 Gary Hogan

    this is stepping all over the first Amendment The news media and the gay orgs. relly crossed the line this time. 

    • Artlouis

       It really is serious, Gary. They may actually have doomed the Obama candidacy by waking up millions of voters.

  • drshi

    Your criticism of the chicken sandwich might have included the fact that the quality of most eateries’ food suffers when beset upon by an unprecidented and overwhelming influx of customers. I suspect that the less-than-enthusiastic counter person was also influenced by the same phenom.

    • Artlouis

       drshi,
      I have admitted both those possibilities. See my comments below.

      • drshi

        Though I’m sure you were and are aware of the mitigating factors I commented on, I feel they should have been included in your article rather than as an afterthought. Neither I nor I’m sure most members peruse the comments before offering our own; thus, the takeaway from your article seems to be that the franchise’s product is inferior. From: Disqus
        Sent: Sunday, August 05, 2012 3:11 PM
        To: drshi@optonline.net
        Subject: [bernardgoldberg] Re: Report From the Front: A Visit to Chick-Fil-A

        Artlouis (unregistered) wrote, in response to drshi:

        drshi,
        I have admitted both those possibilities. See my comments below.

        Link to comment

        • Artlouis

           drshi, This is all speculation. The known facts are that the sandwich was blah, and the guy at the counter was kind of rude. Draw whatever conclusions you want from that.

          I plan to go back there sometime, and will see if anything changes after the crowds disperse.

          • drshi

            C’mon, Art, the “speculation” is all on your part. I have eaten their sandwiches for years and have NEVER received the sort of “blahness” you describe. To routinely produce such a product in competition with those of the other chains would be suicide and you should know better. Whether consciously or unconsciously, your article does the company a disservice in the face of its already fascist attacks. From: Disqus
            Sent: Sunday, August 05, 2012 5:29 PM
            To: drshi@optonline.net
            Subject: [bernardgoldberg] Re: Report From the Front: A Visit to Chick-Fil-A

            Artlouis (unregistered) wrote, in response to drshi:

            drshi, This is all speculation. The known facts are that the sandwich was blah, and the guy at the counter was kind of rude. Draw whatever conclusions you want from that.
            I plan to go back there sometime, and will see if anything changes after the crowds disperse.
            Link to comment

          • Artlouis

            I think CFA will do well for a while even if they serve cardboard. I promise to go back there when they aren’t so busy.

  • Berryraymond

    I am so glad I don’t have Chicago values, I don’t fee comfortable around so many murders, however I don’t want to deny Chicagoinas from having any kind of values they want.  Wonder if this is hate speech.  I guess if it isn’t now, give it a few more years and it will be hate speech and punishable by a prision term.

    • Artlouis

       I wonder if any tourists still go to Chicago. I remember long ago, when Atlanta was the murder capital — every city gets its turn — a man visiting there called his worried wife on a pay phone to assure her that he was safe. As he was talking, he was shot and killed by a robber. 

  • nono524

    Great article. I also support the right to free speech. The mayor of Chicago is just another school yard bully. He should try to address the 20 murders a week, more than Afghanistan, rather then worry about chicken restaurant’s.  I am glad I don’t have Chicago values!

    • Artlouis

       I couldn’t believe it when he said CFA doesn’t have Chicago values. Few people outside of prison do.

  • http://twitter.com/ideabuddy Mr.D

    I had a mediocre meal with a ridiculously high price tag. I won’t be back.

    • Theneighborhoodguy

      You, Mr. D, have just described EVERY fast food restaurant chain in America.  If your meal was served fast and hot…and with a smile, you were either at a Chic-fil-a, a Sonic or, a Whataburger.  

      I suppose though, the simple fact that any chain can experience the onslaught of a 200% ++overnight sales increase and still manage to impart a positive experience on 98% of their customers says a lot about Chic-fil-a.  Wouldn’t you agree?  It also proves the old saying: “2 percent of everyone you meet in your life are a$$holes.”

  • John in Fla.

    PS. sorry about the spelling.

  • John in Fla.

    From the begining, the ceo, the mayor, the protest group and the anti-protest group, all had a sever case of “stupid things to say”.  Yhe wholr thing was a waste of “news ” time.  Poeple, take a break.  Life’s to short…..OOOOMMMMMM.

