EDITORIAL: Stop it, it’s just a sandwich

Recent comments made by Dan Cathy, COO of Chick-fil-A, regarding same sex marriage have divided the Editorial Board of The Beacon. This week’s editorial is split in to two parts reflecting the opposing views.

Who knew that a sandwich could turn us into chickens?

Dan Cathy, chief operating officer of Chick-fil-A, started quite the fire when he confirmed the company’s stand on same-sex marriage by stating that “we are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit,” which is, by definition, heterosexual.

With public opinion shifting in favor of gay marriage, the public outcry against the chain now stretches from Chicago to our own PG5 Chick-fil-A.

Unsurprisingly, one response to his statement calls for the removal of the University’s franchise while surprisingly arguing for tolerance.

First and foremost, Chick-fil-A’s Christian leanings are no secret. Its restaurants are closed on Sundays and their toys sometimes include child-friendly Bible storybooks. Chick-fil-A has publicly supported organizations such as Focus On the Family, the Winshape Foundation and Eagle Forum for many years – all Christian-based organizations that oppose same-sex marriage.

Let’s assume that Cathy’s opinions on gay marriage reflects the belief of his organization. No one, however, has come out to say that Chick-fil-A will neither serve nor hire members of the LGBT community. This, we agree, would be discrimination.

All we know now is that the head of an organization has used his First Amendment right to express what he believes. He never said he hated gays; he simply stated that due to his religious convictions as a Christian, he doesn’t support gay marriage, a stance many Christians take on the topic.

The LGBT community and its supporters should be admired for their continuous efforts in defending their civil liberties. However, it’s counterproductive to let intolerance to dissenting opinions turn them into the aggressors of everyone else’s freedom.

If the University decides to close down Chick-fil-A due to the company’s views on morality, the University would mirror the same intolerance.

It’s a violation of the First Amendment for a state entity to keep a business out for its political and/or moral views. It would also put forth the view that students themselves are unable to form their own opinions.  If the University pushes out a company for its religious beliefs, what message will that send to its religious students? Hardly “Worlds Ahead.”

If a majority of students decides that they do not want to continue as Chick-fil-A customers, then it is their right to simply not buy their product. The converse is also true: it would be ridiculous to assume an individual’s political and moral character based on whether or not they eat a chicken sandwich.

For the opposing view, visit  http://fiusm.com/2012/08/02/editorial-chick-fil-a-give-them-the-boot/

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