Chick-fil-A

Green Bean Coffee Cart to Move to Cox Hall

The Green Bean, Emory’s fair-trade student-run coffee cart, will relocate to the Cox Hall food court this fall. The cart has operated outside Cannon Chapel since fall 2009.

Students manage the day-to-day operations of the Green Bean, though Emory’s food-service provider Sodexo maintains ownership. It opened in January 2008 and was initially located under the Dobbs University Center.

The Green Bean will replace the Emory Bakery and offer a greater variety of pastries as well as espresso drinks such as lattes and cappuccinos, according to David Furhman, the senior director of Emory’s Food Service Administration. This change is also part of a larger facelift that Cox Hall is undergoing this fall, which includes the removal of Chick-fil-A and Pizza Hut.

Making the decision to move the Green Bean cart was not easy, Furhman said. Green Bean student employees collaborated with Furhman in the spring to come up with a resolution.

“The cart is several years old and in disrepair, and we found ourselves at a juncture of either having to replace it or simply moving the Green Bean operation,” Furhman said.

He added that the Green Bean will “benefit from a comfortable, indoor operating environment, longer operating hours and an expanded menu.”

The ultimate fate of the physical cart, however, is still up for debate, though only Sodexo can make the final decision, according to College junior Sonam Vashi, the Green Bean’s general manager and the Wheel copy chief.

“We feel that moving the cart will offer more opportunities to grow our business,” Vashi said. “We are not just selling coffee but educating consumers about fair trade.”

Emory Hospital Patient Steals DeKalb Ambulance

A patient from Emory University Hospital stole an ambulance with two DeKalb County Fire Department paramedics inside the back unit on June 1.

The suspect, whom the AJC has identified as Frank Ponquinette, 36, was still wearing a gown and rubber gloves when he climbed behind the wheel of the ambulance parked on an emergency ramp at the hospital. The paramedics were completing paperwork in the back of the ambulance when it was stolen, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported on June 1.

Ponquinette zoomed away just before 2 p.m. for several miles, and the ambulance tore down a utility pole and then crashed into the Sandy Chiropractic office on Church Street. No one was inside the building, according to the AJC.

DeKalb Fire Battalion Chief Christopher Morrison Jr. told the AJC that the suspect then escaped on foot. He was taken into custody at a shopping center several hours after wrecking the ambulance.

Ponquinette has been charged with two counts of kidnapping as well as interference with government property, the AJC reported on June 3. The two paramedics — a male and female firefighter — were hurt but in stable condition at Atlanta Medical Center after the incident.

“He knew they were in the unit because he actually looked through the window in the back and he saw them and pretty much told them to just be quiet and hold on,” Morrison told the AJC.

One of the paramedics in the ambulance was able to radio in their location through a tactical channel, so that 911 dispatch received a play-by-play account of the incident.

“[When] you’ve been in this business long enough, nothing surprises you,” Morrison told the AJC. “When you think you’ve seen it all, something else happens.”

Trethewey Appointed to Second Term as Poet Laureate

Natasha Trethewey, Emory’s Robert W. Woodruff Professor of English and Creative Writing, was appointed last week to her second term as the 19th U.S. Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, known as the nation’s official poet.

Trethewey, who also serves as the director of the Creative Writing Program, will begin her next term in September.

The Poet Laureate Consulant in Poetry “serves as the nation’s official lightning rod for the poetic impulse of Americans,” according to the Library of Congress website. The Poet Laureate aims to raise awareness and appreciation of the reading and writing of poetry and receives a $35,000 annual stipend funded by a gift from an Archer M. Huntington endowment.

“The Library and the country are fortunate Natasha Trethewey will continue her work as Poet Laureate,” Librarian of Congress James Billington, who selected Trethewey for the position, said in a June 10 Library of Congress press release. “Natasha’s first term was a resounding success, and we could not be more thrilled with her plans for the coming year.”

In her second term, according to the press release, Trethewey will explore societal issues through a poetic lens in a regular feature on the PBS NewsHour Poetry Series, joining NewsHour Senior Correspondent Jeffrey Brown for on-air reports in different cities across the country.

