Hi Tracy

Amy, a facebook friend, shared my post on Chick-Fil-A from yesterday.  I decided I’m going to start responding to some commenters again, and a gent named Tracy volunteered to be the first.

Having stood in line and talking to people around me, what that guy wrote is a lot of crap. We didn’t do it because we hate gays. I don’t and I respect them. What we hand a problem with, was that that community wanted to boycott the chain because the owner believes in the sancity of Marrage. And that the gay commuinty is saying to him you can’t believe in the scancity of marrage, you don’t have the freedom of speech, and that is why I stood an hour and half to get my meal. I believe in the freedom of speech. That was our message. You can take if for what you will.

Tracy even managed to score one “like” for that tribute to inanity.  I responded…

Tracy,

“We didn’t do it because we hate gays. I don’t and I respect them. What we hand a problem with, was that that community wanted to boycott the chain because the owner believes in the sancity of Marrage.”

What is sanctity of marriage to you? In this context, I have a hard time seeing how it could mean something other than “sanctity = no gays.” That’s not respect. That’s saying they don’t deserve something that you do. That’s the opposite of respect.

“And that the gay commuinty is saying to him you can’t believe in the scancity of marrage, you don’t have the freedom of speech, and that is why I stood an hour and half to get my meal.”

Freedom of speech? From the article you’re commenting on, which you purport to have read when you dubbed its contents “a lot of crap.”

“It has nothing to do with their free speech. Dan Cathy remains free to say what he wants. But when you use that freedom to express an opinion that a significant portion of the population are second class citizens, and when you spend an exorbitant amount of money not on feeding the starving or housing the poor, but on fostering a world where millions of good people are denied equal rights, you have set yourself against humankind by the vehicle of not only your opinions, but also your actions. You cannot be shocked when humankind shuns you as it is the only moral thing to do.”

You clearly didn’t even read the article, but you sure weren’t slowed from expressing an opinion about what you hadn’t read. I can only suspect you treat the bible the same way.

If your message was to support free speech, then you are a sucker. Dan Cathy remains free to say whatever he wants. Had he said bathrooms should be segregated, he would continue to be free to say it. Had he said we should lynch LGBT people, his freedom to say it would remain uncontested.

He is not having his free speech contested. Not at all. Not ever. This is obvious to anybody with a functioning neuron.

That is why I said, in the article you clearly didn’t read (but still felt moved to comment on):

“The defense is that Dan Cathy was merely stating an opinion – namely that he supports biblical values. That’s like the KKK saying they are merely stating an opinion – namely that they support Southern values. How does it not occur to these people that their values can be terrible, traditional or not? Vile opinions that value discrimination and/or hate are not “mere.” They are anathema to humanity. For those possessed by true compassion for others, not the mealy-mouthed “compassion” of those giddy to display their lack of empathy for others in the name of Jesus, we should ensure that those who actively oppose the well-being of others, as expressed in their opinions, become pariahs.”

When someone uses their freedom of speech (which is not being challenged) to say flagrantly discriminatory things that negatively impact humanity, people aren’t going to want to support you financially – unless, of course, their religion moves them to be just as callous as Cathy.

So ditch the red herrings and own up to either being duped by a specious freedom of speech argument or own up to being a bigot. But at least be honest.

Oh, and read shit if you’re going to have an opinion on it. Otherwise you’ll come off looking like an irretrievable dumbass even if you do have a good point.

JT

Conversations won’t work on people who aren’t listening.  So, once they establish they’re not going to listen, we take it public and use them as an example of what you look like when you have a strong opinion you haven’t cared to become informed on.

  • http://www.miketheinfidel.com/ MikeTheInfidel

    It’s worse than just the fact that Cathy is getting financial support for his bigotry. I’m not sure if you’ve mentioned this or not (sorry… I’m not a regular reader… I just caught this on Facebook) but Chick-Fil-A has given huge sums of money to the Christian organizations that sponsored the infamous “Kill the Gays” bill in Uganda.

    So that delicious little Chicken sandwich these people bought isn’t just financing a bigot. It’s financing the death of people in another country.

  • http://www.atheist-faq.com Jasper of Maine (I feel safe and welcome at FTB)

    Makes me wonder if these people are dishonest or staggeringly ignorant of the topic? We’ve been doing nothing but clarifying, and yet, ignored, apparently. The truth is just too inconvenient.

    You are free to say that homosexuals are evil. I’m free to say that you’re and ignorant bigot.

