Chick-fil-A is one of America’s favorite fast-food restaurants. Everywhere you turn a cow is telling you to eat more chicken. Over the past 73 years, it has ingrained itself in American culture and created a space for families to grab a quick bite to eat. Chick-fil-A even ingrained itself in my life. I remember going to Chick-fil-a with my family and playing in the jungle gym while waiting on my chicken sandwich and cookies and cream milkshake. But I am grown up now and the jungle gym, chicken sandwich, and cookies and cream milkshakes are no longer a part of my life.
Ever since this summer, I have been boycotting my favorite fast food restaurant. Some of you may be wondering why I would do this. Well, it’s not that I am vegan or I hate chicken. The real reason is that I refuse to eat hate chicken. Yes, hate chicken. This summer I recognized that Chick-fil-a, as a company, has values that do not align with mine. About 6 months ago, Chick-fil-A acknowledged that they are anti LGBTQ+. Most people were not shocked by Chick-fil-A’s outward intolerance, towards the LGBTQ+ community, because the franchise is known to be a Christian organization that closes all stores on Sundays. However, I was very shocked.
I have grown up Christian my entire life and I was taught that “only God can judge you” and to “treat people the way you want to be treated.” Chick-Fil-A’s intolerance towards the LGBTQ+ community is a juxtaposition to the source of their faith—the bible. James 4:12 states “there is only one judge, he who is able to save and destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?” Chick-fil-A is going against their faiths teaching because they are not acknowledging that there is only one judge. Instead, they are trying to take on the role of God and be the judges themselves, when the bible clearly states that is not their role. Luke 6:31 states “do to others as you would have them do to you.” Once again, Chick-fil-A is going against their religious teachings because they are not giving people the grace that they would want others to have for them. I am sure they would not want companies to not accept them for who they love.
Chick-fil-A is using religion as a means to push heteronormativity and support their actions. As a Christian myself, I am using my religion to be an ally to people in the LGBTQ+ community. I recognize that there is only one judge and I cannot judge other people. What I can do is treat others the way I want to be treated. I want to be treated with respect, I want people to be kind to me despite my differences, I want people to support me. As a Christian and an ally, to the LGBTQ+ community, I must speak up when I see wrongdoing. I must fight for people to be treated fairly.
Often, cisgender heterosexuals say that they are allies, but do not put any action behind it. They are an ally when it comes to a pride parade or an Instagram post. Being an ally is so much more than that. It is about putting yourself on the front line and using your privilege to fight for the marginalized. It is about treating others how you would want to be treated. Although my Chick-Fil-A boycott has been difficult, I realize that this boycott is bigger than me. It is my way of being a true ally and Christian. Think about it… are you a real ally?