Among her accomplishments during her first term were her “Office Hours,” a tradition that former Poet Laureates upheld between 1937 and 1986. “Office Hours” allowed Trethewey to interact with the general public in the Library’s Poetry Room.

“All of us on the Emory campus, along with members of the broader Emory community, are proud and enthusiastically supportive of the work [Trethewey] has done to share the creative power of poetry with the entire nation,” College Dean Robin Forman said in a June 10 University press release, adding that Trethewey took the time during this past year to continuing engaging with Emory students and the Creative Writing Program.

Trethewey received the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry and the Lillian Smith Award for her poetry collection “Native Guard.” She released a sequel to that work, titled “Thrall,” last year. Additionally, Trethewey has published the collections “Bellocq’s Ophelia” and “Domestic Work,” as well as a nonfiction book Beyond Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast in 2010.

As Poet Laureate, Trethewey joins the ranks of several others who have filled the position, including Billy Collins, Robert Pinsky and Rita Dove.

This past spring, Trethewey was also named a 2013 member of the American Academy of the Arts, one of the United States’ oldest honorary societies.

She is additionally serving a four-year term as the Poet Laureate of Mississippi and will continue in both positions.

— By Jordan Friedman, Karishma Mehrotra and Dustin Slade

chikfilaweb

Ciao bella, Chick-fil-A! Your final days in Cox Hall are slipping away faster than the chicken sandwiches disappear during lunch hour.

O sweet, juicy-yet-crunchy chicken sandwiches. I prefer thee without pickles, just chicken and bun. Splatter one packet of mayo in between and you have my weekday lunch staple. For balance, toss in an order of waffle fries fresh out the fryer, the ridges still glistening with 100 percent peanut oil, yes, toss in an order of those.

It was the waffle fries that first enraptured me. I was in sixth grade, and those waffle fries were so radically different than the golden brown slend-ies from McDonalds or BK. The skin was still on ‘em, the bite was so rich and full. I recall heading to the drive-thru on a Sunday afternoon only to see it closed. What’s this? Applebee’s would have to do that day. In high school, my adoration switched to the Chick-fil-A operating in the food court of Quaker Bridge Mall, off Route 1 in Jersey. And now, my current betrothed is being taken away. But in all these years, was my Chick-fil-A chowtime immoral?

Some brief context: Chick-fil-A is owned by a Baptist family, the Cathys of Georgia, and last June, Dan T. Cathy, the President, COO and son of the founder, gave his stance on marriage. In an interview with a Christian news organization, he said Chick-fil-A supported “the biblical definition of the family unit.” In other words, the Cathys oppose same-sex marriage. Further, Kim Severson of The New York Times reports a 2011 investigation of Chick-fil-A’s tax records, which show the company’s operators, its WinShape Foundation and the Cathy family had donated millions of dollars to groups involved in defeating same-sex marriage initiatives.

This was a textbook PR disaster. Despite it all, according to Leon Stafford of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the company posted $4.6 billion in sales in 2012, up by 14 percent from $4.1 billion a year earlier. I wasn’t kidding about them waffle fries.

I’ll sidestep the debate and just go straight to the point: Chick-fil-A and its owners are intolerant. Given this, are my lunch hour trips to the Cox Hall Chick-fil-A immoral? I buy my usual, the chicken sandwich with waffles fries and two packets of mayo. But through this action, though it is a commercial transaction for food, is this choice immoral?

I’m buying something that in all likelihood is engineered to taste delicious, and in going through with this transaction, I not only receive my food; I am also, essentially, contributing to Chick-fil-A’s profit margin. This money is spent supporting intolerance, as well as adding value to a company whose hegemony has sided with intolerance. I’m not endorsing their position, obviously, but I am economically aiding their cause. So am I in the wrong? It seems like it. So then, and perhaps this is even more troubling, why do I keep going back?

And do the views of Chick-fil-A constitute sufficient grounds to remove a commercial restaurant from campus? In other words, is Chick-fil-A’s removal from Cox perhaps unfair? Well, the decision to remove Chick-fil-A was not related to politics or student calls for its removal, according to the senior director of Emory’s Food Service Administration in a March 22 Wheel article. PolitiFact Georgia, a Tampa Bay Times organization, published a piece on April 19 which investigated this claim (the article is titled “Emory says Chick-fil-A decision not political” and is written by fellow Wheel editor Karishma Mehrotra. No, I’m not plugging a colleague; it’s a diligent piece of reporting which gives you a real taste of Emory).

