You already knew that Chick-fil-A was homophobic, right? All of the activists have been telling you so for years, now. You may remember the Great Chick-fil-A Kiss-in of 2012. Or maybe not. That was a grand plan to shame Chick-fil-A into declaring that love is love and rejecting its Christian values by having gay people show up at the restaurant’s parking lots across the nation to play tongue hockey. If you don’t remember it, that is probably because nobody really cared. Even as recently as 2012, we still had a few priorities straight. No pun intended. Well, maybe.
Chick-fil-A is now racist because, well, everyone and everything is racist. And because the nation has become stupid. There, I said it. The nation has become stupid. We were all thinking it, anyway.
On Sept. 9, a man named Don tweeted at the restaurant “grilled spicy deluxe but still noooo spicy nuggets………… @ChickfilA…..” Chick-fil-A replied, “Your community will be the first to know if spicy items are added to the permanent menu, Don!” Judging by Don’s profile picture, Don is black. Who am I to say Don is black? I’m a guy who can see the profile picture. No, I don’t know what he identifies as. The picture is of a black man. Give it a rest, already.
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So what set off the screeches of racism? Someone had a problem with the word “community.” Someone, somewhere, with nothing better to do, decided that Chick-fil-A was stereotyping the black community as a group of people who like spicy food. 1,600 people responded and there were 8,000 retweets. And…Chick-fil-A is now racist. For using the word “community.”
The company responded by explaining that it was referring to wherever it is Don lives, which makes perfect sense. Chick-fil-A restaurants are in communities all over the country. Unless Don is a religious ascetic who resides on a mountaintop or in the middle of the desert and is involved in a life of spiritual contemplation (in which case he probably wouldn’t be tweeting or going to Chick-fil-A), the man lives in a COMMUNITY. I live in a community, you live in a community, we all live in communities.
Who has time to figure things like this out? Is this the future of thought in the United States? No wonder our children can’t read or write. This is like Scrabble from Hell, in which the only letters you get to use are R,A,C,I,S, and M. Or maybe like a word search from Hell in which the only word in the entire puzzle is “racism”. Better still, a seek-find from Hell: “How many examples of racism can you find in this picture of Chick-fil-A? After you’ve circled them all, hand the picture in to your teacher.” Look for it in the next issue of Lowlights for Children.
Besides, when I checked the Big Book of Racist Stereotypes, it said this particular one (spicy food) is usually applied to people of Hispanic/Latino descent. I think someone is guilty of stereotype appropriation.
It would be laughable, except for the fact that Chick-fil-A basically apologized. They have essentially admitted guilt, albeit by accident, and now it is open season on those poor cows that have the spelling skills of your average university graduate. The company may be showing the back of its neck for a while, saying “My pleasure.”
As a white guy who grew up under liberal parents in a black neighborhood, accusations of racism interest me. I got to thinking about racism and even the n-word after reading about Chick-fil-A and reading Adam B. Coleman’s piece in the New York Post about the furor that had erupted over students from the Landon School singing a rap song with the word in it while on the D.C. Metro. I reached out to Coleman (who is also black; I saw his picture, too), told him my story, and asked him for his thoughts about accusations of racism. He summed it up nicely:
I think ultimately it comes down to you and your heart. You know yourself and it doesn’t matter what randos say about you. The people who are poisoning the conversation want you to constantly question yourself and have you find ways to prove you’re not racist by doing what they demand… I’m not one for proving myself to strangers, especially ones that I don’t respect in the first place.
Couldn’t have said it better myself.