I swore to myself I would stay away from this one. Guess I need to stop swearing, huh? I really wanted to just stay out of the whole Chick-fil-A vs the same sex marriage debate. Why? Because there is so much misinformation and religious hypocrisy and hate and political posturing in that pool that I thought I'd be better off just sitting in a deck chair sipping a cold drink as I observe the last vestiges of American common sense slip down the drain.
Well, I changed my mind. I do that a lot. You'll get used to it. I've decided to weigh in with my OPINION which is worth exactly what you paid for it. If it offends you, you are free to close your eyes, read no further and then hit the delete button which is your RIGHT. I won't mind. Actually, I won't even know. We are all way too easily offended these days which is what led to this latest brouhaha over what the president of Chick-fil-A, Mr. Cathy (no relation) said in an interview in The Baptist Press about his stance on traditional marriage. If you have not read the interview (I had to look for it...I didn't even know there was such a thing as The Baptist Press) and you have commented on this issue in some social media outlet, then you are not using common sense. Sorry, but you should get your facts straight before you form an opinion. Then you can actually have what is referred to as an 'informed opinion' rather than a 'random opinion' which (in my opinion) is pretty worthless and potentially even dangerous. Here's the interview in which Mr. Cathy was speaking to a reporter with The Baptist Press which I'm guessing he probably assumed would be read mostly by...well...Baptists: http://www.bpnews.net/bpnews.asp?id=38271
That's it. He has said out loud in front of God and everybody that He built his company on Christian principles and believes in 'traditional marriage.' He means between a man and a woman in case anyone is confused by the reference to the bible. (Some biblical marriages were between a man and a harem full of women...I think it's safe to assume that since he was talking to a Baptist publication, he wasn't referring to that.) That's pretty much it in a nutshell. Hello, tempest...meet teacup.
I never saw anywhere in his comments that he was anti-anything. Or that he refused to serve anyone or hire anyone based on their sexual orientation. (Apparently they don't discriminate in either area). He was simply stating what he believes in, which is his right. He can model his American built company on any principles he wants to because last time I checked, this is a free country. He can give his charitable donations to anyone he wants to, as well. But don't worry. Here's the good news: When you build your multi-billion dollar company from the ground up, you can give your charitable donations to whomever you choose because that will be your right just as well. Nobody says you have to like what he says. If Chick-fil-A offends you, don't eat there. That is your right. Don't eat there every day!! That'll show 'em! Simple as that. However...When the mayors of two major US cities jump into the ring and threaten to keep this company from getting permits to build new locations there based on this man's beliefs, that IS discrimination. It is also illegal. It is also bullying and it scares the snot out of me.
**By the way, if you are going to base how you spend your money on where businesses stand on moral or political issues that don't line up with yours, you might as well just start walking everywhere, growing your own food, live in a hut and give up Slurpees forever.
Now, let's flip the switch for a moment. To all of my Christian friends out there...I feel ya. I know where you're coming from and I understand the feeling of desperation as we see traditional values and morality and respect for our Christian beliefs being attacked and taken away in the name of political correctness. I get it. But what are we supposed to do about it? Million dollar question, right? But let us take a deep breath and a step back. I must now be completely cheesy as I say to you: What would Jesus do? Let me say this clearly. As a believer, we know that Jesus died to reconcile our relationship with God. Every single sin was nailed into the cross with Jesus that day. This includes but is not limited to lying, cheating, adultery, murder, stealing, gossiping, coveting your neighbor's wife and his shiny new boat et al. If you are a Christian who believes homosexuality is a sin then it was covered too. So, you say (with a plank in your eye) Living in sin is wrong! We are supposed to hate sin and reject it!! Is that what Jesus did? The way I read it, the bible tells that Jesus approached sinners and was a friend to them. He loved them and healed them and forgave them day in and day out. That was His ministry, for heaven's sake. Hate the sin but love the person. Our relationship with God ultimately will come down to Him and us. As a body of believers, we are to spread the gospel (good news) about salvation and the amazing fact that it is free for ALL. Yes, fellow Christians I said all. How about we focus on doing what we were called to do as believers and trust God to shake things out as He sees fit? Just a thought.
So where do I stand on same sex marriage? I think it's a lot about semantics. Demand the word 'marriage' and you'll have a fight on your hands. Same sex unions? I believe in the right for people to choose who they love and for them to be allowed rights that other unions are allowed. Doesn't really matter if I agree with it or not. Don't we have free will to live our lives on this earth as we choose, especially in America? There are consequences to every choice we make. Still, my choices will result in my own consequences as others' will for them. We all have to live with that. I try to live as best I can by biblical Christian principles. Still, I'm a sinner. In word and deed more often than I care to admit. I'm not anti-anything. I'm pro-human and pro-love. I'm pro-Jesus. Furthermore, I think anyone's sexuality is a personal subject that I would rather see remain a private matter discussed between the individuals involved. For the record, if you are gay and Christian people are mean to you, or belittle you I'm sorry on their behalf. Please forgive them. They know not what they do.
Now, remember...this is my opinion. You don't have to agree with it or like it. But I get to say it anyway and if you are an intelligent, decent person you will respect my right to express it.
Let's all take our common sense out for a little exercise. We could all use it. Tolerance is a two-way street. If something offends you, walk away, turn away, tune it out and let it go. Forgive the shortcomings of others. Give yourself the gift of not taking everything so seriously. Pray for the sinners and the broken hearted. Live and let live and let God be God. Believe me He is way better at it and it's too big of a responsibility, anyway. Eat the chicken or don't eat the chicken. There's no need to be offended by the chicken. God's will prevails either way. If you don't believe in God, that is your right. I will still love you and pray for you because Jesus said I should.
Peace and Blessings,