    • George Hyde

       Exactly what did the CEO say that would be considered a “stupid thing to say?”  He simply stated his own opinion in response to a question.

      And, John, as far as us (the people, that is) taking a break, I submit that we have been doing just that for about 50 years and that is exactly why we are in the mess we are today.  I disagree and feel that it is time to stand up to the progressive agenda on things that matter, one chicken wing at a time!  We may not get another chance if we don’t take this one.

  • Richie Rich

    I wanted to go to the Appreciation Day but the closest CFA is 9 miles away. When I read in your article that people came from as far away as 150 miles, I felt ashamed of myself. The truth is that I was just too lazy to get my retired butt out of my pool on a scorching hot day here at the Jersey Shore. Shame on me!  

    • Artlouis

       Don’t kick yourself. You can always go tomorrow.  Be sure to order a shake.

    • dee47

      thanks Rick “The truth” what a breath of fresh air. We went looking for one and found it was inside the Mall,, Well we had our little puppy with us so we just went to Sonic.  we were too lazy to bring the puppy home and go all the way back about 5 miles.  We made up for it finally, found one a few days later with a drive thur. Loved it

  • venter

    I am looking for a CFA in my area .  Do people listen to what was said.  Mr. Cathy believes in traditionl marriage! Like most people.  Gay people  should be more worried about this  as we all should.  All this  makes me think of Hilter .The mayor of Chicago and his friend the  president felt the same way as Mr. Cathy for more than 3 years. I wonder who will be   attacked tomorrow.  Is this America?  Lets hold hands and stop these polititicans from using us as pawns.             
    A side note why would gay’s want to get married since 50% of  marriages are ending in devoice and a larger precentage  in the gay cummunity.  Their unions should be respected. I have to go find a CFA

    • Artlouis

       What the mayors did might be interpreted in a courtroom as government suppressing freedom of speech. This is a no-no in the Constitution.

      As for the viability of marriage, there is no way to reason with someone in love. Let them find out the hard way.

      Go to the CFA Web site. They make it easy to find an outlet.

    • floridahank

      I don’t think that gays necessarily “want to get married.” I believe there’s a more ulterior motive for their demonstations and demands. 
      I believe they have an unconscious feeling that their homosexual feelings are just not right — being on 2-3% of the rest of us has to create  confusing feelings regardless of what they say publically.  With some homosexuals being “out” and calling anybody who is for fundamental marriage “homophobes” gives  them some kind of “justice”.
      Also, I would guess that most homosexuals are in some form atheists, or follow some strange religious acts and beliefs.
      Historically speaking,  marriage for 4,000+ yrs has always been with a man and woman — even in ancient Rome,  Egypt, Greece, where homosexuality was not that uncommon — still it’s never been accepted as a marriage even among godless societies.  

  • waterlylies84

    Interesting that you would discuss the demeanor of the man who waited on you as “He seemed resentful. Perhaps he doesn’t like to work hard, or perhaps he is not entirely in sympathy with the reason that most people are patronizing Chick-fil-A these days. I can only guess whom he kisses when he gets home.” Did it ever dawn on you that the young man just might have been tired physically and emotionally? Did it ever dawn on you that perhaps your “gag” was really gagging? Did it ever dawn on you that you weren’t so original and maybe, just maybe he’d had enough of your type?

    Seriously, I thought this was going to be about the support/protests not a food/restaurant review. 

    Bernie, whatever you are paying Arthur Louis is too much.

    • Artlouis

       Waterlylies, you may be correct about the young man. I acknowledged as much in one of the comments below. Thanks for your own comment.

      As for your aside to Bernie, he should get a good laugh out of it.

      • George Hyde

         Arthur, this is the first that I have come across your work.  I like your style, and, moreso, I appreciate that you are willing to chat with the hoi polloi.

        I have often wondered if  Burt P was the only writer/blogger who understood that there are real people out here who are reading an commenting on their work.  I am inordinately pleased to find another – I will eagerly look forward to more of your work. 

        That is, of course, if you can afford to keep writing after Bernie cuts your pay.

        • Artlouis

          Many thanks, George. It is a labor of love. 

      • waterlylies84

        Artlouis, sorry I repeated what you apparently answered already. I don’t usually read past the first page of comments so I clearly missed your acknowledgement. I also apologize for my snarky comment about your pay. I think I’m growing tired of all the articles on CFA and took it out on you. 

