The saga that is Chick-fil-A and Christianity vs. the LGBT community and its supporters might be remembered as one of the most complex snapshots of modern society.

It’s a conflagration of hypocrisy, extremism and greed. We have corporate America and its influence on political agendas. We have the narrow scope of religion and its place in civil rights. Perhaps most hilariously and what will be addressed here, are the Christian, black people – emphasis on black – rushing to eat fried chicken to show how righteously they stand against homosexuality and the persecution of poor, misunderstood Dan Cathy.

When Mary J. Blige sang her heart out about “crispy chicken,” some black people rushed to call it “coonery.” Yesterday, some of those same people sprinted to get fried chicken from Chick-fil-A and were proud of it. In fact, Facebook was adorned with black folks loving that “chikin,” all to support a man who has no problem employing and serving the LGBT community, as long as he can take their dollars to financially support conservative politicians who view them as second-class citizens.

Even more interesting, and this is where things get real, black support for the Democratic Party, specifically President Barack Obama, has never dropped below 85%. But to gain some heavenly cool points, many of these same people flocked to fatten the pockets of an organization that funnels funds to Republican candidates.

Doesn’t make much sense, does it?

For some reason that I have yet to discern, it makes some black evangelicals feel better to pretend that this is a matter of free speech, a call-to-arms to protect Christian values, when it’s really nothing more than a study in financial and political gullibility, and religious elitism – or even more simply, cutting off their noses to spite their faces.

According to EqualityMatters.org, the fast food company donated nearly $2 million in 2009 to conservative groups that have anti-gay agendas.

IRS 990 forms show that WinShape, the restaurant chain’s charitable foundation which was founded by Chick-Fil-A’s chairman S. Truett Cathy in 1994, gave to the following groups in 2009:

• Marriage & Family Legacy Fund: $994,199
• Fellowship Of Christian Athletes: $480,000
• National Christian Foundation: $240,000
• Focus On The Family: $12,500
• Eagle Forum: $5,000
• Exodus International: $1,000
• Family Research Council: $1,000

Some of these organizations, including but not limited to Eagle Forum and Family Research Council, support GOP candidates, and also hold the belief that supporters of universal healthcare side with Satan.

Would you like Polynesian sauce with that?

It is true that there are many Blue-Dog Democrats whose evangelical ideology do not align with their official Party platform, instead mimicking all things conservative unless it pertains to economic equality — or as their fellow GOP’ers prefer to call it: handouts for welfare queens and thugs. In that case, though I’m sure the cognitive dissonance is deafening, please by all means stand by your beliefs – and pray that the proceeds from that large Arnold Palmer don’t go to the campaign coffers of an anti-Obamacare conservative. If the racial group most likely to suffer from hypertension, high blood pressure, obesity and diabetes, actually feel that it makes sense to change their Facebook profiles pictures to encourage black people to go “eat more [fried] chikin,” all in some misguided attempt to prove they’re up with G-O-D and down with homosexuality, then I have become convinced that the Twilight Zone in fact does exist and sanity is a subjective term.

And then there is the slight matter of “with liberty and justice for all,” that we Americans like to say with hands over hearts — unless all are different from us.

At a press conference in Washington D.C., Rev. William Owens of the Coalition of African American Pastors said, “Some people are saying that because of the position that Chick-fil-A is taking, they don’t want them in their cities. It is a disgrace. It is the same thing that happened when I was marching for civil rights, when they didn’t want a black to come into their restaurant.”

So now, apparently, it’s perfectly acceptable to equate the Civil Rights Movement to the LGBT movement. I’ve always thought so, but the opposition to the equivalency has been extremely loud. But since the good Reverend wants to run with it, let’s shall we?

There was a time, when based on religious interpretation, black people were not allowed to marry — not among ourselves and most certainly not to white people. According to crafty, self-serving interpretations of the Bible, black people carried the Mark of Cain, and as such, should remain slaves. As time progressed, we still, by United States standards, carried the mark of slaves and by legislation and society were treated as such. The Civil Rights Movement was to protest blatant discrimination that had both societal and political implications. It was to show the world that we would no longer be tolerant of intolerance, but demand civil liberties that were ours by mere virtue of our existence.

That is all the LGBT community is doing.

When religious doctrine influences business practices in a way that is discriminatory to a certain faction of society, that is a direct violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This Act prohibits discrimination based on religious minority status; and yes, aggressively — through a business entity — funding politicians who believe that homosexuality is against Christian God’s plans is discrimination. This battle is not rooted in religion at all, rather steeped in the necessity of pure civil equality and separation of church and state.  I know some of us like to think we hold the patent on suffering, but the LGBT community is no more pushing a “Gay Agenda” than we were pushing a “Black Agenda.”

I support Chick-fil-A’s — and Dan Cathy’s –right to free speech, completely and in its entirety. But every action has an equal and opposite reaction, and what I cannot and will not support is bigotry in the form of legislation. Especially from a regional fried-chicken peddling company whose ideas simply mirror the Bible Belt area in which it predominantly resides.

If you are a black evangelical who ran out yesterday to support Chick-fil-A, you were not alone. Rep. Allen West, Herman Cain, Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin all applaud your efforts. I’m quite sure they all appreciate the funds you donated that will potentially empower their colleagues’ push for more initiatives that could have a detrimental impact on the black community at-large. If that was your goal, congratulations.

