August 01, 2012

So, like you, I've been spending time today reading everyone's opinions about Chick-Fil-A on Facebook and Twitter instead of you know, doing something productive. I didn't eat at Chick-Fil-A today because I don't like to wait an hour in line for anything that doesn't have a roller-coaster at the end. As I read endless status updates and tweets, I became more and more frustrated. I felt like I needed to get some thoughts out, but I didn't want to clog anyone's news feed with another opinion on the matter. This way, you can read on, or go do something, you know, productive. I'm not now, nor have I ever been gay. I am happily married to a beautiful, intelligent, straight woman. I can honestly say that I used to be fairly "homophobic." I think that term is a misnomer, though, because I was never scared of gay people, it just kind of grossed me out. I can honestly say now that I'm quite a bit more open minded about the whole issue. I have a few good friends who are gay, and their commitment to each other despite it being a "non-traditional" lifestyle is actually very commendable. Let me start by saying, that I believe, unequivocally, that homosexuality is sinful. That does not mean that I hate homosexuals. There are many things that I do daily that are sinful, and I like myself, probably too much--another sin. I feel that this entire Chick-Fil-A episode has caused many people to use the word hate, when there are other words that would be more appropriate. I think this points to an issue that is also much, much bigger than a restaurant or homosexuality. When did the public make up our communal mind that supporting one thing meant you had to hate the other? I support the Dallas Cowboys. That does not mean I hate the Jacksonville Jaguars. I support equal voting rights for African-Americans. That does not mean I hate white people. I ate Italian food at lunch today. That does not mean I hate Asian food, or Asians for that matter. People that say that Dan Cathy, or Chick-Fil-A, hates gay people because he said he supports "the Biblical definition of marriage" are completely shortsided. If he had said, "You know, I really hate gay people," that would be reason to get upset. Without being too dramatic, this is what's wrong with our country. There's no middle ground anymore. There's no compromise. Liking, or supporting one thing, does not mean one hates the opposite. I've never really believed in boycotting as a way to make a point, mostly because I feel that the company being boycotted rarely feels the impact. Abercrombie and Fitch came to Amarillo for a while. It was boycotted because of scandalous catalogues and whatnot, and eventually left. Victory won, right Amarillo? The last time I checked Abercrombie was still in business, even as close as our step-sister to the south, Lubbock. Well, at least it's not in our town. That's what people would say, but the executives at Abercrombie couldn't care less. All that to say, "Gays, if you are boycotting Chick-Fil-A, fine, but don't expect it to change anything." I feel like your efforts might be better served elsewhere, like I don't know, maybe lobbying for political change, or maybe spending time with the people you choose to love. Now on to what is really frustrating. Christians. Let's examine where that name comes from--hmmmm, Christ, maybe? All you Christ followers should look down at your wrists and ask yourself, "What Would Jesus Do?" What did you prove today by eating at Chick-Fil-A? All you did was make a large group of people feel like you hate them. I'm not saying you do, but deductive reasoning would say that if they feel like a restaurant hates them, and then you support that restaurant, you hate them as well. I'm not saying it's logical or correct, but it's the message you put across when you puff up your chest and brag about eating some chicken. For some reason, I feel like Jesus would not have spent today waiting in lines to eat a chicken sandwich. I really feel that he would have probably been taking food to an outcast, hurting group of people (maybe even gay people.) I talked with a good friend the other night who told me that he was brought up to hate the sin and love the sinner, but that he hoped he has learned to hate his own sin worse than any other. I pray that I can learn that, too. You did not win any victories today, Christians, by eating at a fast food restaurant. Victory would have been sharing Jesus' love to someone who might make you uncomfortable. I hope I did that at some point today. Let me say briefly how I feel about gay marriage. I think being gay is a sin. I don't think getting married to someone of the same sex is. I also don't think it is the government's job to regulate on moral issues. I think homosexuals should have the exact same rights as I do, just as I feel alocholics, liars, and gossipers should. When did we all become so righteous, as to place judgement on what others can and can't do? I'm not God. I don't want to be God. I'd like to be more like Jesus, and I think he might be watching us wondering why we can't live by his most simple command, "Love your neighbor as yourself."