    • Grant

      One of my coworkers asked me if I had gone to CFA, I explained exactly why I won’t go there. Her response, “Oh, I thought it was about the comments the president made.”

      Fox news doesn’t help people understand things.

  • jaxkayaker

    The mayor of Boston wanted to ban Chik-fil-A based on its president’s position on gay marriage. That does constitute a threat to Dan Cathy’s first amendment rights every bit as much as if Boston decided to make Shinto the official city religion.

    A boycott by private citizens is merely private citizens exercising their own rights to free expression. That’s not an equivalent situation to government officials attempting to punish certain political positions using official sanctions.

    For the record, I’m in favor of legal recognition and equality of same sex marriages based on the equal protection clause. I have no problem with a boycott, though I probably won’t participate. I didn’t participate in the buycott either.

    • http://www.atheist-faq.com Jasper of Maine (I feel safe and welcome at FTB)

      The mayor of Boston wanted to ban Chik-fil-A based on its president’s position on gay marriage. That does constitute a threat to Dan Cathy’s first amendment rights every bit as much as if Boston decided to make Shinto the official city religion.

      Most of us immediately identified that as wrong. That’s not what 99.9% of us were doing or saying.

      • jaxkayaker

        Which is why I said I had no problem with a boycott. However, I was disputing JT’s assertion that “Dan Cathy remains free to say whatever he wants.” I guess he’s free to say whatever he wants in the sense that he won’t be jailed for it, but governmental violation of civil rights can take various and subtle forms.

      • http://sciencenotes.wordpress.com/ Markita Lynda—damn climate change!

        It wasn’t the mayor–it was a council member. And the mayor said that if the only reason for keeping a restaurant from opening was anger against Chick-Fil-A, they would get permission to open. So this one jerk’s mouthing off has been parlayed into a lie to make CFA look persecuted when it is nothing of the sort.

        No one is stopping the owners of the restaurant from saying anything they like. And nothing stops other people from reacting to it. Your reasons for supporting these people–who do actual harm to society–are false.

      • http://eternalbookshelf.wordpress.com Ani Sharmin

        Most of us immediately identified that as wrong. That’s not what 99.9% of us were doing or saying.

        Thank you.

        Apparently, if just one or a few people on our side say something misguided (which wasn’t even acted on, to my knowledge) the whole situation gets turned around and we have to focus on one person saying something unfair about conservative Christians while ignoring the extremely large number of people who favor discrimination against LGBTQIA people and actually act on it.

        I was reading an article (We Are Not Arguing Over Chicken by Conor Gaughan) and while the article itself was good, when I read the comments section, it was filled with people making the argument that this is a freedom of speech issue, completely missing the whole point.

  • http://twitter.com/#!/TabbyLavalamp Tabby Lavalamp

    I just caught this on Facebook) but Chick-Fil-A has given huge sums of money to the Christian organizations that sponsored the infamous “Kill the Gays” bill in Uganda.

    In other words, Chick-Fil-A sponsors terrorism. Maybe not terrorism the way we know of it, but terrorism none-the-less.

    • (e)m

      The word you’re looking for is Genocide.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Had he said we should lynch LGBT people, his freedom to say it would remain uncontested.

    Incitement to violence remains beyond the safety zone of free speech rights, even for homophobic hyperchristians (all together now: REPRESSION!)

  • gingerbaker

    “…the owner believes in the sancity of Marrage.”?

    There is a basic misunderstanding here, that if resolved, could go a long way toward making progress on the issue.

    There is no “sanctity” of marriage.

    Marriage is a secular civil procedure that can and does happen every day – without benefit of clergy – in offices at City Hall. It has to do with civil property rights.

    What has sanctity is the “Sacrament of Holy Matrimony” as the Catholics call it. It is known by many other terms, like the Holy Covenant of Matrimony. The Sacrament of Holy Matrimony is an official, specific ceremony of the Church. It is only available to members of the Church who have been vetted by the priest, and involves certain promises, obligations, that we have all heard in church wedding ceremonies.

    Lately, you will see a lot of revisionism on the net as websites, organizations, and bloggers have set out to deliberately obfuscate the distinction between the sacrament of matrimony and the civil, secular procedure of marriage. You will see stuff like “The Holy Sacrament of Marriage”. Do not be misled.

    Now, it has been common practice for many years that the State has allowed religious ceremonies of matrimony to also provide the imprimatur for the civil procedure. In other words, the State has given priests, pastors, etc the same powers as city clerks: vows in church are allowed to substitute for vows at City Hall, and a civil certificate of marriage is then produced.

