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My Take: Chick-fil-A controversy reveals religious liberty under threat
July 31st, 2012
10:36 AM ET

My Take: Chick-fil-A controversy reveals religious liberty under threat

Editor's Note: R. Albert Mohler Jr. is president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.

By R. Albert Mohler Jr., Special to CNN

(CNN)–Cultural upheavals often occur in the most surprising contexts. Who expected that a clash between sexuality and religious liberty would be focused on a restaurant company mainly known for its chicken sandwiches?

And yet the controversy over Chick-fil-A is a clear sign that religious liberty is at risk and that this nation has reached the brink of tyrannical intolerance from at least some of our elected leaders.

The controversy ignited when Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy, son of the company’s legendary founder, Truett Cathy, told a Baptist newspaper that he and his company “operate on biblical principles” and “are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit.”

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Defining Chick-fil-A as “a family business,” Cathy went on to say that “We intend to stay the course. … We know that it might not be popular with everyone, but thank the Lord, we live in a country where we can share our values and operate on biblical principles.”

Media attention to Cathy’s comments revealed a radio interview he had given a few weeks earlier in which he commented that “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at (God) and say, ‘We know better than You what constitutes a marriage.'

“I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think we would have the audacity to redefine what marriage is all about,” he said.

Within days, elected officials in Chicago, Boston and New York were pledging to deny the company access to their cities.

“Because of (Dan Cathy’s) ignorance, I will deny Chick-fil-A a permit to open a restaurant in my ward,” Chicago Alderman Proco Moreno said, in a threat echoed by
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Boston Mayor Thomas Menino was just as blunt: “Chick-fil-A doesn’t belong in Boston,” he said. “We’re an open city. We’re a city at the forefront of inclusion.”

But the kind of inclusion he had in mind would evidently exclude Chick-fil-A.

New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who just recently married her lesbian partner, called upon New York University to kick Chick-fil-A off its campus.

9 religious companies (besides Chick-fil-A)

Echoing the Boston mayor’s lack of irony, she also called for exclusion in the name of inclusion: “We are a city that believes our diversity is our greatest strength, and we will fight anything and anyone that runs counter to that.”

Within days, Moreno, Emanuel and Menino had qualified their statements somewhat, promising to operate within the law and constitutional limits. Those clarifications became necessary when legal authorities quickly recognized threatened violations of First Amendment rights.

To his credit, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, an ardent supporter of same-sex marriage, warned, “You can’t have a test for what the owner’s personal views are before you decide to give a permit to do something in the city.”

Note carefully that Chick-fil-A was not charged with discrimination in hiring or service but simply with the fact that its president and chief operating officer supports traditional marriage.

Note something else: Dan Cathy’s statements were explicitly religious. He made his comments to the religious press, including a Baptist newspaper. His comments were infused with his Christian convictions, the same convictions that have led the company to close for business every Sunday.

The threats made against Chick-fil-A betray the principle of religious liberty that is enshrined within the U.S. Constitution. Civic officials in some of the nation’s largest and most powerful cities have openly threatened to oppose Chick-fil-A for the singular reason that its president openly spoke of his Christian convictions concerning marriage.

When Quinn, one of the most powerful officials in New York, announces, “I do not want establishments in my city that hold such discriminatory views,” is she also threatening the Roman Catholic Church, Orthodox Jewish synagogues and Islamic mosques?

They, along with evangelical Christian denominations, openly oppose the legalization of same-sex marriage. Cathy’s statements are completely consistent with his own denomination’s statement of faith and official declarations. He was speaking as a Christian and as a Southern Baptist, and he was speaking as a man who does his best to live and speak as he believes.

Christian groups allege threats to religious freedom in anti-Chick-fil-A campaigns

When Emanuel and Moreno tell Chick-fil-A to stay out of Chicago, are they audacious enough to deliver that same message to the churches, mosques and synagogues of their city that also oppose same-sex marriage? What do they do with the fact that their own state does not allow same-sex marriages?

This country is deeply divided over the issue of same-sex marriage, and the controversy over Chick-fil-A is an ominous sign that many of the proponents of same-sex marriage are quite willing to violate religious liberty and to use any and all means to silence and punish any individual or organization that holds the contrary view – a view sustained by the voters in 29 states by constitutional amendments.

Addressing the intersection of same-sex marriage and religious liberty, George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley has warned that the government must not be “viewed as unfairly trying to pre-determine the debate or harass one side.”

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That is exactly what some elected officials have just shown themselves ready to do. It will not stop with Chick-fil-A. Who will be next to be told to get out of town?

Disclosures:

I know Dan and Truett Cathy and other members of the Cathy family. Truett has spoken on our campus. I have prayed at the opening of multiple Chick-fil-A locations. I serve on the board of directors of Focus on the Family, which has been supported by Chick-fil-A. My son, Christopher, is a part-time service employee of a local Chick-fil-A restaurant in Louisville. I have not communicated with Chick-fil-A about this column.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of R. Albert Mohler Jr.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Church and state • Homosexuality • My Take • Opinion • Religious liberty

soundoff (3,216 Responses)
  1. PAUL

    This Is So Great. Wait Till They Bite Into This!!

