Politicians decide to pick on Chick-fil-a

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Chick-fil-a has been the target of political ire in two different states in as many weeks. In late March, the San Antonio city council approved a new dining area in Terminal A of San Antonio International Airport. The agreement had originally included opening up a Chcik-fil-a location, but the council didn’t give approval until Chick-fil-a was excluded from the agreement.

While Chick-fil-a is one of the most beloved fast food restaurant chains in America, famous for it’s chicken sandwiches, waffle fries, lemonade, and excellent customer service, the company also has a strong foundation of Christian values which permeate throughout the chain.

Chick-fil-a does support organizations who share in the company’s traditional values, and some of those organizations oppose same-sex marriage. Among those groups are the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) and the Salvation Army.

One piece of the story that I feel rarely gets mentioned in media reports is that FCA and the Salvation Army happen to oppose same-sex marriage and value traditional marriage, but that is not the primary reason for the existence of these organizations. It’s a result of their Biblical values.

The issue with airports discriminating against Chick-fil-a is that there isn’t evidence that the company actively discriminates against anyone. They serve everyone. And considering the federal funds which the airport receives, it’s illegal to discriminate against a company based on their religious values.

A similar situation happened last week when Chick-fil-a was given approval to open up at the Buffalo airport. Once again, people tried to block it.

Do politicians have nothing better to do?

A person has the ability to choose not to eat at Chick-fil-a if they find the company’s values to be so offensive that they just can’t support it.

It’s also ironic that I think of the calls to be inclusive, tolerant, and accepting, but then people want to bash a company for being true to their values. It’s this idea of “we’re inclusive, and if you’re not inclusive in the way we think is right, you should be excluded.”

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Josh Benner  has a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He has served churches in Minnesota and Illinois. He enjoys writing about faith and culture. He lives with his wife Kari in St. Louis.