Chick-fil-A Has a Right to Open Crappy Sandwich Shop in Chicago

Let it be known, internet: I do not like chicken sandwiches, whether prepared by the employees of a homophobe or not. That is why I have never even tried a Chick-fil-A sandwich. Also I like to eat out on Sundays.

I think it is already known I do not like discrimination against LGBT people. And it is also known, well known, that I am a big fan of the First Amendment.

That’s why I’m with Adam Serwer and Glenn Greenwald on this issue of whether public officials in Chicago—including Mayor Rahm Emanuel—and other cities should try to bar Chick-Fil-A from opening new restaurants. Chick-Fil-A “disrespects us,” says Emanuel, because “Chick-fil-A values are not Chicago values.”

Can I say that I hate—almost as much as a chicken sandwich—when Democrats try to throw that “values” language back in the face of conservatives. Conservatives don’t own the “values” conversation—we know, we know! (I think Rahm is having a 2006 campaign flashback.) But since when do businesses get permits (or not) based on their religious or political views? Chick-fil-A should be permitted by city officials to open its restaurant. If Emanuel is right—that it will be empty of customers—the owners will find out the hard way. But not by giving conservatives ammunition to claim that progressives want to silence their religious views.

 

Sarah Posner, author of God’s Profits: Faith, Fraud, and the Republican Crusade for Values Voters, covers politics and religion. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Atlantic, The American ProspectThe NationSalon, and other publications. Follow her on TwitterRSS feed Email