Playing Chicken

Well, I’m late to the party, but here goes: I’m not eating at Chick-fil-A anymore. Which is ok, really. Much as I loved their impeccable service, clean indoor play facility, and killer sweet tea, their breakfast chicken biscuits were not helping my diet.

This conversation has been in full swing for more than a week now, so there’s not much I can add that hasn’t been said already, by people smarter than me. (And, well, by some people who just happen to own a computer). Sound arguments have been articulated on all sides. The fundamentals of free speech; the ineffectiveness of boycotting those with whom we disagree; the gospel of marriage equality, according to Kermit and Miss Piggy. There is even a bootleg chicken recipe out there, for those who want the great flavor without the aftertaste of controversey.

Having heard–and even agreed with–some arguments for sticking with the chicken, I’m still coming down on the side of throwing my fast food dollars elsewhere. I don’t have a profound theological or sociological statement as to why, so i will sum it up in a brief conversation that I’m expecting to have with my 3-year-old sometime soon.

Me: Hey, what do we want for breakfast this morning?

Kid: Let’s go to chick-flay!

M: Well…Mom doesn’t really like to go there anymore.

K: Why not?

M: Um…You know how we like to go and play on their slides? They don’t really think that everybody should be allowed to play. And I don’t think that’s fair. So if they don’t want everybody to come play just the same, then we don’t want to play there either. You know?

K: Ok, let’s have some Crap-tain Crunch. Or…can we go to Snack-donald’s??

Baby Brother: (Chiming in upon the evoked image french fries) Num-nums? Num-nums!

So, Snack-donald’s it is. Yes, my kids have cute, made up names for food. I’m not going to correct them because they will learn soon enough that there’s nothing cute or funny about the way we get, process and transfer our food in this country. Or about what it does to our bodies, or the environment.

And if i dug around enough, I’d probably find that Snack-donald’s has some policies I don’t like. I’m certain that they have some ingredients I don’t like. But well…at least they let everybody play. And in my world, welcoming everybody to the table means everything.

p.s. For years, it has killed my English-major soul that those daggone cows can’t learn how to spell properly. So in a way, I’m not just saying yes to equality–I’m saying no to bad grammar!

My friend Lisa’s pretty biddy, Patsy Cline. Check out her blog (lisa’s, not patsy’s!) over at http://www.readinclover.com






6 comments on “Playing Chicken

  1. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that “they’ll let anyone play on their slides, and they’ll let anyone work at the restaurants, but they have the idea that some people are making God mad…”

    A more difficult conversation, but one that reflects the facts of the situation.

  2. “Welcoming everybody to the table means everything” is the best phrase I have read to date on this issue. Hear, hear. Thank you. (And thanks, too, for sticking up for good grammar, which is about as endangered these days as is basic human decency.)

  3. When did they say they “won’t allow everyone to play on their slides?”

    • it’s a metaphor…that’s just how i’d explain it to a kid. It’s kind of like in many churches, they never technically say that anyone is NOT welcome. But, there is a subtext of ‘you are not ok with us if…” Make sense?

      • I got your metaphor. I guess I just didn’t know they ever said that anyone wasn’t allowed or welcome.

      • There is a difference between saying “I think what you’re doing is wrong” and “you’re not welcome.” Jesus said both “what you’re doing is wrong” and “you’re welcome at the table” when he simultaneously called scribes and Pharisees a “viper’s brood” and then had dinner with scribes and pharisees.

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