Not only because it is Sunday, but because I haven’t had Chick-Fil-A in a long time. Over a year. Maybe two.
I don’t eat Chick-Fil-A because they throw millions of dollars at organizations trying to prevent my friends from having basic civil rights. While I can pay $30 and sign a document that grants me all the privileges and rights of marriage, my friends have to go to specialist attorneys and pay hundreds of dollars to have ironclad wills and powers of attorney drawn up to give them even a fraction of the protection I am entitled to. As any kid who got one cookie while everyone else got three will tell you, that’s no fair.
We have two handmade chocolate shops in my little touristy town. I only frequent one. That’s because one of them thinks tracts are cool Halloween treats. You make delicious fudge, and you hand out religious tracts? That just seems cold, mean and miserly. The owners of the other chocolate shop might be super-religious too. As far as I know they are extreme fundamentalists preaching hellfire and brimstone on their off days. But their chocolate is good, and they don’t disappoint little kids at Halloween as far as I know.
A lot of people are running around trashing Chick-Fil-A’s food. I’ll admit, it’s not for everyone. I myself prefer Long John Silver’s over Captain D’s when it comes to fast-food fish, but some may disagree with me. But I get the feeling a lot of people are trashing the food simply because they disagree with Chick-Fil-A’s really awful politics. I think that misses the point.
Boycotting something you don’t like doesn’t work. It’s like a man giving up tampons for Lent. It’s a meaningless and futile gesture. Giving up something you love? That’s putting your values where your stomach is!
When I worked in north Atlanta a few years back I was putting in 60 hours a week on average and making decent money for the first time in my life. I was putting in enough hours that I often didn’t have time to pack lunch, and so I ate out a lot. There was a Chick-Fil-A near my office. I would go through drive-through, park in a shady spot and let all the stress melt away over some waffle fries and chicken nuggets. On particularly stressful days I’d get their amazing soft-serve vanilla ice cream on a rich brownie. Sometimes I’d grab dinner there before battling the traffic to get home, which could take two hours sometimes. I would spend $50 at Chick-Fil-A some weeks. That’s enough to pay for one employee’s 6 hour shift.
But no more. As much as I could really go for some waffle fries right now, I don’t eat at Chick-Fil-A anymore. They use styrofoam and actively seek to prevent others from gaining basic civil rights. I don’t give a crap that they are Christian. I care that they seem to have less regard for the environment and their fellow human beings than the other fast food chains around.
It was hard to cut Chick-Fil-A out of my life. Sometimes a craving would overcome me and I’d just grab a serving of waffle fries on the sly. But I would feel bad afterwards. I’m not a perfect person, but I certainly don’t want to be part of the problem.
So if anyone from Chick-Fil-A HQ reads this, and I doubt they will, I would eat the hell out of your fundamentalist Christian chicken regardless of what your CEO blathers on about if it weren’t for the fact that your profits actively hurt people I love. And styrofoam? Really? You’re making an 80% profit off that soda already, spring for something biodegradable already.
So until Chick-Fil-A changes it’s policy, every day is like Sunday for me: I’ll just have to settle for Subway.