    August 4, 2012 at 6:22 pm |
  2. Rufus T. Firefly

    I know I have posed this question before, but it just doesn't get honestly answered. Where exactly in the bible is Jesus reported to have spoken out against homosexuality? Where did he even address it?

    He didn't, and the rationalization by some that Jesus upheld the OT laws does not explain why Christians don't adamantly enforce those other OT laws (like sacrificing goats or wearing clothing made of different threads). Jesus was very clear about a number of things that Christians don't bother with at all, so why does it seem to go without question that it is the moral obligation for every Christian to obsess over the "sinfulness" of homosexuality?

    Please clarify why being intolerant of homosexuality is a Christian – as in modeled after the teachings of Christ – perspective.

    August 4, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
    • Bob

      Mat 5:18 "For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.
      Mat 5:19 "Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
      Mat 5:20 "For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.
      Lev 18:21 "Do not permit any of your children to be offered as a sacrifice to Molech, for you must not bring shame on the name of your God. I am the LORD.
      Lev 18:22 "Do not practice h0m0, having intercourse with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.
      Lev 18:23 "A man must not defile himself by having intercourse with an animal. And a woman must not offer herself to a male animal to have intercourse with it. This is a perverse act.
      Ti 1:9 realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers
      1Ti 1:10 and immoral men and h0m0 and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching,
      Co 6:9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor h0m0
      1Co 6:10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.
      Gen 3:16 To the woman He said, "I will greatly multiply Your pain in childbirth, In pain you will bring forth children; Yet your desire will be for your husband, And he will rule over you."
      Gen 3:17 Then to Adam He said, "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, 'You shall not eat from it'; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life.
      He created them man and woman. The command was go multiply and populate the earth. He created Eve out of Adams rib to be a help mate and said they shall become one flesh.

      August 4, 2012 at 9:23 pm |
    • Bob

      The people of God shall become numerous and prosperous. In Heb_8:8, Heb_8:9, this place is quoted as the sum of the covenant of grace made with believers in Jesus Christ. Not, I will give them a new law; for Christ came not to destroy the law, but to fulfil it; but the law shall be written in their hearts by the finger of the Spirit, as formerly written in the tables of stone. The Lord will, by his grace, make his people willing people in the day of his power. All shall know the Lord; all shall be welcome to the knowledge of God, and shall have the means of that knowledge. There shall be an outpouring of the Holy Spirit, at the time the gospel is published. No man shall finally perish, but for his own sins; none, who is willing to accept of Christ's salvation.

      August 4, 2012 at 9:52 pm |
  3. Chick Filler

    We here at Chick Filler are laughing all the way to the bank at the stupidity of fat stupid Christians who actually pay money for the chicken offal that we serve up that makes you even fatter. We fill you up good, chickies.

    August 4, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  4. Jane Yavis

    Respectfully, How is your Religiouis Freedom being attacked when you created an issue,,,,, Marketed your outrage,,,,,,,and called for a National Buy my Fast Food Day that will continue at least till the election. I really tire of this baloney – and I am opposed to gay marriage.

    August 4, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • gerald

      How is it starting this when the man just stated his opinion and next thing you know mayors are banning his company from their towns? He excercised his free speach and freedom of religion and that is what he gets for it. So he got support from those who agree with him for standing up for what he bleieved. Maybe you don't have all the facts.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Gerald – he has not been banned from doing business anywhere. Some local politicians chimed in, and were forced to backtrack because they were wrong. No business permits have been denied, and his business certainly is NOT suffering. Why do you find it necessary to perpetuate untruths ?

      August 4, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • Jane Yavis

      Gerald,,,, Probably none of have all the facts,,,,, only those they want to claim. All I know is if ChickFilet wanted the contravarsy to end, the last person they would want involved is Pastor Huckabee of Fox News,,,,,, to initiate an "Appreciation Day". This has long ago turned from anything more than a Donald Trump Style Quest for free advertising, and I think it sullies any message either side wants to deliver. It's getting old,,,,, but will continue right into the Upcoming Elections,,,,,,, Timing is everything. – Politely, if Mr. Cathy wanted to,,,,,next time he could hold a job fair for all those with little more to do than hang out has his restaurant to make a Statement. Doesn't anybody work any more???

      August 4, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  5. Thuban

    FOR THE HUNDRETH TIME!!!!

    It's NOT ABOUT WHAT HE SAID, it's the fact that, after he said it, people sarted taking a good look at Chick-fil-a and realized it FUNDS GAY HATE GROUPS.

    That's what it's about, kids. He HAS THE RIGHT TO SAY anything he cares to. FUNDING is another subject, very artfully avoided in this article, I may add.

    August 4, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Steve from Cleveland

      People are allowed to say anything they want and fund anything they want. It's first amendment. And you have a right to protest what they say, assemble on public property, and call out the companies they represent. This is the way the country runs. I'd rather be in a place that allows people to hate, frankly, than one that does not give you that freedom. Just don't hurt anyone and you're okay with me.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • Chad

      You dont have the right to fund groups that seek to preserve the definition of marriage as between a man and a woman?

