Chick-Fil-A has apparently struck a nerve. Or, perhaps more accurately, its chief executive officer Dan Cathy has done so.
The Atlanta-based fast-food firm, probably best-known for keeping its stores closed on Sundays in line with Cathy's Christian commitment, has recently drawn the ire of the mayor of Boston, Mass., for being anti-gay-rights. Specifically, Cathy supports organizations that oppose "gay marriage" and, if my facts are correct, at least one that supports controversial "reparative therapy" for gays to change their orientation; as a result, the mayor is trying to keep Chick-Fil-A stores from opening in that city.
I don't pretend to know his motives -- whether those are his true convictions or thinks he will win gay votes in the process -- but he's wasting his time and energy.
The reason is simple: Probably most of the folks who oppose same-gender matrimony consider that conviction bedrock and, on this issue, won't bend to the whims of popular culture. And I mean absolutely never. From a conservative Christian perspective, it's an issue of improper behavior, not one of "orientation."
Some on the political left have tried to frame same-gender matrimony as a civil-rights issue and especially comparing it with the oppression of African-Americans in the South. But the analogy fails because sex, sexual expression and marriage simply aren't Constitutional rights. Besides, one's race is often obvious, while sexual orientation doesn't have to be.
One contributor and a number of posters to Sojourners' left-leaning "God's Politics" blog have said that they would no longer patronize Chick-Fil-A. They have that right. They ought to understand, however, that not only will a boycott be ineffective but that it has already sparked a backlash, with supporters targeting Aug. 1 as a day they will specifically patronize the store.
In addition, as I mentioned, Cathy will not change his stance; remember that he keeps his stores closed on Sundays even though he could probably make way more money with an "after-church" rush. So I don't know what the mayor of Boston is trying to prove.