Prejudice comes with a price tag, and in the case of anti-gay prejudice, an increasingly high price tag in some parts of the country. As Adam Peck reports at Think Progress today, both Boston and Chicago have informed the virulently anti-gay franchise Chick-fil-A that it's not welcome now that its CEO Dan Cathy has announced he's "guilty as charged" of supporting "biblical" values about marriage that demean gay folks. Boston mayor Thomas Menino, a Catholic, tells Cathy that Boston is "guilty as charged" of supporting the freedom of all people.
Meanwhile, in less enlightened areas of the country--like my home state of Arkansas--both the hard right and the mushy liberal center are squeamish about boycotting Chick-fil-A and letting the business know that overt expressions of anti-gay prejudice are unacceptable. On the blog of my local statewide paper Arkansas Times, I was called a "pretentious prat" who "shoehorns" politics into discussions of food several days ago, when I referred to Chick-fil-A in a discussion of what the term "family-friendly" often communicates to gay folks when restaurants use it to advertise themselves.
Along with our former governor and ordained Baptist minister Mike Huckabee, we in Arkansas continue to aspire--and defiantly and proudly so--to keep coming in 49th or 50th in the nation on indexes measuring standards of living, education, quality of healthcare, etc. But we by God intend to hew true to time-honored "biblical principles" as we massage our ignorance, poverty, and low quality of life!
And we'll do everything possible to run "pretentious prats" out of our conversations, hiding behind cowardly blog pseudonyms as we inform them that they are "shoehorning" politics into discussions of food and restaurants, where politics surely play no role at all and never have played a role--though there was a time in my own memory when many restaurants in Arkansas either refused to serve black customers or served them only through a demeaning little window out back of the dining room where white folks ate.
The graphic: a protester in Hollywood last September, pushing back against Chick-fil-A's well-known policy of donating large sums to anti-gay groups.