      How exactly is that a hate group?

      they arent discriminating against gays in employment..

      August 4, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • gerald

      Because a group is against gay marriage they are a gay hate group? I highly doubt he funded the Church that says "god hates f-a-g-s". If the groups he funds believe the way he does then you, by your very words would have to call him a gay hater (which he is not) and therefore yes it is about what he said.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • Chadwatch, a public service

      How is funding groups that treat others as inferior and depraved considered hateful?

      Hey, by the way, have you guys heard the good news about the big bang and punctuated equilibrium? THEY PROVE JESUS! IF YOU DON'T SEE THAT YOU ARE FOOLISH!

      August 4, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
    • Chad

      NASHUA, N.H.—The manager of a Chick-fil-A in Nashua, N.H., is donating sandwiches to an upcoming festival celebrating gay rights.
      The support from franchise operator Anthony Piccola for the New Hampshire Pride Fest comes as the restaurant chain continues to be criticized for an executive's comments about gay marriage.
      Piccola said Wednesday that the Chick-fil-A culture and service tradition in its restaurants "is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect - regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender." It followed a statement he made last week that said the Nashua restaurant at the Pheasant Lane Mall has gay employees and serves gay customers "with honor, dignity and respect."

      August 4, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • Chadwatch, a public service

      Here's a cut-and-paste headline that tries to substi.tute the activities of one restaurant with what the groups they are funding (Focus on the Family, etc.) actually carry out.

      Maybe no one will see through it!

      Hey! Have you heard my testimonies about salvation through Punctuated Equilibrium?

      August 4, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Chad

      think you are missing the point..
      - Chick-Fil-A doesnt discriminate in employment
      - The group they are funding is supporting maintaining the current definition of marriage as between a man and a woman

      The "outcry" against CFA is a transparent attempt by a very vocal minority that has no basis of objection.

      August 4, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Chadwatch, a public service

      You're missing the point. PUNCTUATED EQUILIBRIUM PROVES JESUS! THAT'S THE POINT! YOU ALL LOOK SO FOOLISH!

      August 4, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • Jane Yavis

      Gerald prints " No,,, Because a group is against gay marriage they are a gay hate group? I highly doubt he funded the Church that says "god hates f-a-g-s" -– to which I respond.

      Neither Mr. Cathy nor Pastor Huckabee say that support a Church that makes that statement,,,, but their unwillingness to speak out against Pastor Phelps from Westboro Southern Baptist church is troubling to me.
      Pastor Phelps, Pastor Huckabee and Mr. Cathy all belong to the same Southern Baptist Denomination. What I long for is the courage of any Southern Baptist Leader to simply condemn one of their own for their statements. Otherwise, silence determines approval of such actions and sullies the message. The Selective outrage and excuse of "First Ammendment Rights" when it suits them is simply fatiguing.
      If they can ignore Phelps in order to avoid contravarsy,,,,,the could do the same about this Manufactured Contravarsy,,,,, and it wouldn't be a lead story every day.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • Eric

      What hate groups? I am not picking. Please explain.

      I good example would be this group because...

      August 4, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • Shiloh

      Just because a group is against something you are for doesn't make them a "hate group". Several of these groups have been involved with government committees and invited to events at the White House.

      August 4, 2012 at 6:22 pm |
    • Shiloh

      Jane Yavis – You might not be aware of this – Westboro Baptist Church is not a Souther Baptist affiliate but rather an Independent Baptist church. I don't know if they belong to any conference or not.

      August 4, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • Bob

      OK so the gays can teach fisting to school kids get funded by Soros can change laws to favor lewd behavior have every leader mandate laws for gays against the majority of the people and NEVER PRODUCE THE COMPANIES THAT CHICK FUNDS THAT SPONSOR THIS SUPPOSED BIAS. Maybe they just agree that marriage should be about a man and a woman and you don't like it. They will Keep posting that Chick funds these supposed groups which is the same tactic that is always used by gays and atheists. Keep it going although its not true someone may believe it if we say it enough times. What bs Thank God people are finally waking up to the subverted tactics that the gays and atheists use. Do you know that the gays align themselves with the socialists and also with the peds to get their agenda accomplished and they want to say something about the Chick associations I wouldn't do that when their skirts are dirtier than Chicks

      August 4, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
  6. Levelheaded

    Because I do not agree with the gay cause, that makes me a hater? Ok those who disagree with me are hate mongers for disagreeing with me. that's fair! Why does the left have the authority to deem who hates? This is crazy!!!!!!!

    August 4, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • Manda

      Substitute the word "Black" or "Women" for gay in your sentence and hopefully you can see the issue. The gay "cause" is to have the same rights as other citizens and not be treated as inferior or diseased.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • Not so Blatant

      You obviously don't understand the modern meaning of the word "hater". Yes, it can and probably IS over-used, but does not have the same context you are giving it.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      Different. Blacks and women do not choose to br that.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Manda

      You have just demonstrated what is hateful about your perspective. You must surely know that every major medical, psychological, and sociological association has made statements that being gay is not a choice. Either that or you live under a rock. You choose to ignore that because it helps reinforce the stereotype you would prefer to maintain.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      You just called me ignorant! Proves my point about intolerance from the left. It's a choice and I am aware of so called associational studies. Most are left leaning with agendas.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Levelheaded

      You Said: " Different. Blacks and women do not choose to br [sic] that. " 8O

      You know... I'm getting tired of hearing about this argument about whether it's a 'choice' or it's 'genetic.' The overwhelming evidence tends to strongly support that its 'genetic.'