As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said: “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than a sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

Swarming to Chick-fil-A to spend money on unhealthy food that will not be re-invested in the black community — all to show support for anti-gay statements — makes about as much sense as sending Skittles to Sanford Police Department to show support for Trayvon Martin. Of course, I would never call anyone stupid; I’m merely saying think before you “eat more chikin.”

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  • Jojo

    What would the parallel criticism be for the Marriage Equality Appreciation day? The author’s own double standard is clear if we try to make sense of a counter protest on Starbucks, Amazon, and other pro-gay companies. No Christians are crying are having “bible sit ins” at their entrances, accosting customers before they walk into their stores, or hollering over how wrong and intolerant it is. Some people actually have multiple identities- as in- being a Black Christian. Sorry, but your comments are a narrow truncated reality that not everybody is choosing to buy into- no pun intended.

  • truthtold

    This entire Chik fil A brouhaha is ANOTHER publicity stunt. People are using this incident to draw attention to the LGBT cause and draw emotions into a situation that to me has been completely overblown. I get the politics of it… I’m just not biting!

    If I recall correctly, he said “I support marriage as defined in the bible”. I AGREEEEEEE. That doesn’t say that I hate gays, that doesn’t say that you dont have a right to eat wherever you want to, that doesn’t say that I want to kill you. It means he supports marriage as defined in the bible!! He’s entitled to feel that way. He didn’t say anything discrimating or degrading or hateful!!

    I personally believe that your sexual orientatoin is YOUR business. Whether its a choice or by birth etc. etc. is just a waste of my energy to wrestle with. It is what it is and its been around for hundreds if not thousands of years. I honestly dont think any different of homosexuals. Although I am equally as perturbed by their public displays of affection as when others who do it … I digress. However, marriage as we know it (at least in the United States) is a CHRISTIAN institution!!! If you dont like it – use all this energy to create an institution, by gays, for gays that represents everything gays want it to!!! Maybe even create something better!! There’s definitely room for improvement. Why try to highjack this Christian institution and redefine it for your own personal satisfaction! This is not about intolerance but – I dont think its very intolerant of gays to disregard the practice of marriage as it currently stands!!! Why re-invent this 1000 year old wheel when you can make a nice new flaming pink one!! lol

    It only creates oppisition when you try to ram things down other people throats!

    • “when you try to ram things down other people throats!”

      sounds homo to me…….

    • truthtold

      lol.. no pun intended :)

  • Pema

    As a grown adult people like you make me sick J. People who are obviously lacking in reading comprehension and jump to attack those with a different point of view. I had to reread your post a few times because your rude tone automatically put me on the defensive.

    So here’s my reply:

    I don’t hate anyone and I’m not scared of gay people (isn’t that what homophobe means). What exactly is there to be scared of? Amazing how you jump to that conclusion because I say I don’t equate gay rights with Civil Rights.

    First off I said there was no evidence of Chick-a-fil donating to groups killing gays not that these groups did not exist. Your link did not disprove anything I said. The Times did a write-up of the Ugandan group a while ago. And in case you’re wondering I do not support their “cause”.

    Nope there is no parallel between Civil Rights and the Right to Marry Movement. Why would you even bring up the Holocaust? How do you make the logical jump that I think the Holocaust is overrated when I stated that I did not see parallels between gay rights and Civil Rights due to the fact that people were not being attacked en masse (Gay Rights is definitely a Civil Rights issue in Uganda). Millions of people died during the Holocaust (absolutely no parallel to gay rights in the US).

    Families kicking kids out is f_cked up but again not a Civil Rights issue. Sounds more like the personal issues of a f_cked up family (in case you’re wondering I would not put either of my daughters out for being gay).

    Getting kicked out of bars – US Civil Rights issues.

    Tortured in the Middle East – what does that have to do with Civil Rights issues in the US? That is the point of this article and my post, correct? For the record I do not like radical Islamists I think they are disgusting brutes.

    Gays/transgenders are beat-up by black gangs? Black males of any sexual orientation are more likely to be killed by a black male than a non-black one. In case you haven’t noticed our people have a huge problem when it comes to killing one another (and in my opinion that’s not our only problem but let’s leave that for another rant). Is this only a gay issue or is it a ghetto black male violence issue of preying on those perceived as weak (the dude that doesn’t hang on the streets, women, older people, gays)? Only gay women and men get raped in “lock-up”? Really? By the way I thought transgenders did not want to be referred to as gay. Is that the case?

    I will give you one thing though, I do have more privilege than a gay person of color. Unfortunately that’s perceived as a double whammy today. And that perception can’t be legislated away only time will change it. But a white gay male? I’m not buying it. Maybe I’m biased because I live in NYC and went to school in the village.

    Since you think I’m so sage :) here’s a piece of advice if you’re trying to bring someone over to your point of view emotional rants and veiled insults (because they disagree with you) are probably not the way to go.

  • Pema

    My above post was to Dana 8/29/2012.

    Oh and one more thing I wouldn’t give a crap if he said people of color were sub-human (that’s probably what he thinks anyway). Been there done that. I realized a long time ago that you can’t make people with those opinions like you. There are too many real issues out here today for me to get upset at someone’s opinion.

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