    What we see today are churches and religious organizations who are trying to usurp the definition and application of marriage according to their own parochial biases. We must not allow them to do this.

    They need to realize that the recognition of gay marriage by the State has nothing to do with the rules, administration or sanctity of Church matrimony ceremonies. Gay marriage bills do not mean that their church will be forced to give the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony to gay people. They might understand the difference more readily if we lobbied to remove the imprimatur of church vows to substitute for civil procedure.

    • https://plus.google.com/113934400219974764448 Hein

      I’ve seen this argument before and it’s absolute nonsense. The Oxford English Dictionary defines matrimony as “The rite or sacrament of marriage; the action of marrying.” There is no mention that this word specifically refers to a religious or Christian marriage. Marriage, on the other hand is defined as: “The condition of being a husband or wife; the relation between persons married to each other; matrimony.”

      Also, in a UK civil marriage ceremony, the Superintendent Registrar is required, by law, to say the words: “Before you are joined in matrimony I have to remind you of the solemn and binding character of the vows of marriage.” Note, this is for a civil marriage ceremony, NOT a religious ceremony.

      I suppose it may be the possible that in common English usage the word matrimony refers primarily to a Christian, religious marriage, though I’m not convinced that this is actually the case. However, such a distinction does not exist in many other languages. For example in Dutch, both marriage and matrimony translate as huwelijk.

      Incidentally, while looking up dictionary definitions of marriage and matrimony, I was very surprised to find that Merriam-Webster defines marriage as

      (1) : the state of being united to a person of the opposite sex as husband or wife in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law (2) : the state of being united to a person of the same sex in a relationship like that of a traditional marriage <same-sex marriage>

      Maybe I’m being over sensitive, but I find it slightly annoying that marriage is defined firstly as between a man and a woman and secondly as a relationship between people of the same sex that is similar to (but not quite the same as) “traditional marriage” (whatever that may be, in many cultures “traditional marriage is between one man and as many women as he can afford to buy from their fathers).

      • gingerbaker

        Your own dictionary citation indicates that the religious definition is as a sacrament. This is exactly my argument.

        What seems indisputable to me is that the holy sacrament of matrimony is very specified, officially-sanctioned rite of the Catholic church which involves vows to God

        And here in the US, marriage is, and has a long history of being, a *completely* secular civil procedure.

        Take your advisements on the matter from all the dictionaries you want, but here in the U.S. – a country that does not have an official religion – marriage and matrimony have very different origins and meanings – and that is not nonsense.

        • https://plus.google.com/113934400219974764448 Hein

          Your own dictionary citation indicates that the religious definition is as a sacrament. This is exactly my argument.

          My point is that the fact that one particular church uses the word matrimony to refer to their sacrament/rite of marriage is irrelevant, because the word also refers simply to the “act of marrying” without any religious connotation. Trying to establish such a distinction between marriage and matrimony is pointless, since the words are synonyms. The reason I quoted from the OED, by the way, is that this is a historical dictionary which aims to record the history of a word’s usage in all varieties of English. Thus, if it is, or ever was, the case that matrimony was specifically religious and marriage secular, I would expect such a distinction to be recorded in the OED. It is not.

          What seems indisputable to me is that the holy sacrament of matrimony is very specified, officially-sanctioned rite of the Catholic church which involves vows to God

          Yes, but so what? This does not give them a monopoly over the word and in no way supports your argument that marriage is secular and matrimony religious. Also, as I said before, even if such a distinction does exist, it is far from universal – in other languages the name of the Catholic sacrament is exactly the same as the word for (secular) marriage.

          And here in the US, marriage is, and has a long history of being, a *completely* secular civil procedure.

          Note that I was referring specifically to civil marriage ceremonies in the UK. While the UK may not be quite as secular as the US (in the sense that there is an official state church), the civil marriage ceremony there is completely secular. So much so, that it is not legally permitted to have any religious content in a civil marriage ceremony; even the music played during the ceremony must be completely secular.

          Take your advisements on the matter from all the dictionaries you want, but here in the U.S. – a country that does not have an official religion – marriage and matrimony have very different origins and meanings – and that is not nonsense.

          I already explained why I think the OED definition is relevant here. Furthermore, the Oxford Dictionaries Online’s US English dictionary (which gives current usage in the U.S.) defines matrimony as:
          “(1) the state or ceremony of being married; marriage: a couple joined in matrimony. (2) the sacrament of holy matrimony” while Merriam-Webster defines matrimony as “the union of man and woman as husband and wife.” You may be dismissive of dictionary definitions, but if it was true that “marriage and matrimony have very different origins and meanings” I would expect at least one of the three dictionaries I quoted to mention that.

