Jim covered Congress and The White House during the George W. Bush administration for The Washington Times, and worked as a reporter, editorial writer and columnist for newspapers in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and California. He has appeared on the Fox News Channel, CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, and many local and national talk radio shows to talk politics and policy.
Latest posts by Jim Lakely (see all)
One would be hard-pressed to find a better example of Liberal Fascism than the move by liberal politicians to ban Chick-fil-A from their jurisdictions because of the owner’s opinion on gay marriage. In fact, stop looking. This will do for a long, long while.
The flap has all the hallmarks of an absurd, ginned-up controversy by liberals and the media they control.
- Sanctimonious moral preening? Check.
- Free speech rights respected for only those who adhere to liberal shibboleths? Check.
- Bullying of an “evil” corporation? Check.
- Oblivious overplaying of the hand and the mealy-mouthed “walk back“? Check.
This whole “controversy” is absurd … but let’s first talk about the food. I get the feeling that those liberals dumping on Chick-fil-A — especially Rosanne Barr, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and Boston Mayor Tom Menino — have never set foot in the place. If they did, they might have checked their liberal fascist impulses.
Dan Cathy, the owner of the American success story that is Chick-fil-A — known lovingly in my household as “Christian Chicken” — endeavors to live his life and run his business in adherence to the values in the Bible. Cathy forfeits a good deal of revenue by closing all of his restaurants on Sundays. Yet his strong faith moves him to make that a day of rest and/or spiritual connection for himself and his employees, be they Christians or not.
As anyone who has been to a Chick-fil-A can attest, its food is among the best you can get in the fast-food genre, and the service is far above that of others in the category. The employees are competent, attentive, responsive, fast, and friendly. That exceptional level of service comes straight down from the owner who surely sees it as a reflection of his good Christian values — and insists they are reflected in all his restaurants.
Chick-fil-A’s only peer on that count is In-N-Out burger. And, in what I’m sure is not a coincidence, drink cups at In-N-Out joints have Biblical quotes on them. (Shhh. No one tell liberals. Like locusts, they’ll move on to a fresh target and try to destroy it.)
But Mr. Cathy really stepped in it when he publicly stated the wholly mainstream Christian belief that marriage is being between just one man and one woman — any other arrangements are not really “marriage.” That position, mind you, was the very same view on marriage that President Obama publicly held just six months ago — and has been the definition of marriage in the Western world for more than 2,000 years.
For Cathy’s “apostasy,” the liberal machine unleashed a firestorm. Among other absurdities, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel endorsed the idea of using government muscle to prevent the opening of a new Chick-fil-A in the city. Said the mayor of Murdertown USA (HT: Iowahawk):
Chick-fil-A’s values are not Chicago values.
Let’s be clear here. The owner of Chick-fil-A is not being threatened with a denial of a permit to open a new restaurant in Chicago because he believes in the traditional and Christian view of marriage. He’s subject to punishment by the government because he publicly expressed his viewpoint. No one would know Cathy’s views on gay marriage if not for him exercising his free speech rights, which are protected by the First Amendment.
Of course, Emanuel could avail himself of the freedom to not patronize a new Chick-fil-A in Chicago as a private citizen — and urge others to follow suit. That would be, perhaps, an imprudent use of his power of influence, but well with his rights. That is not what happened here. Emanuel endorsed using the power of government to deny Chick-fil-A’s commercial access to the city of Chicago — based only on his disagreement with Dan Cathy’s personal views on marriage.
How is that principally different from standing in front of the schoolhouse door? In both cases, a public official uses the power, trust, and authority of his office to impose his belief of what he thinks is “right” to violate the constitutional rights all citizens are supposed to enjoy.
When will the culture stop calling these power-abusing totalitarians “liberals.” They seem to never miss an opportunity to misdefine the term.