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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 CatholicCulture.org. See full bio.

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  • Posted by: feedback - Oct. 08, 2018 3:31 AM ET USA

    Ouellet just responded. His stated intent was to vindicate Pope Francis and undermine Abp. Vigano. But it came out to be the other way around, as he admits to "rumors" about McCarrick's homosexual activity.

  • Posted by: Frodo1945 - Sep. 29, 2018 9:29 AM ET USA

    Wait a minute! Wait a minute! "Pope Francis accepted his resignation from the cardinalate and has ordered his suspension from the exercise of any public ministry, together with the obligation to remain in a house yet to be indicated to him, for a life of prayer and penance until the accusations made against him are examined in a regular canonical trial," the Vatican statement said. So, who is investigating and preparing the case for the canonical trial????

  • Posted by: [email protected] - Sep. 28, 2018 11:47 PM ET USA

    I pray these Cardinals will choose truth. It is long past due to clean out the lavender mafia in the Church at all levels. Beware of attacks from likes of Cupich and Tobin. They will bare their teeth soon. St Michael protect us. Mary pray for us. Jesus save us from the crimes that shout to heaven for justice.

  • Posted by: james-w-anderson8230 - Sep. 28, 2018 10:58 PM ET USA

    For the sake of the Pope's soul, the Church needs to continue to pressure him to come out and do the right thing. End the confusion! End the sabotaging of the Church! Clean up the corruption in the Curia!

  • Posted by: Acolyte - Sep. 28, 2018 10:57 PM ET USA

    Archbishop Viganò clearly dislikes Pope Francis and wants him to resign. Pope Francis is a man elected by the College of Cardinals to the Chair of St. Peter. The man can makes mistakes and no doubt he has, and he has repeatedly apologizes about the sexual abuse scandals that rock the Church. He is trying to make amends for the actions he mistakenly took early in his pontificate and should be forgiven for his weaknesses. Tu est Petrus! You are Peter, Francis! I trust you to shepherd the Church.

  • Posted by: filioque - Sep. 28, 2018 6:53 PM ET USA

    God bless Archbishop Viganò! Every prelate from the Pope on down should be met at every public appearance by laity chanting "Viganò! Viganò! Viganò! Tell us the truth!" Mail your bishop a letter with one word: Viganò!

  • Posted by: Retired01 - Sep. 28, 2018 4:43 PM ET USA

    The only ways we are going to find the truth are if Archbishop Vigano continues to turn up the heat, and if other members of the hierarchy with relevant information join him in turning up the heat.

  • Posted by: MWCooney - Sep. 28, 2018 4:25 PM ET USA

    It is truly time--long past time--to choose sides. The choice (and choosing to not choose is a choice) will resound not only here in this vale of tears, but also before the Judgment Seat which we all must face one day.

  • 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.