While there was an objective process to review all food vendors, according to the report, incomplete documentation provided by Emory did not confirm the claim that Chick-fil-A was not removed for political reasons. A student co-chair of the Food Advisory committee said the restaurant’s values were a contributing, but not a deciding factor, in the committee’s decision.

However, the same student later clarified values refers to “human development values” such as physical well-being. Yet proposed plans call for pizza and pasta to replace Chick-fil-A, so this claim seems questionable as well.

Honestly, who knows with the Emory administration these days. According to the same PolitiFact piece, Emory instructed the students on the Food Advisory committee to no longer comment on the issue, and the Food Service director who made the initial claim referred all inquires to Campus Communications.

Of course, that is the office where all inquires go to die.

I guess in a year of bungled PR, Campus Communications might be trying out a new, more conservative strategy: saying nothing at all.

Regardless of the ultimate reasons for the restaurant’s removal, why not let the students vote with their wallet? Are not the daily decisions of the individual consumers who frequent Cox the freest way of determining whether Chick-fil-A, and its views, belong on campus or not?

If Chick-fil-A is bigoted and does not reflect our values, then business will suffer and eventually be driven out. Some committee and some surveys and some focus groups should not determine Chick-fil-A’s removal. The real surveys at the cashier’s line should. Unless our actual values are not reflected when we purchase a chicken sandwich? But in that case what’s wrong with giving customers what they want? Hah.

I do know, however, that I’ll be sorely missing Chick-fil-A next year.

Associate Editor Vincent Xu is a College junior from Princeton, N.J. 

Cartoon by Jessica Goldblum

The University will remove Chick-fil-A from the Cox Hall Food Court this summer.

Food Advisory Committee Emory (FACE) presented three proposed floor plans for Cox Hall at a student feedback meeting on March 7, none of which contained the Chick-fil-A currently present in the building.

Chick-fil-A will be eliminated as a food option in Cox Hall as part of a facelift the food court will undergo during the summer, according to David Furhman, the senior director of Emory’s Food Service Administration.

Controversy regarding the national restaurant chain arose last summer when Chick-fil-A COO and President Dan Cathy publicly stated his opposition to gay marriage.

Since then, members of Emory’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community formed a committee calling for Chick-fil-A’s removal from Cox Hall, and the Student Government Association (SGA) passed a resolution against Chick-fil-A’s presence on campus in December. Students also held a protest last semester.

Furhman said that the ultimate decision to remove Chick-fil-A from all three of the proposed designs for floor plans was based solely on student feedback that his office has received through a series of surveys and focus groups.

The removal of Chick-fil-A was not a politically-motivated move, nor was it spurred by the outcries against it that have taken place on campus, Furhman said.

“What we learned was that there was no great affinity or love for Chick-fil-A,” Furhman said. “It was more of an affinity or love of the convenience, and what students also told us was that they didn’t really love Chick-fil-A.”

However, some members of the LGBT community have claimed that the conditions leading to the fast-food chain’s removal from campus actually differ from what has been publicly stated.

“I think there is a lot more working behind Furhman making that statement,” said College junior Dohyun Ahn, the co-president of Emory Pride.

He said that publicly stating Chick-fil-A was removed due to outcry from the Emory community would have been more reflective of what has actually occurred.

“It wasn’t that students just wanted pizza instead of chicken,” Ahn said. “That wasn’t the real motivation behind [the decision].”

Despite these claims, Furhman wrote in an email to the Wheel: “The decision to examine and retool Cox Hall dining was part of a planned, larger process that began about a year ago — with the objective of providing new menu options and choices — well before any controversy began.”

Furhman said the thoughts, opinions and voices of all members of the Emory Community are considered to help to guide FACE in making such decisions.

Although some students are upset over the public explanation behind the removal, many said they are satisfied with the overall outcome.

“The removal of Chick-fil-A is a defeat for bigotry and a victory for the Emory community,” Andy Ratto, a fourth-year student in the Laney Graduate School and a member of the LGBT committee, wrote in an email to the Wheel. “I hope this inspires students on other campuses who have a problem with Chick-fil-A to push for its removal from their campuses.”