        • Artlouis

           No prob

    • George Hyde

       You really ought to go have a CFA sandwich and one of those peach milk shakes.  You take yourself far too seriously.

  • James King

    Arthur, I don’t have a dog in this fight other than the right to free speech, but would like to ask a question. Did what you say in your piece fully measure up to how a journalist is supposed to be in reporting just the news? I do understand that yours is an opinion piece, making it different from reporting the news. That is not why I ask the rhetorical question.

    Until this Chick news I had never heard of them which is not surprising since I seldom leave my home anymore for more than 4 or 5 miles due to chronic pain. But I wonder about your description of your sandwich. Was it accurate or biased? I only say that because I do not know, and because of the success of the company. I don’t think they would sell so many sandwiches if they were not good, but then I never go to MacDonalds either.

    • Artlouis

      It is an opinion piece, and I didn’t hide the fact, so I felt I could drop opinions here and there. I have been thinking about the so-so sandwich, and I would like to give them the benefit of the doubt. They probably were in too much of a hurry to  maintain their usual standard. I can’t be sure, because I never ate there before. 

    • George Hyde

       That’s a fair question to ask, James.  Personally, I am not a fan of their sandwiches, but it is literally a matter of taste, as I tend to like my chicken different than the way they cook it (not sure why, but it just happens to be that way).

      But kids love it and their products are all a step up in healthy tahn most fast food places.  Combine that with their approach to  customer relations and their world class employee development program and you have a top notch company.

      If you get a chance, do some research into their training program and you will be impressed!

      • James King

        George, if only politicians were as honest as you!

  • http://profiles.google.com/exxo03 richard mcenroe

    Odd,  your surly staffer.  The one thing that strikes most of us who have been visiting different CFA’s this week is how uniformly courteous, helpful and well-trained the staff has been.  You could do worse than to send your kids there to pick up a good work ethic…

    • Artlouis

      He definitely was bent out of shape, but it could have been anything. Maybe the boss had just needled him. The other staffers I spoke with were extremely pleasant. 

    • George Hyde

      Richard, I think the reason that the 5 Idiot Mayors are so bent out of shape is that they are afraid that young people might go to work at CFA and develop, through the CFA training program, a true appreciation of what capitalism and self-reliance are all about.

    • Racourt

      I discovered Chick-fil-A about a year and a half ago in the first of 3 ten week road trips throughout the south. The difference in courtesy, friendliness of staff, and service between Chick-fil-A and other fast food outlets is enormous.
      Chick-fil-A wins hands-down.
      I live in Vermont, where there is no Chick-fil-a, so I sent money to friends in Atlanta to have l lunch on me during Chick-fil-a’s appreciation day.
      And by the way, their sandwiches are quite good.

  • Daniel

    I was there on the 1st. 
    There were at least 500 in line outside. I did the drive thru and it took an hour to order. I arrived at 11:00 and left at 12:15. Their Strawberry shakes are the bomb. I would go back for that alone.

    • Artlouis

       Lately they seem to be pushing peach shakes. Sounds interesting.

      • criolle

        You can SMELL the peach shakes across the dining room. They are great!

        • Artlouis

          That settles it. I will go back. But they are closed on Sundays. 

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/PPL2AXPXJMWPEJWFN34MPC5RNY terry

    I WISH I WAS THERE WITH MY GIRL,  I COULD KISS HER ALL DAY & NITE.

    I LOVE HER BIG !

    • Artlouis

       Careful, you might make the mayor of Chicago angry.

  • http://www.dregstudios.com Brandt Hardin

     

    If companies are people and people vote with dollars then
    the destination of the restaurant’s donations are open for public debate.  It very well should be an issue as to where
    peoples’ hard-earned money goes after the chicken goes down their gullet.  This issue has made our little feathered
    friend the modern martyr as Chick-fil-A laughs all the way to the bank.  Watch the poultry be nailed to the cross and
    pierced by the spear of destiny at the hands of those devious cows on my artist’s
    blog at http://dregstudiosart.blogspot.com/2012/08/holy-rollin-poultry-on-cross-chick-fil.html

  • GlabrousFardel
    • Artlouis

       Thanks for the link, but I already have a Kindle.