      But, really, in the over-all scheme of things... who cares ? What if it is a 'choice' ? So, what ? They (gays) are not hurting you, your marriage, your family ...in 'any' way !

      Get over it...!

      Peace...

      August 4, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
    • Manda

      Oh my god. Ignorance is simply being unaware of information. Being aware of information and rationalizing it away in order to maintain your stereotypes is not ignorance, it's prejudice.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • Manda

      If nothing else, maybe this string illustrates the soft-bigotry that lies behind what people claim to be "only opinions."

      August 4, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      Prejudice is reading only what reinforces what you believe. Exposé yourself to different views. I have never protested anything but I am tired of the constant barrage of the left who believe they are the only ones with knowledge. The hate that has been shown to the right for simply disagreeing is intolerant at best and hypocritical at its worst.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • Manda

      Apparently, anyone who disagrees with what you already believe is "the left." All of the doctors, psychologists, sociologists, neurologists, social workers, therapists, etc. are not "the left." They are the experts in their fields of knowledge and their fields are based on generations of study, research, and experience. You can't summarily dismiss them all and still claim to be open to other perspectives or level-headed. You are being anything but.

      The world is not left vs. right. It should be about what is correct information vs. incorrect information. You are insisting on dismissing what is clearly the most correct information available. You apparently are doing so because it doesn't support what you want to believe about a group of people you don't like. That is why "hater" does indeed appear to apply very well.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      I agree with you. Religious bigotry against Christians not only rampant but generally accepted and passed off as tolerance.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      Manda pleaseeeee, it is not a settled fact, please stop acting like it is. The real question is not should they have a right to be gay. I really don't care if someone is gay (it's their choice :). )

      August 4, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • Manda

      And now, after all you've just said, you're playing the victim. Mind-boggling.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • Rufus T. Firefly

      Give it up, Levelheaded. I read the whole string and you've just been schooled.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Wow ...so Rufus you are the judge of who got schooled ... and you judged that someone who holds a opposing view to yours, lost a argument? Come on Dude, bias dude surrounds you.

      Levelheaded, keep going... all they have is name calling and insults.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Well said, Manda. There is ample evidence to show that hom.os.exuality is innate yet people like "Levelheaded" chose to ignore the facts because those facts don't support what he/she wants to believe. Deliberate obtuseness is not a valid excuse for bigotry.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Rufus T. Firefly

      Mark, no. Levelheaded got schooled because information and logic was used patiently to point out the flaws in his argument. It was impressive because it was mostly done without any insults or name-calling.

      August 4, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Levelheaded

      You still haven't answered my posting to you ?

      @Markfrom Middle River

      Hey -Mark ! Hope that you are well.

      You Said: " Levelheaded, keep going... *all* they have is *name calling* and *insults*. "

      Now, Mark... you know me after all these years. That is not my style. I don't need to "name call" or "insult" to get my point across. Did you read my reb-uttal to @Levelheaded ...?

      Again... I hope that you are well, my friend !

      Peace...

      August 4, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • Jane Yavis

      JLevelhead,,,, just curious,,,,,, How does the "I'm Rubber and you're Glue" concept work for you???ust curious,,,,Hate is a strong word,,,,,, to use it three times in one post says more than you can imagine.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • rick

      since the "gay cause" is EQUAL PROTECTION UNDER THE LAW, yes.

      August 4, 2012 at 6:31 pm |
    • rick

      levelheaded.....gays do not choose to be gay. even if they did, equal protection still applies.

      August 4, 2012 at 6:33 pm |
    • Bob

      To levelhead
      congratulations at standing up against the onslaught of the atheists socialists and gays. You are on track and right and just dont understand how right. They will try to suppress the you or anyone else that is opposing their views and call them all kinds of names. There is no basis for the discrimination name because they ask you about blacks in a bent logic, well ask them about marring their sisters or brothers ask them what about peds having the same rights as everyone else to marry their victims. Keep going stand up you and others need to stand up to these lies.

      August 4, 2012 at 8:41 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Bob

      HI -Bob...

      You Said to @Levelheaded: " congratulations at standing up against the onslaught of the atheists socialists and gays. "

      I'm none of the above. Bad a-s-s umption, @Bob. !!!

      You Said: " You are on track and right and just dont understand how right. "

      What the heck ?

      You Said: " They will try to suppress the you or anyone else that is opposing their views and call them all kinds of names."

      No suppression from me, nor did I call him/her names. Just pure refutation of his a-s-s ertion.

