Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.

Posts Tagged ‘Chick-Fil-A

Through Thick and Thin

with 9 comments

It’s been awhile since I wrote a “Through Thick and Thin” post. The phrase still and likely always will appeal to me. Partly because it’s a reminder of a more bucolic era, it is an old phrase. Partly because I like running around in the woods and fields myself. I don’t do as much of it as I used to. Moving right along, a lot has been happening lately, so why not comment on several trending events?

Chick-Fil-A. Sigh. This has gone off on so many tangents it’s gotten truly bizarre. Note above image. Conservative black churches tend to be very anti-LGTB. So we have people who in living memory were a terribly discriminated against minority … actively advocating continued discrimination against another minority. It’s images like this that explain why the aliens haven’t contacted us yet. While I respect people’s right to oppose gay marriage, I won’t dignify their opinion by referring to it as a “defence of marriage.” Marriage is not under attack, it needs no defence. In fact, if marriage is such a good thing, why shouldn’t any two adults be allowed to get married? So much silliness though. Tortured explanations from the left as to why it’s OK to use the power of the state to discriminate against Chik-Fil-A. I still don’t think so. Claims by Chick-Fil-A’s defender that this is a freedom of speech issue. No, aside from some rhetoric, no one’s freedom of speech has been threatened. Yet. I’ve seen a mangled Lincoln quote trotted out by LGBT defenders to bolster their cause. Yeah, adopting Faux News tactics doesn’t impress me.

Granted, some of the groups that Chick-Fil-A has been funding (it’s not just their owners, the corporation itself is a big donor) have been designated as hate groups. I find the appellation “hate group” as annoying as “terrorist group.” It’s a label to demonize a group and their opinions. Neither terrorism nor hate is an ideology, so when it comes right down to it, as a descriptive label its misleading as best. It’s an attempt to frame the discussion in such a way that the other side’s concerns can be ignored. That’s not really a good way to resolve an issue. Lastly, after defending Chick-Fil-A’s right to donate to whoever they please, let me say this. They are donating to some groups that are spreading the most horrific lies and falsehoods about homosexuals. Groups that are advocating the death sentence for gays in Africa. Not cool, not cool at all. I won’t be patronizing Chick-Fil-A, and I heartily encourage others not to do so.

Syria. Sigh. I’m writing a post about it, but it’s complicated. Kofi Annan is quitting as UN-Arab League envoy for the Syria conflict at the end of the month, he claims foreign meddling by both sides is making his job impossible. How the UN ever got involved in an internal, not international, dispute is not mentioned. China and Russia support the Assad regime. The USA and the west are supporting and arming the Islamist revolutionaries. Yes dear readers, China and Russia are supporting the secular government of Syria, while the USA is arming Islamist rebels, including Al-Qaeda linked groups. The people who we call terrorists when they are fighting us. As my more astute readers know, supporting Islamist rebels was such a  great idea in Afghanistan, how could it go wrong in Syria?

The Mars Curiosity Rover sets down on Mars this weekend. Hopefully. It’s the most amazing rover ever deployed, jam-packed with whiz-bang experimental gear. If it lands OK and functions OK, it will be like the Hubble on Mars. If they forgot to convert English measurements into American measurements, or installed something backwards, it will be a waste of over 2 billion dollars. This is what the old folks called “putting all of your eggs in one basket.” I still think that at a dozen cheaper rovers based on the wildly successful Spirit and Opportunity rovers would have been a better option. I hope I’m wrong.

The Aurora shooting … conspiracy theories abound! This is priceless. Yes, it looks like this will be as good as the Truthers or the Birthers, or maybe it will be a flash in the pan, who knows. It’s a fascinating how some events can trigger conspiracy theories. Scientists are no doubt gathering data and examining this as I type, this is like seeing a supernovae. So much can be learned about the psychology and sociology of conspiracy theories if one watches one actually spring forth. In this case, the current Holmes version is that this was some sort of false-flag government operation to act as an excuse for gun control. And that the person being tried isn’t actually Holmes. Pass the popcorn.

Australia refuses US carrier base. Yes, Australia in no uncertain terms said they saw no need to have a US naval base in Australia. No doubt the USA will punish them for their refusal in some way, but it’s nice to see a bit of sanity in the world. WTF does Australia need with a US base, and all the attendant problems that go with it? World War Two is long over, there is no threat to Australia that requires the presence of an American carrier task force. And why does the USA want a naval base in western Australia? It’s all part of the militarization of the world, apparently we are going to be the world’s policemen now. I’m not kidding, Marine units are now being trained to act as world policemen. There’s so much wrong with this I don’t know where to start, so likely there will be a post on it in the future.

