What A Wonderful Gesture

The following is a press release put out by Chick-Fil-A on December 4th:

Chick-fil-A is now an official associate partner of the 119th Army- Navy Game presented by USAA. One of the most storied and iconic rivalries in all of sports will take place on Saturday, December 8 at 3:00 p.m. ET at Lincoln Financial Field with the broadcast on CBS. The Chick-fil-A partnership includes a pop-up restaurant in Philadelphia that will be part of an experiential watch party for military service men and women. Chick-fil-A will host active duty military, veterans and their families at the private event.

The partnership and event are an extension of Chick-fil-A’s active involvement in college football which includes the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game, the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame and the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, which is part of the College Football Playoff,” said Keith Hester, Sports & Entertainment Partnerships at Chick-fil-A. “Chick-fil-A is proud to support and honor the men and women in the military and their families who have served, are serving, and will serve our country.”

The Chick-fil-A pop-up restaurant is designed to bring fans of rival football teams together by creating a shared table. Members of the military will attend the event to participate in spirited competition, a shared meal and a watch party. Army and Navy active military and veterans can register to attend the event by RSVP via this link:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/chick-fil-a-army-navy-watch-party-tickets-52313236298

Other activities include a card writing station to show military appreciation, giveaways, food and much more. Chick-fil-A will also be flying in Army and Navy veterans nominated by local franchise Operators located across the country to attend the pre-game ceremonies and the game.  

Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy was a World War II veteran himself, and the company is proud to count many veterans among the more than 120,000 Operators, Team Members, and staff who represent the brand nationwide. The company plans to continue its commitment to hiring and honoring veterans, recognizing the value in their unique skills and easing the transition to civilian life after service. Recently, Chick-fil-A was named No. 2 on Indeed’s list of Top-Rated Workplaces as ranked by military veterans.

There are many reasons I love Chick-Fil-A.

Politicizing Food–This Is Ridiculous

The New Yorker has posted an article about the arrival of Chick-fil-A in New York City. The article is titled, “Chick-fil-A’s Creepy Infiltration of New York City.” Wow. I never knew fried chicken was capable of infiltration.

The article reports:

New York has taken to Chick-fil-A. One of the Manhattan locations estimates that it sells a sandwich every six seconds, and the company has announced plans to open as many as a dozen more storefronts in the city. And yet the brand’s arrival here feels like an infiltration, in no small part because of its pervasive Christian traditionalism. Its headquarters, in Atlanta, is adorned with Bible verses and a statue of Jesus washing a disciple’s feet. Its stores close on Sundays. Its C.E.O., Dan Cathy, has been accused of bigotry for using the company’s charitable wing to fund anti-gay causes, including groups that oppose same-sex marriage. “We’re inviting God’s judgment on our nation,” he once said, “when we shake our fist at him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’ ” The company has since reaffirmed its intention to “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect,” but it has quietly continued to donate to anti-L.G.B.T. groups. When the first stand-alone New York location opened, in 2015, a throng of protesters appeared. When a location opened in a Queens mall, in 2016, Mayor Bill de Blasio proposed a boycott. No such controversy greeted the opening of this newest outpost. Chick-fil-A’s success here is a marketing coup. Its expansion raises questions about what we expect from our fast food, and to what extent a corporation can join a community.

I noticed that word—community—scattered everywhere in the Fulton Street restaurant. A shelf of children’s books bears a plaque testifying to “our love for this local community.” The tables are made of reclaimed wood, which creates, according to a Chick-fil-A press release, “an inviting space to build community.” A blackboard with the header “Our Community” displays a chalk drawing of the city skyline. Outside, you can glimpse an earlier iteration of that skyline on the building’s façade, which, with two tall, imperious rectangles jutting out, “gives a subtle impression of the Twin Towers.”

This emphasis on community, especially in the misguided nod to 9/11, suggests an ulterior motive. The restaurant’s corporate purpose still begins with the words “to glorify God,” and that proselytism thrums below the surface of the Fulton Street restaurant, which has the ersatz homespun ambiance of a megachurch. David Farmer, Chick-fil-A’s vice-president of restaurant experience, told BuzzFeed that he strives for a “pit crew efficiency, but where you feel like you just got hugged in the process.” That contradiction, industrial but claustral, is at the heart of the new restaurant—and of Chick-fil-A’s entire brand. Nowhere is this clearer than in the Cows.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. Needless to say, I feel that the writer is totally overreacting (but I may be prejudiced–I love Chick-fil-A). Was the writer this upset when Hooters or the Playboy Club came to New York?