There was a time where people did not have to worry so much about the repercussions of voicing an opinion. Centuries ago, being P.C. (Politically Correct) was not a concern when you discussed openly how you felt about an individual’s lifestyle, such as being a homosexual.
Values were different back then and those of a religious nature could not even think of a man marrying another man or a woman marrying another woman. There was no one to speak up and defend the rights of those that lived against what was considered the norm and many would condemn both privately and publically, anyone that were non-heterosexuals.
Today, freedom of speech, as with most things, comes with a price. Some people feel the price paid is worth it while others have to deal with the costly ramifications. One such person is Dan Cathy, president of Chick-fil-A, who came out publically on Monday and said that he is against same-sex marriage. Since then, he is discovering that freedom of speech is not as free as he might have thought.
I have always felt that everything has a good side and a bad side to it. While something may benefit one group of people, another group would have no benefits from it. Technology, in this case the internet, has its’ benefits and drawbacks for this type of situation. Those who are familiar with Twittering and blogging love that they can have instant access to real-time news and information. They can also respond back to others about their opinions immediately and share them with others who are logged onto the website.
The downside is that an opinion that can be unfavorable about a person or business can spread like wildfire. More and more people become informed, express their opinions and could end up joining the bandwagon. When this happens, a person’s reputation can be hurt or a business can lose revenue; both in the span of a few hours!
The Baptist Press, the news agency of the Southern Baptist Convention, had interviewed Monday President Dan Cathy of Chick-fil-A. During the interview, Cathy had said he was in support of what he called the bibles definition of the family unit. He told the Baptist Press that, “We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that.” Today, the company’s Facebook and Twitter pages became inundated with comments both supporting and denouncing what Cathy had said. Duke Richards on Facebook wrote, “Hate mongers! Never again! Not another $ from me.” Sharon R. Boyd said, “Thank you for standing up for what you believe. The truth is not hate. It’s just the truth.” Viewpoints on social media went back and forth on what Dan said and appear this will not die down anytime soon.
The purpose of this article is not to voice out if I agree with Dan Cathy’s opinion. It is an example of how we must monitor ourselves when it comes to freedom of speech. Though the constitution grants American citizens this right, to do so has its’ consequences.
There are more than 1,615 Chick-fil-A’s restaurants in 39 states; including Washington D.C. According to their website, their annual sales reach over $4.1 billion. It will be interesting to monitor how their sales do during the social media “war” that is currently going on. Are you a supporter for those who feel Cathy is a hate monger and will never go there to eat again? How about those who admire him for not expressing hate but simply the truth? Should he have simply kept his opinion to himself and not say anything? What do you think?
Ed Helms Boycotts Chick-Fil-A For Being ‘Anti-Gay’
The Chick Fil chain has publicly admitted to being ant-gay and opposed to gay marriage, and this has gotten Ed Helms feathers ruffled. Ed Helms is officially boycotting them.Ed tweets Chick Fil A doesn’t like gay people. So lame. Hate to think what they do to the gay chickens. Lost a loyal fan.
Dan Cathy: High Tech for High Customer Touch – Biola Imagination Summit 2011
Dan Cathy, CEO of Chick-fil-A, speaks at Biola University’s Imagination Summit 2011.
Dan has served as President and Chief Operating Officer at the $3.5 billion Chick-fil-A since 2001 and has worked for the company for over 40 years. Dan began his career at Chick-fil-A at age 9 as he sang songs for customers and did radio commercials for the chain’s original restaurant. Today, Chick-fil-A is one of the nation’s largest family-owned quick-service restaurant chains. Dan loves impacting the lives of others and says, “Regardless of my title, I actually work in Customer Service — and with more than 1,500 Chick-fil-A restaurants led by more than 60,000 team members, operators and corporate staff, I’ve got a lot of customers to serve!” Chick-fil-A is as much about people as it is about food and rather than lead from his corporate office in Atlanta, Cathy chooses to spend the majority of his time traveling to the chain’s growing family of restaurants and interacting with Chick-fil-A’s committed team of restaurant operators and team members. Dan is a husband, dad, musician, gardener, athlete, biker, pilot, Sunday school teacher and non-profit board member.