GaVo; Why we’re sick of the ‘chikin’ controversy (and why it matters anyway)

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Tom Dempsey

Aug 17, 2012, 12:35:37 PM8/17/12
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Why we’re sick of the ‘chikin’ controversy (and why it matters anyway)
AUGUST 17, 2012 00:00

Chick-fil-A protest

By the time this newspaper hits stands, it will be more than two weeks since thousands lined up outside Chick-fil-A restaurants, answering the call of Mike Huckabee, the failed GOP presidential candidate turned conservative commentator, to celebrate “Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day” Aug. 1 to thank the chain for being “willing to take a stand for the Godly values we espouse.”

It will be about two weeks since LGBT people held their own counter-protests, ranging from kiss-ins at Chick-fil-A restaurants (Aug. 3) to a day of support for Starbucks and other gay-friendly corporations (Aug. 7), and even a day dedicating to backing locally owned “gay-loving” businesses instead (Aug. 8).

In that time, gay couples haven’t broken up and turned heterosexual, Christian marriages haven’t suddenly grown stronger, and public opinion hasn’t been shifted from its seemingly inexorable — though slow — progress toward justice for LGBT people.

On the other hand, the heads of the Atlanta-based chicken chain haven’t renounced their positions, vowed to stop giving donations from their foundation to virulently anti-gay causes, or been driven out of business for being bigots.

So what was the point of it all?

Was it just to make LGBT people — including many of us in Atlanta, who already were well aware of Chick-fil-A’s anti-gay stands — feel like we are living in some kind of gay version of the film “Ground Hog’s Day,” where we are doomed to keep repeating the same controversies over and over again?

Or are there lessons we can take from this latest Chick-fil-A controversy to help our local and national movements go forward?


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