      You Said: " well ask them about marring[sic] their sisters or brothers "

      Nice use of 'slippery slope' fallacy. However, I suppose at some point, (if) it is shown, like with gays that their is absolutely no harm being done to themselves, you and your family, etc... and they want to fight for it to become legal, that's their right. Not likely, but that was just the beginning of your 'slippery slope' argument.

      You Said: " ask them what about (peds) having the same rights as everyone else to marry their (victims).

      Again... an even worse continuation of your 'slippery slope' fallacious argument. Yes, of course... "peds marrying their victims" ?!?!? Next it will be mass hysteria... people wanting to marry their microwaves, printers, driveways etc...

      Do you see the difference. The difference being *harm,* and *consenting* adults, as just a couple of the factors.

      You Said: " Keep going stand up you and others need to stand up to these lies. "

      I don't mind someone stating their thoughts and opinions, however... you better be able to back it up. @Levelheaded... certainly did 'not.' And... neither did you.

      Regards,

      Peace...

      August 4, 2012 at 11:46 pm |
  7. William Hudson

    The vast majority of Americans have the same belief concerning this issue as Mr. Cathy. In fact, your president had the identical belief just a few weeks ago–until he decided to shore up another voting block. However, Mr. Cathy doesn't test the winds to determine what he believes. He relies on the Word of God and his Savior and Lord Jesus Christ. I also agree with Mr. Cathy and will continue to enjoy Chick-fil-A's delicious food, immaculate atmosphere and courteous service. For every customer they have lost, I can assure you that they have gained tenfold. It is a fact that 85% of Americans believe the truth–that marriage is between one man and one woman as God created it. And that 85% will be heading to the polls in November!

    August 4, 2012 at 12:23 pm |
    • Manda

      Sorry, your "facts" appear to be made up.

      Numerous polls (including Pew Research, Newsweek, NYT – look them up) indicate that actually a small majority (roughly 52-48%) approve of gay marriage. If you're going to try to use facts in your arguments you will need to learn them first.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @William Hudson

      Interesting... Just saw a 'poll' on "Fox News", no less... their poll shows 44% (disapprove) and... 48% (approve) of gay marriage.

      Even... Fox News, couldn't spin this one.

      Peace...

      August 4, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by 'William Hudson' is a lie.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      How do you explain that when put to a vote, every state it has been on the ballot, it was defeated? Getout the votes forts?
      Not likely. 32 states with very different electorate and different years. So are the polls wrong?
      I think so!!!!

      August 4, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • Levelheaded

      I personally think people lie to the pollsters because they are afraid of being called some of the names being used here. The gay agenda could learn a lot from Martin luther king instead of this constant hate towards those who chose to be moral. Good thing Civil Rights movement is not happening today because he would be dismissed as radical religious right preacher.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Levelheaded

      You Said: " I personally think people lie to the pollsters because they are afraid of being called some of the names being used here. "

      Really ? Is this your 'just' your personal *opinion* ? Remember, take another look at the latest #'s that I just saw this morning from "Fox News."

      You Said: " The gay agenda could learn a lot from Martin luther king instead of this constant hate towards those who chose to be moral."

      Invoking Dr. King ? What even makes you think that Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King would be "against" gays ? Very curious to hear your response on this.

      You talked about "moral"... That is 'your' definition of "moral." It is not an 'objective' viewpoint. Consenting Gays/lesbians that 'love' each other and want to be together, ... is no less "moral" than straights wanting to be together because of love.

      You Said: " Good thing Civil Rights movement is not happening today because he would be dismissed as radical religious right preacher. "

      Again... see my answer to you above.

      Peace...

      August 4, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • Manda

      Levelheaded, I don't remember who to attribute this quote to, but it certainly seems to apply: You have every right to your own opinions, but you do not have the right to your own facts.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • Shiloh

      If there is such a majority then why have 31 states voted against it, including the most recent in NC. That should say something.

      August 4, 2012 at 6:40 pm |
  8. Chiniquy

    And Lot, [too, was inspired by US] when he said unto his people: “Verily, you commit perversions such as none in all the world has ever committed before you!

    Must you indeed approach men [with lust], and thus cut across the way [of nature]? and must you commit these shameful deeds in your [open] assemblies?” But his people’s only answer was, “Bring down upon us G-D’s chastisement, if you are a man of truth!”

    [And] he prayed: “O my Lord-Sustainer! Assist Thou me against these people who spread corrup­tion

    And so, when OUR [heavenly] Messengers came to Abraham with the glad tiding [of the birth of Isaac],
    they [also] said, “Behold, we are about to destroy the people of that land, for its people are truly evildoers!”

    [And when Abraham] exclaimed, “But Lot lives there!” – they answered: We know fully well who is there; most certainly we shall save him and his household – all but his wife: she will indeed be among those that stay behind.”

    And when OUR messengers came unto Lot, he was sorely grieved on their account, seeing that it was beyond his power to shield them; but they said: “Fear not, and grieve not! Behold, we shall save you and your household – all but your wife: she will indeed be among those that stay behind.

    Verily, we shall bring down upon the people of this land a horror from heaven in retaliation for all their sinful doings!”
    And [so it happened; and] thereof, indeed, WE have left a clear sign for people who use their reason.