          Furthermore, as far as I can tell, religious leaders all over the US frequently speak of the sanctity of marriage and of marriage being defined in the Bible. Clearly this distinction in origin and meaning is not as deeply entrenched as you might like to think and any distinction you make is pretty much irrelevant. I doubt you will succeed in convincing religious Americans of this distinction.

  • Amyc

    Holy crap. That was my post. Sorry I wasn’t there for most of it, but I was sleeping in today because I didn’t feel well. You guys did a great job though.

  • http://eternalbookshelf.wordpress.com Ani Sharmin

    What is sanctity of marriage to you? In this context, I have a hard time seeing how it could mean something other than “sanctity = no gays.” That’s not respect. That’s saying they don’t deserve something that you do. That’s the opposite of respect.

    This. Thank you.

    People seem to live (or want to live) in an alternate universe where nothing based on their religion can ever be considered bigoted and where other people have to agree they’re not being bigoted just because they say they’re not.

  • adam.b

    What we hand a problem with, was that that community wanted to boycott the chain because the owner believes in the sancity of Marrage. And that the gay commuinty is saying to him you can’t believe in the scancity of marrage, you don’t have the freedom of speech, and that is why I stood an hour and half to get my meal. I believe in the freedom of speech. That was our message.

    Ok see this is what I don’t get.

    For the sake of argument lets forget everything else and say the entire protest was about the owner’s statement of belief in the “sanctity of Marriage”.

    How is that a free speech issue?

    He (still) has the right to say what he wants and everyone else had/has the right not to buy his products for that reason.

  • Paul Hunter

    So supporting intolerance is actually tolerance!

  • Mark

    I agree in that it wasn’t about free speech. That angle came as a co-opting by the Republicans to bolster the number of people participating to rally their base for the up-coming election.
    It is about playing a part in God’s blessing on a man who is remaining faithful. It is also about showing that marriage between one man and one woman is not a minority or suprising view.

    • http://www.dexterityunlimited.com/ Dan J

      It is about playing a part in God’s blessing on a man who is remaining faithful. It is also about showing that marriage between one man and one woman is not a minority or suprising view.

      Did you intend to imply that same-sex couples are not likely to be faithful to one another?

      Marriage between one man and one woman is not likely to become a minority view ever. The idea that marriage should only be allowed between one man and one woman is becoming a minority viewpoint, and rightly so: It’s discriminatory and bigoted.

    • Rory

      Mark, you really do need to fuck off. The fact that there are a lot of ignorant, bigoted yokels like yourself out there willing to put money in Dan Cathy’s pocket is not a blessing from any god. It’s a sign that decent, progressive people have a long way to go before we wipe out your particular form of revolting, sanctimonious bullshit.

    • anteprepro

      It is also about showing that marriage between one man and one woman is not a minority or suprising view.

      No, it isn’t a minority view. Yet. Nor it is surprising, for people paying attention. We all know that there are plenty of homophobes out there, and we know from the history of previous rights issues that bigots love to hide behind “TRADITION!1!!”. I really do love that so many of you Christophiles are tacking your Bible onto the hateful, bigoted side of the gay rights debate. My only wish is that people will actually remember that when your side inevitably loses. Yet, no matter how many vile issues the Christian majority has bandwagoned themselves into, no-one ever seems to give a fuck or learn a lesson from it. Maybe they will eventually.

  • Mark

    Dan J, in response to your question, “Did you intend to imply that same-sex
    couples are not likely to be faithful to one another?” The answer is no. The man who is remaining faithful that I am refering to is Dan Cathy.

    • Drakk

      Faithful. To a set of regressive, anti-human, closed-minded principles based on the wishful thinking and insane ramblings of ignorant bronze age goat herders. Your principles are not only wrong, they are anathema to civilised society and they deserve no respect from anybody.

      Off is the general direction in which you should fuck.

    • http://www.atheist-faq.com Jasper of Maine (I feel safe and welcome at FTB)

      Remaining faithful to a deranged idea that causes harm is no virtue.

      That’s the nice thing about skepticism and doubt – it allows for one to flex enough to re-evaluate and update one’s stance, if one is in the wrong.

      If the “Kill the Gays” bill results in any deaths, then this man has the blood of innocent people on his hands. That’s the result of insanity.

      • (e)m

        I would argue that anyone who spends any money at Chick-fil-a has blood on their hands, not just the owners.


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