Furhman said Chick-fil-A has existed on Emory’s campus for 29 years.

Given FACE’s commitment to variety, he said, it was time to “shake things up a bit.”

Student feedback was one of six criteria FACE used in determining whether current restaurants in Cox Hall would remain in their respective locations or be removed, according to College sophomore Michael Sacks, a FACE co-chair.

Only those students who attended FACE’s open meetings this semesters were able to complete surveys, said College sophomore Karoline Porcello, a FACE co-chair.

The six criteria included menu variety and flavor profiles, menu quality (for example, “minimally processed and fresh”), brand commitment to sustainability, brand ethos and consistency with Campus Life core values, preferential survey data and business, operational and financial considerations.

Porcello explained that Chick-fil-A did not meet Campus Life and student values.

She also specified that Chick-fil-A’s values were not the deciding factor in the removal of Chick-fil-A from campus, though she said those values were a contributing factor.

“One of our criteria for evaluating dining brands, presented for feedback at the February FACE Meeting, on campus includes ‘Brand Ethos: Consistency with Campus Life Core Values,’” Furhman wrote. “This criterion, more than any others, is quite subjective. It’s for just this reason that we solicit feedback from the community so they may provide their own opinions and thoughts.”

The adopted floor plan will place a pizza and pasta venue where Chick-fil-A currently resides. Other changes will include the expansion of both the Mexican food and salad areas, as well as the construction of both a grab-and-go station and a coffee and bakery area.

—By Dustin Slade 

Chick-fil-A is being replaced in Cox Hall, Emory officials say, due to the chicken sandwich’s lack of popularity on  campus. At the end of last semester, the University gave Food Advisory Committee Emory (FACE) the ability to replace anything in Cox Hall during the spring through a process involving student feedback. FACE used surveys to help them pinpoint what, exactly, students would like to see in the Cox Hall food court. Ultimately, FACE, Food Service Administration (FSA) and Campus Life officials stressed that the elimination of Chick-fil-A was not politically motivated but was simply the result of student feedback, which indicated that students do not enjoy the food Chick-fil-A serves.

Last semester, there was extreme controversy that erupted on campus after Chick-fil-A President and COO Dan Cathy publicly stated his opposition to gay marriage during the summer and acknowledged that Chick-fil-A has donated money to anti-gay organizations. Members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community formed a committee last fall with the aim of removing Chick-fil-A, which was followed by a protest on Asbury Circle and a Student Government Association (SGA) resolution calling for the restaurant chain’s removal from Cox.

While the University has said Chick-fil-A’s removal was not the direct result of the LGBT opposition, we at the Wheel applaud FACE for its ability to reevaluate Cox Hall through student input and cater to the “tastes” of students. Regardless of the University’s reasoning, we also find it important to acknowledge the LGBT community’s efforts throughout the past year, as we detailed in a staff editorial and news story last semester.

Some individuals on campus are saying they believe the decision was probably politically motivated — an idea that the University has repeatedly denied. Regardless of whether or not this was a politically charged decision, we are glad that Chick-fil-A will no longer exist on campus given its history.

Several students have been arguing that FACE was used as a vessel to get rid of Chick-fil-A. While we don’t know if this was indeed the case, we are glad that FACE was an instrument used to reevaluate certain food choices in Cox in general. We are, nonetheless, disappointed that the University did not wish to eliminate Chick-fil-A for its anti-gay sentiments, especially given the fact that many members of the LGBT community felt uncomfortable and offended by its presence.

We understand the process undertaken was complex. However, it is difficult to determine how influential the survey actually was in making the final decision, given that David Furhman, the senior director of Emory’s Food Service Administration, did not respond to a request to provide the Wheel with the survey data. In general, as members of the Emory community, we wish the parties involved had been more transparent in the process. For example, only students who attended the FACE meetings had an opportunity to complete the survey, but we feel the survey should have been distributed in a student-wide email, for example.

