Chick-Fil-A in Wheaton, Illinois

August/02/2012 16:19PM
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Rahm Emanuel told Chick-Fil-A to get out of Chicago. He said they don’t have Chicago values. August 1st was set as support Chick-Fil-A day across America.

When a mayor, former right-hand man to Obama, tells a business to get out of town because he doesn’t agree with a moral opinion the CEO and founder has on gay marriage, it’s scary stuff. After all, the mayor has the police and the guns. With the murder rate in Chicago, maybe not enough guns. Just months ago, both Emanuel and his boss, Obama, had the same position on gay marriage.

People reacted emotionally about the Emanuel position. Business people have experienced this kind of treatment from politicians for years. Wal-Mart was banned from Chicago for years because the politicians didn’t like their non-union stand.

Rahm should have driven around to Chick-Fil-A stores in the suburbs today to see how voters felt about who is right and wrong on this issue.

Chick-Fil-A opened a store in Wheaton, Illinois last year. For days they needed rent a cops to direct traffic around the store. It was a zoo.

On August 1st I drove over to the store to see what was happening. Here are a few pictures.

I talked to the people at the front of the line. They had waited over an hour to get to the front door. The drive-up window was an absolute zoo. Traffic was backed up into the intersection. There were no parking places in the adjoining shopping center.

Wheaton is an upscale conservative suburb. Home of Wheaton College, a college where students sign a behavior pledge. No drinking, no smoking, and until recently, no dancing. Also, home of Red Grange, Jim and John Belushi, Bob Woodward, and Hubble of the Hubble telescope.  Perennial state championship high school football winner. Residents of Wheaton are not prone to protests. Still, they came out by the hundreds to show how they feel about free speech in America. How they feel about the Emanuel and Obama attitudes about business.

Wheaton doesn’t want Chicago values in Wheaton. Wheaton residents don’t want to be lectured by the likes of Emanuel. A foul-mouthed man badly in need of anger management and one who will lie and cheat to get what he wants.

I talked to a few people in line. No one mentioned gay marriage. They were there to support free speech, but mostly to support the war between government and business. Said they were tired of seeing politicians attack business. One young guy said he loved the food, the service, and the cleanliness and was there to support his favorite restaurant. I saw zero protesters supporting gay marriage.

How did the media cover these events?

This from Forbes:

In case you missed it, about a week ago the CEO of the very popular fast food chain said “We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit”. That comment started a firestorm for the chain. The LBGT community began in full force to try to convince people to boycott the chain regardless of the fact that the popular chain doesn’t discriminate against gays as employees or patrons. That doesn’t seem to matter in this case. It appears as though they just want to punish someone for his protected free speech point of view. They apparently convinced some in Government to support the boycott. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said “Chic-Fil-A does not represent Chicago values”. I guess Chick-Fil-A needs to have a few murders per day in their stores to meet his standard? Not sure what “Chicago values” are but, right now isn’t the time to make Chicago the standard for values.

For the first time in my life, today I visited a Chick-Fil-A to show my support for the CEO’s right to free speech. Today was billed as “support Chick-Fil-A Day”. I live in LA so, I was not expecting much in way of support but, I was not just surprised, I was blown away. The Chic-Fil-A in Northridge, California had a line that twisted throughout the parking lot. It was almost 100 degrees but, that didn’t seem to deter anyone. They were peaceful and the demographic was wide ranged. Blacks, whites, teenagers, kids, Latino’s and all other categories you could imagine. At this location their there were no anti-Chick-Fil-A protesters. So, how was the chicken? Amazing! Now I know why people love this place. The store was run extremely well. Clean, polite and efficient. The staff brought water to those in line, they handed out umbrellas for protection from the sun and they served delicious food quickly. This has been replicated across the nation. This huge one day movement involving millions of supporters made their opinions heard and voted with their money and presence. It has been estimated that the chain will have booked almost $100 million or more just today.

When I returned home I turned on the news to see how this would be reported. NBC in Los Angeles chose to focus on the protesters. Not the ones supporting Chick-Fil-A but, the ones protesting the supporters. The protesters are a tiny fraction to the supporters yet the media focused 90% of their attention on those few. This does not represent the truth of the actual event. The meme from the anti-Chick-Fil-A groups proclaim that opposition to gay marriage is anti-gay.   To make it worse, the fast food Wendy’s chain tweeted ” we proudly serve everyone” insinuating that Chick-Fil-A doesn’t serve everyone.  They quickly deleted the tweet as they were corrected by thousands in the twitter sphere.   The issue simply isn’t so simple. Marriage is largely a biblical or religious definition and for thousands of years has defined marriage between a man and a woman. In the past, couples were married by their church and not the state up until people began requesting legal support from the state to define their separation or divorce. For most Christians, this has never been about equal rights but about attaching gay marriage to the definition defined by the bible. Christians get married before God and not the state. The state has laws that protect and grant couples rights based on that marriage. I, nor most Christians I know have ever opposed gay couples having equal rights to heterosexual couples, they have only been opposed to the church being forced to redefine what it has recognized as marriage for thousands of years within the church. Isn’t it time we be truthful about this debate. The manipulation about these sensitive issues within our media needs to stop if we are ever going to solve this very important and very sensitive issues.


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