There has been a lot of controversy lately about the stance Dan Cathy, Chick-Fil-A president, has taken on gay marriage or, for that matter, homosexuality in general. In fact, the Chick-Fil-A Corporation has donated millions to anti-gay religious groups. So there is no grey area in what Mr. Cathy believes; he is against same-sex marriage and homosexuality.
Since his comments to the Baptist Press came to light, the battle lines have been drawn and where you eat your chicken sandwich is the battlefield. Personally, this all sounds like a win for Kentucky Fried Chicken or Mrs. Winner’s to me, but as it turns out, because of his comments, some are boycotting and some are vowing to eat more homophobic chicken. One thing I have a hard time getting my mind around is: why does it matter if the president of a chicken franchise is a homophobe? Does it change the taste of the chicken tenders? If it does, I’m done eating chicken all together!
It’s illegal to discriminate based on sexual preference, and as big as Chick-Fil-A is, there is a real good possibility that there are homosexuals working there. What about states that allow same-sex marriage? It’s a safe bet that gay people do work, have worked or will work in those restaurants. Furthermore, as far as I can find, there isn’t any proof that Chick-Fil-A discriminates against customers or employees based on sexual preference. So is it really worth it to pay so much attention to the personal opinions of the chicken-tender peddler? With all the buzz around this lately, apparently the answer is yes.
Former Arkansas governor and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee declared an Appreciation Day for Chick-Fil-A. According to Huckabee, the declaration was not a support of Cathy’s anti-gay stance but to defend his 1st Amendment rights. Huckabee’s actions did little to change minds, but what it did was set the stage for a media circus. The scandal-hungry media eagerly displayed images of homosexuals publicly expressing their emotions in front of Chick-Fil-A and supporters toting anti-gay signs. You could argue that either side was expressing their 1st Amendment rights, or you could say that are a lot of people out there who could use a better hobby.
Before you condemn or condone same-sex relationships, I think it makes sense to look at the reasons behind the opposition to homosexuality. Almost all that oppose it cite the Bible as the primary reason. In fact, they cite Leviticus 20:13: “If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.” Taken by itself, that seems pretty cut and dried—a good indication that God does not like two men getting it on. But what about lesbians? is it possible he likes a little girl-on-girl action? Put that one in your Bible and smoke on it.
The condemnation and killing of gay men is not the only things that Leviticus covers. Anyone who has read it can tell you there are a lot of rules in that book, and I don’t think you can pick and choose which of these to rules to honor. If you are going to condemn homosexuality based on Leviticus, then you should follow all the rules listed there. Let’s take a look at a few of the others that must be followed:
(5:14-15) “The Lord spake unto Moses, saying, If a soul . . . sin through ignorance . . . then he shall bring for his trespass unto the LORD a ram without blemish.” You have to sacrifice a ram every time you sin. You been keeping up with that? If you have, I would not brag to the animal protection agencies about that.
(5:17) “If a soul sin . . . though he wist it not, yet is he guilty, and shall bear his iniquity.”
If you sin against your own will, you are still guilty. Apparently, there is no such thing as a victim.
(12:2) “Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a woman has conceived seed, and born a man child: then she shall be unclean seven days; according to the days of the separation for her infirmity shall she be unclean. (12:5) But if she bear a maid child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her separation: and she shall continue in the blood of her purifying threescore and six days.” So childbirth is nasty, and a female child is twice as dirty as a male child.
(15:19) “If a woman have an issue, and her issue . . . be blood, she shall be put apart seven days: and whosoever toucheth her shall be unclean.”
(15:20) “Every thing that she lieth upon in her separation shall be unclean: every thing also that she sitteth upon shall be unclean.”
(15:22) “Whosoever toucheth any thing that she sat upon shall … be unclean.” So basically, have nothing to do with a woman who is getting a visit from her Aunt Flo. To some of us guys, there are times this may seem like great wisdom, as those hormones can make you want some separation time. But exactly how do you honor this rule? There isn’t much instruction on how to sort these ladies out and most women don’t volunteer this information in polite social settings. It looks like you will have to address this problem yourself. I imagine it going something like this. “Excuse me ma’am, before you touch my heterosexual chicken sandwich, can you please tell me if you are experiencing your monthlies?” Give that a try and get back to me. I’d really like to know how that goes for ya.
(19:20) “And whosoever lieth carnally with a woman, that is a bondmaid, betrothed to an husband, and not at all redeemed, nor freedom given her; she shall be scourged; they shall not be put to death, because she was not free.” So a guy can sleep with his slave or a woman that is engaged and suffer no consequence for his actions, but she will be scourged. Just for the record, scourging is not a gentle act and is illegal in North America.
(15:16) “And if any man’s seed of copulation go out from him, then he shall wash all his flesh in water, and be unclean until the even.” When guys first become aware of this little rule, they may have to take a few days off work to catch up; you figure out why. Also, does this include wet dreams?
(21:17) “Speak unto Aaron, saying, Whosoever he be of thy seed in their generations that hath any blemish, let him not approach to offer the bread of his God.”
(21:18-21) “For whatsoever man he be that hath a blemish, he shall not approach: a blind man, or a lame, or he that hath a flat nose, or anything superfluous. Or a man that is broken footed, or broken handed. Or crookbackt, or a dwarf, or that hath a blemish in his eye, or be scurvy, or scabbed, or hath his stones broken. No man that hath a blemish of the seed of Aaron the priest shall come nigh to offer the offerings of the LORD made by fire: he hath a blemish; he shall not come nigh to offer the bread of his God.” I find this one particularly troubling, a handicapped person can’t go before an alter of God. Worse than that, a blemish as small as a scab would keep you from being worthy. I have a cute little mole that only my girlfriend can identify, that by this wording would keep me from being worthy of kneeling and praying.
(31:15) “Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.” If you have ever worked on a Saturday, you should be put to death.
And lastly, my personal favorite, it’s about who we elect as our leaders: ”Thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers.” Boy, have we really screwed that one up.
Be it known, I am a man of faith. I believe that a higher power granted life to us all. How I chose to believe what that power is and how you choose may not be the same. The way we choose to acknowledge that power may also be different. But one thing we all have in common is the short amount of time here on earth to live our lives. It could be that the words I have written makes me a sinner in your eyes. Maybe you agreed with some of it. Or it could be that not a single one of us can live up to these standards that were recorded thousands of years ago for a group of people whose lives in no way mirror our own. Either way, it’s not my or your place to judge; that is reserved for a higher power. (Matthew 7:1) “Judge not, that ye be not judged.”
For every word in the Bible that is a condemnation of homosexuality, there is a word that says it’s not your place to judge. And that works both ways, straight or gay; you don’t own the right to judge. That’s God’s right and his alone. But you can have an opinion. Dan Cathy is entitled to his opinion and so are you. The Holy Bible is full of good morals if you look for them. But using it to condemn others is a sin in its own right.
So here is what I suggest you do: if you are a heterosexual Christian, and you are hungry for a chicken sandwich, go to Chick-Fil-A, have one and be proud that it’s being served to you by a Christian organization with good moral values. If you are gay and you are hungry for a chicken sandwich and Chick-Fil-A is the most convenient opinion, then go have one and be proud that you just walked into the camp of the enemy, sat down, ate a chicken sandwich and there wasn’t a damn thing they could do about it.