Regardless, the end goal of all groups who wanted Chick-Fil-A kicked off campus was met. Whether students were purchasing food from Chick-Fil-A less frequently because they really truly did not enjoy the food or because of the political controversy surrounding it is, at the end of the day, not as important as Chick-fil-A’s removal itself. The distinction is irrelevant given the fact that Chick-fil-A will be gone appeases both of these groups of people. Low interest is low interest.

The above staff editorial represents the majority opinion of the Wheel’s editorial board.

Dear A.J.,

Is Chick-fil-A being removed from campus for political reasons? If so, what about Pizza Hut? What has Pizza Hut done to deserve the wrath of the LGBT community?

Sincerely,
Engayged Student

Dear Engayged,
I’m glad you asked this very important question. To answer most of it, my gay friend, Bill will take over. Bill, being gay, is allowed to comment on these proceedings. Even though I have an opinion, I am not allowed to share it because of certain privileges. For the record, Bill wrote this while drinking straight out of a gallon of Chick-fil-A Sweet Tea.
***
Hello, I’m Bill. I’ve been gay since I was 15 years old, so I am capable of answering all your gay questions. First of all, Chick-fil-A was indeed removed because of the homosexual agenda. It was not removed because of its “values” regarding marriage equality. No, it was removed because its trans-fat content, its lack of vitamin D (the gayest vitamin) and its abundant complex carbohydrates affront gay values of physical fitness. While we believe in the right to marry each other, we also believe in the right not to see muffin tops. Wardrobe is between one man and one properly fitting T-shirt. Just as the Christian right is offended to see me kissing my boyfriend, so am I offended to see the Christian right eating fried butter on a stick in sweatpants. Replacing unhealthy fast food with healthy food is practically the prime directive of the gay agenda. Notice, ice cream has been replaced with non-fat frozen yogurt. You can thank GLAAD for that.

As for Pizza Hut’s removal, it is also a question of values. Emory makes all its dining decisions based on the values of the establishments. For instance, Jazzman’s Cafe was originally affiliated with Louis Farrakhan but renounced that association in order to stay on campus. That’s why the only jazz played is a rendition of Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On.” Similarly, Pizza Hut’s professed values are at the heart of its removal. You see, Pizza Hut recently hired Joe Kim of Valero energy as its new COO. While at Valero, he oversaw the creation of U.S. defense contracts that provided fuel for Israel. Also, in 2010, Valero provided millions of dollars of funding to back California Proposition 23, which would have delayed the implementation of the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. Both Palestinian Rights and environmentalist groups are outraged at this new hire. Their pressure on the University has been firm and led to Pizza Hut’s ouster despite the fact that these organizations do not exist. According to Food Advisory Committee (FACE) Co-Chair College sophomore Michael Sacks, “Who’s Joe Kim? Palestine? What does any of that have to do with pizza? There’s been no pressure at all about any of this stuff.”

But Emory often yields to nonexistent pressure, more so than real pressure. For instance, the vocal #EmoryCuts group dedicated to reversing the recent department cuts has been ignored; meanwhile, Emory has bowed to nonexistent pressure and removed Chick-fil-A because, according to the Wheel, “More than 600 invitations were sent to Emory students inviting them … to discuss a campaign for ousting Chick-fil-A from Cox Hall, but the event only attracted five attendees, including only four students as well as the Director of the Office of LGBT Life Michael Shutt.” Emory proves that the less pressure you put on the school, the more it is willing to accept your demands.

It’s values, not money, that are important to Emory, you see. Remember how Emory replaced one of the Einstein’s Bros. Bagels on campus? It’s not because it wasn’t making as much money as Dunkin’ Donuts was projected to make; Emory replaced it because the owner’s values were pro-Zion. Furthermore, our dental school alumni spoke out about the need for “Christian bagels,” and thus, we replaced Einstein’s with Dunkin’ Donuts. Notice again, the Christian Right’s preference for sugary, greasy food.

So, young, Engayged Student, the reason why Emory removed Chick-fil-A and Pizza Hut has absolutely everything to do with the companies’ values and firm pressure from the student body and has absolutely nothing to do with commitments to menu variety, menu quality, preferential survey data and financial considerations. No, profitability, quality of food and student preference are not a part of the decision to change food court options, only values.

Remember students, Sodexo giveth, Sodexo taketh away.

