Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is blocking Chick-fil-A from building a restaurant in the city, saying the fast-food chain does not share "Chicago's values." Emanuel's opposition comes in response to Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy's recent declaration that he does not support gay marriage. Emanuel, President Obama's former chief of staff, is not alone in combating the company, with Boston Mayor Thomas Menino taking a similar stand. However, the strong-arm tactics are ticking off conservatives, who say Cathy is merely expressing his religious views. Is Emanuel taking his objections too far?
Yes. Cathy is entitled to his opinion: Emanuel's "sanctimonious dissing of Chick-fil-A" is problematic because "there is no proof the business has discriminated against gay couples, let alone any of its customers or employees," says Mary Mitchell at The Chicago Sun-Times. Emanuel and his allies are denying Chick-fil-A the "right to do business" in Chicago because they don't "like Cathy's religious beliefs, and that's just wrong." Is Emanuel going to apply the same pressure to Muslim, Jewish, and Christian business owners who feel the same as Cathy?
"Alderman going overboard on Chick-fil-A bullying"
This is the wrong way to support same-sex marriage: The way to eradicate bigotry is to rebut Cathy's arguments, "not use state power to suppress them," says Glenn Greenwald at Salon. "You can't cheer when political officials punish the expression of views you dislike and then expect to be taken seriously when you wrap yourself in the banner of free speech to protest state punishment of views you like and share."
"Rahm Emanuel's dangerous free speech attack"
And Emanuel is hardly one to talk: "As I recall, Rahm spent a few years working for a guy" who opposed same-sex marriage until only a few months ago, says AllahPundit at Hot Air. Cathy, at least, honestly opposes gay marriage, whereas Obama "cared more about getting elected than standing up publicly for something he privately believed." The view from Emanuel's "high horse must be amazing."
"Rahm Emanuel: 'Chick-fil-A values are not Chicago values'"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The mystery behind China's aggressive push into space
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- Yes, Republicans can impeach President Obama
- What religious traditionalists can teach us about sex
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- The 5 best and worst states for a well-lived life
- Why Texas' abortion rates aren't falling as quickly as everyone expected
- Why all drugs should be legal. (Yes, even heroin.)
- The 6 best low-cost smartphones
- 7 ideas from ancient thinkers that will improve your modern life
Subscribe to the Week