In the South, we take our fried chicken seriously. And arguably, Chick-fil-A serves up some of the best chicken sandwiches in the world. Do we really care what its CEO thinks about the definition of marriage?
Some people do. And they are very, very militant. Make no mistake, in the vicious backlash against Chick-fil-A, we see prejudice in full flower, we see censorship, political correctness and mean-spirited arrogance in plain view.
As deep and wide as differences have been between North and South throughout American history, we’ve always agreed that freedom of speech is a defining characteristic of the Republic. Our framing and dedication to that fundamental right sets us apart from most every other version of it in the world.
The idea that big city mayors, pressure groups and zoning officials would seek to shut down a business because its owner expressed opinions they did not approve of is—well—more than a little scary. It’s un-American. The time has come to pause and reflect on the slippery slope that begins with political correctness. First PC militants just check names and give disapproving looks. But sooner or later they want the power to enforce their opinions. And before you know it, the thought police are pounding on the door.
There are appropriate ways to engage in political and moral debate over controversial topics. Bullying and name-calling and threats of reprisal are not among them. The arrogance and pseudo-superiority displayed by those who disagree with Mr. Cathy’s views on marriage is almost laughable. It so obviously contradicts the liberal, civilized, cultured and educated society they pretend to promote.
Judging from the lines wrapped around the block waiting for sandwiches, it appears many Americans approve of Mr. Cathy’s views on marriage (or at least they like his recipe for chicken). But for those who do not agree with him, what ever happened to what classical “liberalism” once stood for? Remember what it used to mean? “I may not agree with what you say but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”
No, the neo-liberals of today are not liberal at all. Their mentality is more akin to the fanatics of antiquity, always ready to stone a heretic. So whatever our views on all sorts of issues. let us defend each other against the PC police. When it comes to potatoes, Chifk-fil-A’s idea of waffling is a good one. But not on free speech. Not now. Not ever.