This is Not the Way to Oppose Bigotry

One more from Dispatches from the Culture Wars, then I’ll finish the night with a Wait….What?

If you’ve been checking in for the past couple of days, you’ll know I’ve spent a fair amount of time discussing the whole Chick-fil-A kerfluffle.  (You can check here, here, and then here to catch up on what I’ve been saying.)  Ed Brayton of Dispatches points out a couple of people who are going a bit too far in their opposition to hateful chicken sellers.

The president of Chick-Fil-A, Dan Cathy, is a first-class bigot who has donated large sums of money to hate groups like the Family Research Council. And I’m all for a boycott of the company and for criticizing the man in very strong terms. But two cities, Boston and Chicago, are taking this entirely too far in attempting to prevent the company from opening stores there.

I will never set foot in a Chick-fil-A.  I think the company’s leaders are bigots and homophobes, and I will gladly take every opportunity to point that out to everyone I can reach, as well as mentioning the millions that they give to hate groups.  But as I said in my first post on the subject, as long as they follow the law, they have every right to speak of and follow whatever values they want to.  I don’t want to censor their bigotry; I want to highlight it so we as consumers can make an informed choice on where to spend our money.  The mayor of Boston, Tom Menino, and Ald. Joe Moreno of the Chicago city council are crossing the line when they talk of denying Chick-fil-A permits and licenses.  As Ed sums up:

Chick-Fil-A deserves to be strongly criticized. Chick-Fil-A deserves to be boycotted. But neither of those things violates anyone’s rights. Denying them a license to operate clearly does. And no court in the country would allow it, which means the only thing such political posturing would do is cost the cities money in a court case they can’t win. It’s time to stop this nonsense.


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