Friday, September 21, 2012

Chick-fil-A and Respect

To catch you up, a few days ago a press release from The Civil Rights Agenda (TCRA) claimed victory over Chick-fil-A, saying that “In meetings the company executives clarified that they will no longer give to anti-gay organizations.” This left many of us scratching our heads and asking the Chick-fil-A company for an explanation. Chick-fil-A obliged us with a lengthy statement that I will summarize as saying, We’re going to continue with the same policy we’ve always had. [1]

Within that document is the statement “The Chick-fil-A culture and 66-year service tradition in our locally owned and operated restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect – regardless of their beliefs, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender.” That statement is not new, but it is essentially the same wording that TCRA references when claiming victory.

What is Really Going On?

The last part of the statement just clarifies what they mean by “every person,” so it really comes down to what is meant by respect. It is quite likely that what Chick-fil-A considers is different from what TCRA assumed they meant. It is also likely that that TCRA considers to be a gay-hating organization is not what many of the rest of us classify that way. So, when Chick-fil-A used wording stating that they would treat homosexuals with respect and would not support anti-gay groups, TCRA claimed victory. But now, TCRA is upset because what Chick-fil-A meant and what TCRA heard were two different things. Chick-fil-A intends to go right on supporting organizations that strengthen families. Some people consider those organizations to be anti-gay. If you look at the science behind it, you could even classify youth organizations as anti-gay, if you wanted to. Nothing does more to prevent homosexuality than to put children in situations where there are people of the same sex who show their love for them as people rather than as an object to abuse.

What Does Respect Really Mean?

We can respect a person who is homosexual without supporting him in the choices he has made. It is much like the respect I have for Barak Obama. I respect him because he is the man the people of the United States elected as President. I respect him because of his ability to lead people. I respect him as a human being. I do not agree with his policies. I will not vote for him in the next election. I can respect a homosexual man because he is a human being. I do not, however, agree with his life choices. And if he goes so far as to force himself on children, I would not be opposed to the death penalty. And yet, even while waiting for his execution, I would love to see him accept Christ as his Savior.