A.J.’s note: Einstein’s Bagels isn’t pro-Zion, dental school alumni did not push for “Christian Bagels,” Louis Farrakhan did not associate with Jazzman’s Café and GLAAD has nothing to do with Pinkberry. Everything else is true.

— By A.J. Artis 

The University will officially remove Chick-fil-A from the Cox Hall Food Court this summer.

Food Advisory Committee Emory (FACE) presented three proposed floor plans for Cox Hall at a student feedback meeting on March 7, none of which contained the Chick-fil-A currently present in the building. Chick-fil-A will be eliminated as a food option in Cox Hall as part of a facelift the food court will undergo during the summer, according to David Furhman, the senior director of Emory’s Food Service Administration.

The adopted floor plan will place a pizza and pasta venue where Chick-fil-A currently resides. Other changes will include the expansion of both the Mexican food and salad areas, as well as the construction of both a grab-and-go station and a coffee and bakery area.

Furhman said the decision to remove Chick-fil-A from all three of the proposed floor plans was based solely on student feedback that his office has received through a series of surveys and focus groups. The removal of Chick-fil-A was not a politically motivated move, nor was it spurred by the outcries against it that have taken place on campus, Furhman said.

“What we learned was that there was no great affinity or love for Chick-fil-A,” Furhman said. “It was more of an affinity or love of the convenience, and what students also told us was that they didn’t really love Chick-fil-A.”

Controversy regarding the national restaurant chain arose last summer when Chick-fil-A COO and President Dan Cathy publicly stated his opposition to gay marriage. Since then, members of Emory’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community formed a committee calling for Chick-fil-A’s removal from Cox Hall, and the Student Government Association (SGA) passed a resolution against Chick-fil-A’s presence on campus in December. Students also held a protest last semester.

Furhman said Chick-fil-A has existed on Emory’s campus for 29 years. Given FACE’s commitment to variety, he said, it was time to “shake things up a bit.”

Chick-fil-A did not meet Campus Life and student values, according to College sophomore Karoline Porcello, a FACE co-chair. She also specified that Chick-fil-A’s values were not the deciding factor in the removal of Chick-fil-A, though she said they were a contributing factor.

Student feedback was one of six criteria FACE used in determining whether current restaurants in Cox Hall would remain in their respective locations or be removed, according to College sophomore Michael Sacks, a FACE co-chair.

The six criteria included menu variety and flavor profiles, menu quality — for example, minimally processed and fresh —, brand commitment to sustainability, brand ethos and consistency with Campus Life core values, preferential survey data, and business, operational and financial considerations.

— By Asst. News Editor Dustin Slade

Photo by Photography Editor Emily Lin

A full version of this story will be published in next Friday’s issue.

Nobody in America would disagree that everyone has a right to free speech. Although, as demonstrated by conservatives who were gleeful by the Citizens United ruling, money is as much speech as speech is.

Therefore, I was disappointed to read the two articles in Tuesday’s edition of the Wheel essentially calling people that advocate against Dan Cathy’s anti-gay marriage comments as “intolerant,” or calling the proposed removal of Chick-fil-A from campus “censorship.” They are not and it is not.

For starters, what is really at stake when we talk about gay marriage? It’s not just not allowing two individuals who love each other to engage in a covenant of marriage already granted to a subgroup of a population (which is discriminatory enough, mind you). It is the loss of all the legal benefits of marriage, such as tax breaks, next-of-kin rights, adoption rights and even estate rights, amongst so many more.

Can you really tell a gay veteran that their partner is not entitled to their military benefits as they would have if the partner was a heterosexual spouse, only because they themselves are not heterosexual and did not marry in a way that the government sanctioned? Is that just?

Of course, Dan Cathy is entitled to his opinion. Likewise, I, like the entire Emory community, am entitled to rebuke his opinion. Much like money in elections is considered speech, money we spend on goods is speech of sorts.

This idea is actually the cornerstone of capitalism: we vote with our money, and the companies that get the most money thrive and succeed. If we disagree with a company, we can issue a boycott. This is how things work.

But Chick-fil-A shouldn’t be punished because of Dan Cathy’s opinion, right? I mean, it’s not partaking in the discrimination, and is not benefitting it.