    August 4, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
    • Jean

      I think people in this country should take into account the disasters that have inundated our country in the past several years. People do not want to think God will punish us for our sins but He will and He does. He has every right to and He must. He is a righteous and Holy God and cannot dismiss our sins. He loves us but He cannot allow us to commit every conceivable sin and leave us unpunished for it. If He did , He would not be the great God that He is. This is hard for the unsaved to understand because of the "scales" covering their eyes. Christians everywhere must turn to Him as in 2nd.Chronicles 7:14. He is God and His will shall be done.

      August 4, 2012 at 12:23 pm |
    • cyn

      lol

      August 4, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • Bob

      So, Jean, your god was "punishing" all those millions of apparently innocent kids that have died from starvation and disease in Africa, just to cite a few million examples? Wow, it's quite the ass hole that you worship -perhaps you are gay then.

      August 4, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Sigh. There is more evidence that people are born gay than there is evidence to support the existence of any god. Why not look at the REAL reason this nation is suffering? Greed, ignorance, complacency, overpopulation, the deliberate efforts by politicians to divide the country.... Why not do something to fix the problem instead of hiding under a rock, praying for some supernatural power to save you?

      August 4, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
  9. seriously?

    Anyone notice that the writer of this op-ed omitted a key fact - namely, that CFA donates some of its corporate profits to anti-equality groups? The huge reaction and boycott is not solely about what Cathy said - it's about where patrons' dollars are going. I can't believe CNN even posted this op-ed - it's one thing to have an opinion, but it's another to pretend that inconvenient facts don't exist.

    August 4, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Bob

      Just because they donate to groups that you don't agree with doesn't make them bad as for distorting or hiding the truth we see that here from the gays, atheists and socialists all the time. They actually do it maliciously and deliberately to the Bible to the facts of the gay agenda and to every situation that they want to endorse. Couple this with lies, violence and manipulation and you get a good picture of the gay agenda.

      August 4, 2012 at 10:54 am |
    • CarrotCakeMan

      The anti-gay owner aids and abets vote fraud. He knows these MILLIONS he "donates" annually to anti-gay Hate Cults is used to throw elections. Anti-gays pretend they don't know about that. By trying once again to cover up Mr. Cathy's sleazy slush fund of millions in corporate profits which Mr. Cathy knew was being used to commit vote fraud, Bob shows he also supports vote fraud as long as he thinks he's profiting.

      Spare us your anti-gay Hate Speech, Bob, if we wanted to read that we'd go to your favorite anti-gay Hate Cult where you copied those lies you pasted here.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:05 am |
    • Wenco

      CarrotCakedude. What the heck are you talking about? It is the left that manages to find ways to get dead people to vote, non-citizens to vote. That is outright voter fraud. Giving money to organizations doesn't fill in the ballot. People fill in the ballot.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:19 am |
    • Jean

      God was here long before the CFA, CNN or anything else you could bring up. He will have the final say in all matters!

      August 4, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Jean, which god? Literally thousands of gods existed before your god was invented. The hindu pantheon is older than the judeo-christian tradition. Your god is a fairly recent and completely absent presence. He was performing miracles right and left back before the bible was written, but seemed to stop completely once words got down on paper.

      August 4, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
  10. Bob

    Gay mindset is a abomination to God ,He created them man and woman. The command was go multiply and populate the earth. He created Eve out of Adams rib to be a help mate and said they shall become one flesh. There are so many commands of God that the gay relationship doesn't fulfill. It also doesn't fulfill any of the spiritual requirements for a relationship and is contrary to How God set things up to be. That is why we see so much hate on the sides of the atheists and gays because they cannot conform to Gods plans and know it. I am kind of interested in when we see that in these two passages the spiritual implications of copulation with someone I wonder how God will view gays as one flesh or maybe that your bodies are the members of Christ when we know that God and Christ are holy. So how can the gay relationship be holy when its not how God established a relationship to be? These passages are for a ho-oker but we see a pattern that in a relationship that there is copulation that we join ourselves to that person no matter how long we are with that person. We create a spiritual tie with that person so how is it that the gays think that this will be ok by God. A Holy and awesome God that no sin will enter His presence and only by the blood of Jesus can we go into the very throne room. That in the Old Testament priests had to tie a rope on there leg in case God found sin in their lives and they died offering worship to Him. How far off in this light is the poster of this article and the gays here.
    1Co_6:15 Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take away the members of Christ and make them members of a ho–oker? May it never be!
    1Co_6:16 Or do you not know that the one who joins himself to a ho-oker is one body with her? For He says, "THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH."
    NO one can do what they want contrary to Gods laws and desires that put their stamp of approval on it and say that God will accept it. Its not only because God thinks that the gay act not gays are a abomination but it is contrary to how God set this world to function. Love is great love outside of the norms and commands that God has set up is wrong. So all the distortions only address maybe one sentence when you start to get the big picture of how God really set this world up you understand that what God has made man can distort but it will never be acceptable to those with a heart after God.
    Rebeldon
    What a great post you did thanks so much it is so nice when the truth illuminates the darkest corners of lies and we laugh. I also love that no one has voted for gay marriage that it had to be forced on everyone by the legal system and repeal the peoples true feelings in votes but this is not addressed here either.

