Don’t be surprised if you found it more crowded than usual at lunchtime today and throughout the rest of the week at your nearby Chick-fil-A as the brouhaha over President and COO Dan Cathy’s comments about the sanctity of marriage continues to reverberate.
Today is “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” and Friday is “National Same Sex Kiss Day at Chick-fil-A,” but supporters for the events are at polar opposites when it comes to why they are descending on the chain’s restaurants.
Cathy’s comments in the Biblical Recorder newspaper that the nation is “inviting God’s judgment” because it is trying to “redefine” marriage have caused a firestorm of social media and public protests, and calls for demonstrations at and boycotts of the chain’s 1,600 restaurants, which are mainly in the Bible Belt.
While Cathy, son of Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy, did not specifically address the issue, gays and lesbians, led by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation or GLAAD, say Cathy has, in effect, openly come out against same-sex marriage. They’ve called for a boycott of the chain and want same-sex couples to visit its restaurants for Friday’s “Kiss Day.”
Christians and others, however, led by former presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee, are urging followers to support Cathy by buying meals at his restaurants, starting today. Check out AJC staffer Leon Stafford’s latest story on what supporters are saying at metro Atlanta locations.
Here’s part of what Cathy said, comments that were reprinted July 16 in the Baptist Press:
“I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage. I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we would have the audacity to try to redefine what marriage is all about.”
“We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that.”