You’d be wrong there. Chick-fil-A, through charitable organizations in its corporate structure, has donated millions to organizations against gay marriage such as the Family Research Council and the Marriage and Family Foundation, who then lobby Congress to pass anti-gay marriage laws. For context, the Family Research Council is actually considered a “hate group” by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Dan Cathy, and anyone against gay marriage, is entitled to their opinion. But when I purchase food at Chick-fil-A, my money (and our dining money as Emory students and consumers who eat there) goes toward Chick-fil-A’s profits.

If this money is then given to such groups, then yes, it is my problem. I am perpetuating it if I am eating at Chick-fil-A.

So again, I fully support Dan Cathy’s right to his opinion, and to his first amendment right to free speech. However, I have the right to disagree with it, and more importantly, the right to vote against it with my own purchase choices.

More importantly, I have the right to prevent my money from going to groups that actively oppose gay marriage and lobby politicians to prevent it from being law, also by not eating at Chick-fil-A.

The Emory community will make its decision in the end. Whatever it is, I will respect it and still make my own choices as an informed consumer. But please, don’t pretend that if Emory does choose to kick Chick-fil-A out, that that would be a travesty, or “censorship” or “intolerance.”

All it is is the Emory community expressing its voice, and making its voice heard. This is something conservatives, frankly, should love, given their near-universal adoption of the Citizens United ruling, which codifies this

There is a time and place for listening and for thoughtful consideration. But there is also a point at which one is obligated to assert, to stand up, and to deny what they, after careful examination, perceive as wrong.

It has been suggested by some that calls for the removal Emory’s Chick-Fil-A from campus are tantamount to censorship or intolerance. And those are certainly ways one could look at the matter.

But allow me to offer my perspective on this matter. Through the WinShape Foundation, Mr. Cathy of Chick-Fil-A has donated millions of dollars to organizations that have been called “anti-gay.” It’s a baffling accusation. After all, how could the organizations WinShape donates to, like the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (“The Bible is clear in teaching on sexual sin including sex outside of marriage and homosexual acts,” FCA Application), or the Marriage & Family Foundation (who list among their legislative victories an amendment in Virginia which defined marriage as between one man and one woman) be considered homophobic?

Enough with the snark, though. The arc of social justice movements is towards greater freedom for those who have been hurt by existing power structures.

There are people in this country, people who love each other and care for one another, who cannot enjoy the same benefits as others because they have the audacity to want to marry someone of the same sex. Dan Cathy, in donating money towards these explicitly homophobic organizations, is supporting organizations that harm homosexuals and bisexuals. Dan Cathy is harming people.

The call to see the Chick-Fil-A removed is not an act of intolerance or censorship. Mr. Cathy has already communicated, quite clearly, in fact, his position on gay marriage. What is there to be censored?

Similarly, it is not an act of intolerance, or at least not in the way that the word is commonly understood. Is a desire to see Chick-Fil-A removed from campus intolerant of Mr. Cathy’s views?

Yes, sure, fine. But it is a righteous intolerance. It is an intolerance of a man and of an organization that uses its profits to undo the work of the LGBTQ Movement. It is an intolerance that modern human decency demands.

So when people boycott an organization, it is to send a message. In the words of too many people to name: hit them where it hurts — the wallet.

Mr. Cathy wants to accomplish something that harms millions of people and is found ethically offensive to millions more? Then they will do all that they can to keep him from accomplishing this terrible thing.

You have a decision. You may defend the awful things said and done that hurt the oppressed. Or, you may help fight against the Oppressor. This is not a intellectual plaything for you to mull over on your walk to classes.

This is a matter of true liberty.

Rhett Henry is a College Junior from Lawrenceville, Georgia.

“We will not tolerate intolerance!”

This is essentially the cry of the many lobbying for the removal of Chick-Fil-As across the country or the arrest of its expansion as a whole. The result of our widespread and growing tolerance is this ironic recurrence of intolerance. This issue has recently come to a very obvious head in the controversy surrounding Chick-Fil-A and its founding biblical principles. Dan Cathy has been accused of many things, among them anti-gay sentiments and policies. The truth, one will find, has been greatly misrepresented and distorted to unnecessary and rather shameful proportions.

