‘Eat Mor Chick’n’ on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day August 1
I was out of town on vacation two weeks ago when the news hit about Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy’s clarification on the company’s stand on biblical marriage.
“Guilty as charged,” he was quoted as saying when asked about his corporation’s support of traditional, biblical marriage.
In an interview published in Baptist Press dated July 16, Cathy said his company is “very much supporting of the family – the biblical definition of the family unit.”
The story took off and was presented by the media as a slam against gay marriage statement. Papers such as The Washington Post, The New York Daily News, The Los Angeles Times, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and many others carried coverage of Cathy’s interview and stance. By now, you’ve seen comments and news postings all over Facebook and in other media.
Several days later, Chick-fil-A issued this statement: “going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena” and that the company’s approach is “to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect – regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender.”
Yet that statement didn’t keep Boston mayor Thomas Menino from declaring that “Chick-fil-A doesn’t belong in Boston.” Northeastern University refused to permit the corporation to open a store on campus. Other “famous” individuals, such as actor Ed Helms of “The Office,” stated their intent to boycott the business.
So, in light of this opposition, talk show host and former governor Mike Huckabee initiated and promoted “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” on August 1. Huckabee is encouraging people to eat at Chick-fil-A today to show their support for the company that operates over 1600 restaurants, is closed on Sundays, and bases their business practices on biblical principles.
Folks on our side of Atlanta certainly appreciate the Chick-fil-A family. Many corporate employees live in our county, are involved in our churches and community activities and are friends and neighbors. I literally ran up on Dan Cathy as we were running the Old Courthouse 5K back in June. I stayed with him for about two minutes until he picked it up a notch and left me behind.
There are five Chick-fil-A stores in Fayette County, and every operator is highly involved in supporting local churches, schools and other organizations. The local Fayetteville operators have certainly been good to our church. And, of course, Upscale Pizza is a Cathy operation that is also very community oriented.
Our church is located on Truett Cathy Highway (also known as McDonough Road), and Truett’s residence is right down the road. He has jokingly asked me, “Why don’t you change the name of your church to Truett Cathy Baptist Church?”
We laughed and I told him we’d consider it.
One time, a random stranger came up to me and asked if I was Bubba Cathy. I told her “no, he’s better looking than I am,” though we do share a similar hairline. (I’ve also been mistaken for the Perdue Chicken man. He, too, has a similar hairstyle).
So I plan to stop by one or two of our Chick-fil-A stores today, maybe grab lunch at one and, later in the afternoon, buy a large peach milkshake at another. Have you had one of those yet? On further thought, I’ll also need something for breakfast.
Maybe I’ll just have my own progressive dinner and hit all five.
Interestingly, in response to Huckabee’s initiative, some anti-Chick-fil-A group is promoting August 3rd as National Same Sex Kiss Day at Chick-fil-A. I encourage you to make your presence known that day, also, and if you see any protesters or kissers, be kind, be cordial, and don’t get drawn into controversy that will create negative publicity. That’s their hope.
Just walk up to these Chick-fil-A boycotters, interrupt their smooching, and say, “Hey, welcome to Chick-fil-A. Can I buy you a sandwich?”
Dr. David L. Chancey is pastor, McDonough Road Baptist Church in Fayetteville, Georgia. The church gathers at 352 McDonough Road, just past the department of drivers’ services building, and invites you to join them this Sunday for Bible study at 9:45 a.m. and worship at 10:55 a.m. Visit them online at www.mcdonoughroad.org.