These days it has been hard to get me here to post some “ponderings”. Recent events calling on boycotts as a first response to news has me riled up.
You’ve seen the news. Dan Cathy, The CEO of Chick Fil-A disclosed his objection to marriage between two people of the same gender. He made the claim that the company is run on Christian values to justify his perspective. The backlash was immediate. Many groups have called for a boycott of the business, protests are planned, and counter protests are planned. Almost every action is directed against another group with the desire to draw attention to one’s own perspective.
What a mess. This is nonsense. This is more polarization of our society. I’ve never seen it so bad.
When did it become true that if we disagreed with someone that instead of talking we protest, demonize, or boycott? What ever happened to civil discourse? What ever happened to the hard task of listening to others not to find fault with their perspective but to hear their perspective and learn from it. Are my opinions so full of ultimate truth that I must make sure that all people agree with me in word and deed? The arrogance is astonishing.
While I personally disagree with Mr. Cathy’s reading of scripture related to same-gendered marriage, I also disagree with the actions of those who are calling for boycott or banning Chick Fil-A from certain communities. These actions have further damaged any chance of seeing any change in Mr. Cathy’s stance. Thanks for making that work harder.
My experience has been that I have more influence in someone’s life and decision-making if I am in relationship with them. Boycotts and bans damage the possibility of relationship. Boycotts and bans have their place, but not as the first response, or maybe even the 10th.
Martin Luther explained the 8th Commandment (You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor) this way: “We should fear and love God so that we do not tell lies about our neighbor, betray him, slander him, or hurt his reputation, but defend him, speak well of him, and interpret everything he does in the best possible light.”