It should be noted, first and foremost, that Cathy never even mentioned gays in his interview. Instead, he only expressed his views on same-sex marriage. He is merely of the opinion (based, it is true, on his interpretation of the bible) that same-sex marriage goes against the traditional views of marriage and does not foster the proper emotional nourishment essential for the well-being of a child.

People are entitled to their opinions, whether or not we agree with them. The essence of America is the fire with which we preserve the rights and beliefs of individuals, with the full knowledge that we may disagree sometimes.

We expect to be respected, hence we must respect. I don’t see protesters at every halal butcher shop protesting against the way Muslims want their meat. Just because Muslims believe pork to be unclean doesn’t entitle me to publically malign their belief. Although I don’t share their beliefs, we coexist in a state of mutual tolerance. I support their right to free speech and ideology just as they support mine, and the moment that ends is the moment America ceases to be.

It is perfectly reasonable, perhaps the moral responsibility of a conscious citizen, to decry a figure or organization for hate or prejudice. What you may be surprised to hear is that Chick-Fil-A is guilty of neither. The supposed “anti-gay” and “LGBT hate groups” that received donations from Chick-Fil-A are actually Christian organizations that provide spiritual ministry to those who wish to find an escape from homosexuality, because, believe it or not, some LGBT people want to be heterosexual.

Would you criticize an organization that tried to help heterosexuals sort out their desire to be homosexual? They don’t force their beliefs on everyone, and although this person in this or that organization may have made some polemic political statements, those views are in no way a reflection of Chick-Fil-A itself. Let us also not forget, as we have been quick to do, the $37 million in scholarships given out to college students or the various millions that fund marital counseling services and team-building.

What many have also overlooked is the actual involvement and participation of Chick-Fil-A employees and managers on a site to site basis. Brace yourselves: Chick-Fil-A both hires and serves LGBT people. Does that sound like gay hatred or prejudice? Anthony Piccola, Chick-Fil-A’s franchise operator, declares has declared Chick-fil-A’s mission to  “treat every person with honor, dignity and respect — regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender.” Cathy himself says, “while my family and I believe in the Biblical definition of marriage, we love and respect anyone who disagrees.”

In this time of economic hardship, when jobs shouldn’t be taken for granted, it just doesn’t make sense to condemn and boycott a business and so hurt the economy and the very LGBT employees you are trying to defend, not to mention the various charities and scholarships supported by Chick-Fil-A enterprises. It also is not fair to the Chick-Fil-A employees who receive the hatred and very strong views of both sides of the issue. Need I even mention the delicious worth of waffle fries, spicy chicken sandwiches, and milkshakes?

Dan Cathy tolerates others’ advocacy for homosexuality but expects tolerance and respect for his own beliefs in return. It’s perfectly within your right to boycott Chick-Fil-A, but when it comes to tolerance, practice what you preach.

Jonathan Warkentine is a College Freshman from Almaty, Kazakhstan.

To the Editor:

I am not one to stand up for an organization like Chick-Fil-A. The statements of their CEO and the contributions of their company to homophobic groups are outrageous. But that cannot be the basis for a decision to remove their small franchise from Emory’s campus.

We are better than that.

Emory Dean of Campus Life Ajay Nair said it best: “freedom of expression and an open exchange of ideas are central tenets of the Emory community”. Do many Emory students agree with me that the Chick-fil-a CEO is wrong? Yes. Do some feel outraged enough to not feel comfortable eating there? Certainly. But Emory College should not be the place where we make judgment calls about the opinions of others. Creating a ‘heckler’s veto’ of any company we decide is against our own personal, social and political beliefs would make Emory into place where only one view is the ‘right’ view. Such a move would be a step in the wrong direction, a step into the same kind of censorship that we see in Missouri and Tennessee where lawmakers want to ban teachers from saying “gay” in classrooms.

For those who are angry, upset, and simply don’t want Chick-Fil-a to remain, I urge you to heed the words of Justice Brennan in the controversial flag-burning case Texas v. Johnson (1989): “The way to preserve the flag’s special role is not to punish those who feel differently about these matters. It is to persuade them that they are wrong.” I’d go just one step further. Not only should we persuade and discuss, we must also listen.

Reuben Lack

Emory College

Class of 2016

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