    August 4, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • shamgar50

      In leviticus it says adulterers should be put to death. Are you pushing just as hard for this also. Or does the fact that it's mostly a sin committed by straights, make it easier to swallow (no pun intended).

      August 4, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • truth be told

      What you are missing shamgar is the topic of the day is not adultery, that said the purpose of the law is to illustrate our separation from God by sin. All sin is deserving of death, the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

      August 4, 2012 at 10:55 am |
    • Bob

      Shamoo50 your not worth the time for a discussion go learn and reread some of the posts and you will see this has been covered.

      August 4, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • shamgar50

      Blob, there are over 2700 posts (at this time). Don't really have time to read them all.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:00 am |
    • CarrotCakeMan

      I don't believe Bob is even a Christian, he's just looking for some excuse, some "biblical cover" for his real agenda, which is to HURT his fellow Americans who are LGBT.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:07 am |
  11. Rebeldon

    I don't see a problem with the 2% to 5% Gay population not shopping at Christian establishments. That little group sure makes a big noise doesn't it? Great marketing job. Awesome. Very impressive for such a small percentage of the population to be able to make itself heard. I re-call a large city newspaper publishing a full Front page color photo of 1,100 gays marching for their rights (which are the same as you and me by the way, or do we make different rights for Jews, Muslims, etc) A month later 15,000 marched for Jesus in the same city and the the little side bar note was found 8 to 9 pages in. Bias medial Nah! Did the straights get upset; no. SHOULD HAVE!!!! I wonder what would happen if the other 95% non-gay folks stop supporting Gay establishments. You don't hear the straights threatening to do that. History teaches that man (meaning both women and men) learn nothing from history. All Nations that have fallen from within have three commonalities. Rejecting God, Accepting Perversion as normal and worshiping their Entertainers.

    August 4, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • shamgar50

      A lot of people, other than gays support gay rights. So a boycott has the potential to be much larger than you think. Did you think anyone that wasn't gay, automatically thought like you?

      August 4, 2012 at 10:16 am |
    • shamgar50

      When Rome fell, it had fully embraced christianity, and rejected much of the decadence that had been a part of Roman life. Read a book!

      August 4, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • Bob

      shamoo50
      Now that's really funny Rome fully embraced Christianity LOL LOL what a joke you talk about reading. I will ask this who was it that had all the Apostle thrown in prison or killed? Why was John on the island of Patmos?? Whos soldiers were there that Crucified Jesus your lack of knowledge boarders on insanity.

      August 4, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • shamgar50

      Blob, Same advice. Read a book.

      August 4, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • Bob

      Shamoo50 care to answer the question then you may be worth a dialog

      August 4, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Wenco

      Rome did not fully embrace Christianity. Just because Constantine and his mother Helena did, the empire as a whole had already started to deteriorate under the debauchery and tyranny of the Caesars.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:00 am |
    • CarrotCakeMan

      It seems to me Bob is more interested in picking a fight than having a discussion.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • Not so Blatant

      Don't know where you got the "little" 2-5%, the more actual number as believed by the modern psychiatric community is about 10% in each and every population on the planet. Whether they are overt or hidden, one may never know, but under private studies where there is no recrimination, the numbers come out higher than 5%. I do agree with you however in that people do not have to shop at "Christian" establishments, but this is not about shopping, rather that all are given the same amount of fairness that makes this country a beacon over others that don't even try to do right by all in their country.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  12. shamgar50

    This is a typical reaction to criticism of religion. No one is threatening religion or religious freedom. Bigotry, no matter what the origin, or cause should not be tolerated. When you speak, or write in an effort to promote that bigotry, you should be called out on it. In most cases, opposition to "Gay rights" is bigotry hiding behind religion. Claiming it's part of your religious conviction, doesn't give you a free pass.

    Religious groups rant and rave about their rights being violated, yet are eager to have the force of law attached to their bigotry, thereby truly violating the rights of ALL Americans.

    Believe what you want, but don't expect me to respect your bigotry.

    August 4, 2012 at 10:00 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Well said and as it should be. I have friends in the buybull belt in Texas who are lesbian and since all this came out with Chic-A-Bigot they have endured unnecessary scrutiny by people who once loved them and are now judging them based strictly on belief...it's sad to see some good loving people be hurt so bad.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:08 am |
    • Wenco

      Shamgar. I don't agree with everything Bob has said. However it is YOUR side that has hijacked the whole issue here which is not about religion but about the government deciding who it wll and will not allow to open a business. If and when Chick-fil-a discriminates against an employee or customer based on what they believe then I'm with the city 100% then they don't deserve a business license.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:11 am |
    • Not so Blatant

      I'm sorry but I have to step in and ask Wenco, where exactly did you get the idea that some group has "HIJACKED" (sic) this issue. It's a contentious issue and pointing fingers and shouting does not lead anyone to believe your point of view. There are too many issues that are grey versus black and white in the Bible and next time your children get out of hand, make sure you stone them like it calls for in the Old Testament. P.S. How do modern Christians excuse King Solomon for his harems? A sin is a sin is a sin, there are no different levels.

