Action Alert!

After Chick-fil-A day, don't be out to lunch

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Aug 02, 2012

August 1 was the first day of implementation of the HHS contraceptive mandate. What did Christian Americans do to protest this grossly unjust policy?

Thousands of them… went to lunch. At Chick-fil-A.

Don’t get me wrong. I have no complaint with Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day (except perhaps for the timing). If there were a franchise anywhere near my home, I would have had lunch there, too.

The long lines at all those restaurants were politically significant. They showed that many thousands of Americans will support a corporation that has taken a clear stand for marriage, and that many thousands of Americans won’t bend to the mounting pressure of political correctness. Good.

But those Appreciation Day sandwiches did not change the laws regarding marriage, or stop the momentum of the drive to legalize same-sex unions. The demonstration of support for Chick-fil-A did not help small-business owners who are being required to hire flagrantly gay workers, or the mom-and-pop landlords who are being forced to accept homosexual couples as tenants in apartments upstairs from their own family’s home. The August 1 lunches did nothing to block implementation of that heinous contraceptive mandate. If we had as many people actively campaigning--signing petitions and donating to candidates and working phone banks and licking envelopes and signing "Dear Neighbor" cards and knocking on doors and passing out flyers--as we had eating lunch at Chick-fil-A yesterday, we would have the beginnings of a really powerful political movement. Unfortunately, many of the people who came out for lunch went home in the afternoon, and won't make their presence felt for the pro-family cause again. 

You can’t do everything at once. If you plan to support pro-family candidates, to donate to pro-family causes, to vote for pro-family politicians—in short if you’re really active in the pro-family movement—then the Chick-fil-A lunch was a good idea. But at the end of 2012, if you look back over your year, and realize that the peak of your political involvement was eating a chicken sandwich, you’re really out to lunch.

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: John J Plick - Aug. 04, 2012 3:37 PM ET USA

    "Without a vision the people perish..." True indeed, but if all a person can do is to eat a chicken sandwich, that is enough for today. One must have patience.

  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Aug. 03, 2012 1:08 PM ET USA

    I feel strongly that the lunch crowd will also make their will known at the ballot box. But where do we go from here? Any ideas? People are hungry [pun intended] for a plan of action.