Lastly, a bonus image to share. This made me laugh. Have a great weekend everyone.

(The above two images are claimed as Fair Use under US copyright law. Both have gone viral on Facebook, so I think they are pretty much public domain, I have no idea who to credit them too. Heck, I could make an entire blog just from the interesting images that crop up on Facebook daily, I’ll certainly try to post more of them here in the future.)

Written by unitedcats

August 3, 2012 at 8:40 am

The Chick-Fil-A Controversy

with 12 comments

Well, once again I am at odds with some of my progressive friends. Maybe all of them, I don’t know. And this visual distributed by the National Organization for Marriage Equality pushed me over the edge, I just had to post about this controversy. Don’t get me wrong, I think any two consenting adults should be able to get married; as has been demonstrated in court any times, the only objections to gay marriage are religious in nature. This means they aren’t objections, they are bigotry. Theists don’t want to hold gay wedding ceremonies in their church, no problem. They want their religious beliefs mandated by public law, big problem.

Moving right along, this graphic is a wonderful example of tortured logic. How, exactly, does a chicken restaurant offend a community’s sense of morality and fairness? It doesn’t of course, so the comparison to strip clubs and porn shops is both misleading and odious. What people are upset about is that the owners of the Chick-Fil-A chain contribute to causes that many people find offensive. Illegal causes? Well, no. Is the Chick-A-Fil chain illegally discriminating against anyone? Again, well, no. So basically the Chick-A-Fil chain is run by people whose political opinions are unpopular with some. Great, boycott them, picket them, complain about them on line. Heck, why not just don’t let them have a business permit to operate in a city where they aren’t welcome, why shouldn’t the mayors of Chicago and Boston refuse business permits to Chick-Fil-A?

Because it’s illegal, it’s unconstitutional, and it’s wrong. Yes, the owners of Chick-Fil-A give money to causes some people find offensive. They are exercising what the old people call … freedom. It used to be important to progressives, sometimes now I wonder. Yes, in America people are free to express whatever opinion they want, no matter how offensive, and the government is forbidden, by the constitution, from stopping them. It’s in the very first amendment, and there was a reason it is in the first amendment,  because it’s fucking important. Please though, don’t take my word for it, here’s what Susan Bloch, a professor of constitutional law, had to say on the topic: “If they’re complying with laws, but as an institution espousing political beliefs, there’s a constitutional problem with the government withholding benefits from them based on a political stance.” I note though that since this news broke, the mayors of both cities have waffled and backed off some. No doubt because they got an email from their legal staff saying “Um, boss … you can’t really do that.”

Or to look at it from another perspective, if a mayor could deny a business permit based on the political stance of the business owner … business permits could be (and would be) denied routinely over whatever a mayor found objectionable. Mayors could basically decide what businesses could or could not operate in their city. Maybe some people don’t have a problem with that, but I do. And the courts and the ACLU are on my side. Living in a  free country means that there will be people who have opinions that many other people find loathsome. It’s a price of freedom, and one I am happy to pay. Don’t like, it … as I said earlier: boycott Chick-Fil-A, picket them, write letters to the editor. What people can’t do, is use the power of the state to discriminate against them.  Which is at the root of this whole marriage thing to start with, churches using the power of the state to sanction their idea of marriage.

Basically NOMEUSA  thinks it’s OK for the government to do to the owners of Chick-Fil-A what they decry having done to gays. I guess because their cause is “just,” it’s OK? Sadly I’m seeing this sort of attitude more and more coming from the left, the idea that since they are right, anything goes. It’s an attitude that used to be confined to Fundies and the far right, now it seems increasingly common across the board. Or maybe I’m just noticing it more, in either case it scares me. It scares me because throughout history that’s how leaders have manipulated people into following them, and once people are convinced that their side has the moral high ground, they can be convinced to do anything, no matter how heinous.

Am I claiming that gay marriage is heinous? Of course not, I’m decrying the idea that “anything goes” since my side has the moral high ground. It’s not exactly an attitude conducive to debate and compromise. And, frankly, this attitude is why so many progressive Americans are now supporting our imperialistic, violent, and intensely misogynistic foreign policy. That’s for another blog post though.

“I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.” —Voltaire

(The above image is all over Facebook so I’m assuming its been released into the Public Domain. If not, I’m claiming it as Fair Use under US copyright law. It’s not being used for profit, and the graphic above is the topic of this blog post, let alone being central to it. Credit and copyright, if it exists: NOMEUSA.)

Written by unitedcats

July 30, 2012 at 7:42 am