      August 4, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  13. Grant

    What you've done there, Mohler, is you've confused the right to religious liberty with right to politically campaign – using both speech and tangible financial donations – against the religious liberty of others. You talk about freedom of religion, but what you mean is freedom for *your* religion, and denial of liberty for all the faiths who consider gay marriage a sacrament and not an abomination.

    August 4, 2012 at 9:05 am |
    • Wenco

      Extrapolating a little too far aren't you Grant? Regardless of how much you hate where their position lies and how they spend their money they aren't the government. I've watched these responses from so many of the left who don't stay on point and immediately default back to redefining hate and whining about folks who choose to believe and spend their money a different way then they do.

      August 4, 2012 at 9:28 am |
    • Bob

      The left are only tolerant as long as you agree with them otherwise you are a bigot and actually you will find that they are pushing socialism and don't want to admit that this country is a Republic. Sad just Sad.

      August 4, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • CarrotCakeMan

      We see that anti-gay posters don't want to talk about the sad fact that the few remaining anti-gay "churches" are perfectly happy to violate not only IRS 503c3 regulations to interfere in political campaigns but that they are being caught committing criminal acts in violation of campaign finance and disclosure laws to THROW these dirty anti-gay Hate Votes.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:12 am |
  14. harinder

    hypcracy of right wing nuts is astounding. When Dixie chicks crticised George Bush jr over war in iraq, their carrier was
    ruibed by these nuts. why are they crying when it si their turn

    August 4, 2012 at 8:58 am |
  15. sir_ken_g

    Ah yes the christian victim card. What bull. You are free to be as big a bigot as you please – let us all know – but don't expect it to have no consequences. Chick_fulla_hare for one will be going out of business.

    August 4, 2012 at 8:38 am |
  16. JustWho

    do you think you are? Bet you believe the earth is still flat. Your SB church in Mississippi is a prime example of your hypocrisies.

    August 4, 2012 at 8:30 am |
  17. Aunti E

    I am reading all these posts at 3:34AM and noticing the time of most of the posts. I have a question, do you people not have jobs or is posting your full time work?

    August 4, 2012 at 4:35 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Weekend baby, plus I took a weeks holidays. It's all in the name of spreading the word (the word being laissez faire economics, individual liberty and the necessity of atheism in a non forceful way).

      August 4, 2012 at 4:47 am |
    • Obama

      Nobody has a job. I likes it that way.

      August 4, 2012 at 7:19 am |
  18. Editor

    Liberals are complete and absolute hypocrites. Eat more chicken!

    They have lost sight of the foundational principles of Liberalism. Freedoms and equality FOR ALL. Which by the way is inclusive of Christians and those with traditional values. By criticizing a Christian for expressing his views IS DISCRIMINATORY by the very definition of the argument YOU stand behind when you feel you are being discriminated against for being "whatever" – black, white, Hindu, Muslim, gay, straight. It goes both ways so don't be a hypocrit.

    August 4, 2012 at 1:55 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      There's a massive difference between criticizing a person's views and suppressing their views. Nobody is suppressing anybody. we're just saying that Cathy is a des.picable human being for supporting hate groups, who clearly don't have a view of freedom and equality for all.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:10 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Oh yeah, and it isn't just liberals who support gay rights.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:13 am |
    • rick

      "Freedoms and equality FOR ALL."

      Exactly! The 14th amendment calls for equal protection under the law. Including marriage. The Supreme Court held this in Loving vs. Virginia (1967)

      "By criticizing a Christian for expressing his views IS DISCRIMINATORY"
      So, how is that different than criticizing anyone (including the KKK, the Aryan Brotherhood, Bowtie Louie Farrakhan, etc) for their views?

      August 4, 2012 at 7:02 am |
  19. jimbocombo

    Following Christ has nothing to do with hatred. Don't let bad apples ruin what Christ can do for you. How much 'faith' does it take to be an atheist. I've known many Check out C.S. Lewis work. See what transformation is possible.

    August 4, 2012 at 1:03 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      CS Lewis, the guy who thinks little girls should be sent to hell for wearing makeup.

      August 4, 2012 at 4:11 am |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      No faith in being an Atheist! Faith is belief without evidence and since we do not believe without evidence we do not have faith. Christards are the ones accepting a book written 2000 years ago and apparently inspired by their imaginary friend god who they have no evidence for the existence of. I'll be happy to take the easier stance and say I simply don't have all the answers...life is so much more enjoyable...no fear-mongering, no gullibility...just constant learning and being open-minded and accepting to all who do no harm to others. Without a book to guide me to hate, I have no reason to judge people based on who they are. The only time anyone should judge another person is when the person causes undue harm to other people and we have legal systems for that.

      August 4, 2012 at 11:26 am |
  20. cetude

    Christianity is too full of hate for my liking, so I'm happy to be atheist.

    August 3, 2012 at 11:50 pm |
    • Obama

      Give me a second term and I'll tax Christians.

      August 4, 2012 at 7:20 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.