Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day Post-Mortem
Editors’ Note: Guest blogger Sean Cotter is a writer and activist from Manhattan, New York. His writing has appeared in the Washington Blade. Sean blogs at SeanRobertCotter.com.
Anecdotal reports from the press and from sources on Twitter writing about yesterday’s Chick-fil-A appreciation day indicate that there was indeed massive turnout nationally, with huge lines and police directing traffic, meaning that people who have been pressing this Chick-fil-A story hard should be wary about what they may have unleashed. I wrote about the dangers of putting too much energy into this movement earlier in the week, and I think my points still stand.
The arc of history may bend toward justice, but that doesn’t mean you don’t risk setbacks in the short run by inflaming your opposition and losing public sympathy. If you want your fight to take place completely in the pop cultural and consumer sphere, then you better make sure that you make people like you and that they believe what you’re doing is important.
It’s not just straight people turned off by this whole fiasco. There is also a contingent of gay people out there who are mad as hell about their interests being represented in the media right now by people who look petty and short-sighted, because they are obsessed with a fast food chain. Activists need to be worried about the narrative that is emerging – that in the aftermath of a victory against DADT and the seeming inevitability of gay marriage in the United States, the remaining liberal LGBT movement went insane and cannibalized itself over a chicken sandwich.
Any people who put so much of their energy into fighting this battle, and supporting politicians who are advocating unconstitutional maneuvers to pander to them, are risking irrelevance or worse, especially now that it is beginning to look like the backlash is a real thing.