Poll: Chicken, With a Side of Culture Wars

The lines are drawn for fast food chain Chick-fil-A. They will be drawn in Walnut Creek Sept. 20 with planned opening and gay rights protest; Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day was Wednesday around the country and in Fairfield.

Update 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, added link to Goodman video.

I'll have my chicken sandwich with lettuce, tomato and a side order of social consciousness and free speech rights.

Chick-fil-A is becoming more famous for cultural values than for chicken. There was a family values backlash Wednesday with "Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day" around the country, including Fairfield, Solano County.

Walnut Creek is soon to be such a culture wars flashpoint Sept. 20 with a planned gay rights protest to coincide with the planned opening of a Chick-fil-A on North Main Street. Chick-fil-A is expanding in Northern California.

“It’s a First Amendment right issue. He (Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy) has his right to think and say whatever he likes,” Fairfield diner Jerry Pollard told CBS San Francisco.

Last month Cathy, in an interview in July with The Baptist Press, said, "We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that."

Actor John Goodman has lampooned the controversy with a new video in which he plays the late Colonel Sanders, founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken, making a play for gay customers. Caveat parents — Goodman says a naughty word.

Former presidential candidate and Fox News contributor Mike Huckabee had the idea for Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, according to Fox News.

Register your Chick-fil-A opinion in a Patch poll at the bottom. We offer three different views in the poll, but there are many more opinions with different nuances — add a comment below.

Brand approval

Chick-fil-A has suffered a loss of brand approval since the posting of Cathy's interview, according to Polling organization YouGov.

Just before Cathy's interview was published, Chick-fil-A's Index score was 65, well above the Top National Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) Sector average score of 46. Just four days later, however, Chick-fil-A's score had fallen to 47, while last week, the chain had a score of 39, compared to the Top National QSR Sector average score of 43, according to a piece in the Huffington Post.

In Walnut Creek, a Chick-fil-A with drive-through service is part of a big construction project with a new 24-Hour Fitness at 2750 N. Main St.

X August 02, 2012 at 03:35 AM
Terrible poll. The author of the poll clearly doesn't understand the issue at hand. This has nothing to do with CFA's statements. It is about the groups to whom Chick-Fil-A donates money & how those groups harm gay people, their children, and place children at large in danger.
Daniel August 02, 2012 at 05:33 AM
Ana casals August 02, 2012 at 04:00 PM
So if I disagree with your concept of marriage I am a danger to children. Hmmm interesting. Or perhaps just plain silly! It's a sad day when people in our country believe that they need to force their way if thinking onto everyone. Sorry you can keep trying but that's not going to happen. I never try and force my beliefs on anyone. I can share my truths and if you choose to agree or not it's absolutely your choice, no judgments from me to follow. That is the way it's meant to be. There are bad apples in every bunch that unfortunately end up being the stereotype, thanks to the media. The truth is I will keep my way of thinking, honor my God, while being a good loving person in my community. God loves us all! So don't buy into the concept that Christians believe otherwise. The USA is a place for all freedoms including relief from religious persecution. You have your rights now let us have ours!!!
Laurel Ferns August 02, 2012 at 04:00 PM
Exactly, thats whats wrong with polls in general. Faulty premise, faulty results. Chick flla can do what they want with their money, but it wont be my money they are using to lobby politicians to enact laws that discriminate and segregate.
RBCruz August 02, 2012 at 04:09 PM
Faulty poll. The false "Christians" love to hate and build walls, violating even their own religion which says not to judge others. Whereas the gays want the human rights everyone has and to be free of prejudice. The poll above, one could say, offers the opportunity to say it would be OK for the KKK to open a business in Walnut Creek.
CT- West August 02, 2012 at 07:24 PM
Let them build their place, they have rights also. Just because they don't conform to California (Liberal) standards doesnt mean they are bad people. Sorry, I can't fall down crying everytime some special interest group belly aches.
Charles schwartzmunde August 02, 2012 at 07:33 PM
But you have no problem with this restaurant chain's politics? I support both sides, rights to free speech, but not caring in this case is really supportive of this fast food chain politics'.
Charles schwartzmunde August 02, 2012 at 07:33 PM
Why isn't this new restaurant chain next to the Library?
Joseph David Dacus August 02, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Whatever your view about Chick-Fil-A, their founder and/or CEO, and their religious views about "traditional" marriage (If I remember my Bible correctly~isn't that four wives--including my dead brothers wife--several concubines, and some slaves...including children?), I think it shows quite a poor and myopic memory for them to scream "war on religion." It was only a few months back, when JC Penny had same gender models in their catalog, and named Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson, these same people, who are squealing about LGBT back-lash against their chicken homophobic bigotry, were boycotting JC Penny for expressing their views. I'd say karma came around sooner than they thought. However, I am not in favor of supporting a corporation that has given thousands of dollars to Washington lobbyists to provide support to Ugandan genocidal persecution of homosexuals in Africa. That is supporting the murder of people we as a nation now hold as honored and sacred partners in our fine military forces. Time to shed a little light under the rock where this kind of bigotry and hate hides!
Kim August 02, 2012 at 08:44 PM
I'm happy to be able to drive to Walnut Creek for a chicken sandwich and waffle fries than driving 1.5 hours to Fairfield.
X August 02, 2012 at 09:41 PM
Ana - Please deal in facts. You're rambling nonsense. The groups that CFA supports with its donations harm children and gay people. They deny children many legal protections, advocate for the imprisonment of their gay parents, and have called for the deportation of gay people. Of course you don't want to address these facts because having to admit that you're willing to sacrifice the welfare of children to promote your dislike of marriage equality doesn't say much about your moral compass.
X August 02, 2012 at 09:47 PM
And the great thing is that those opposed to CFA's donation policies want you to have the ability to drive to WC for that sandwich. They just want you to be honest that you're supporting a company that donates money to an organization that opposed the US condemning Uganda's murder the gays bill, that has called for the criminalization of gay behavior, and that wants gay people deported from their own country. Just be honest about the policies you support with your money.
Joseph David Dacus August 02, 2012 at 09:47 PM
Why wait: There is a Chicken and Waffles place right next door to Cost Plus~ knock yourself out!
Bryn Thenell August 03, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Chick-fil-a has a right to open up in Walnut Creek and I have the right to not do business with them. I hope most of WC decides the same.
Lance Howland (Editor) August 03, 2012 at 12:26 AM
Hey, ElectraDaddy. You hurt my feelings. I wrote the "terrible" poll. I take it you want to reword the second choice: 'The company president's statement was divisive. Boycott the new restaurant in Walnut Creek.' How would you have worded it? (You hurt my feelings just a wee bit; I will recover.) -- Lance Howland, editor, Walnut Creek Patch
CT- West August 03, 2012 at 12:35 AM
Will someone just tell me how good their chicken is ? Give your politics a few days off,
Stephen Fredricks August 03, 2012 at 12:47 AM
Anti-Sodomites vs Pro-Sodomites
Sco August 03, 2012 at 02:24 AM
Agree, and I think they and the vast majority of Contra Costa Countians will too. I bet plenty of folks from Berkeley and other parts west will truck on over for a bite. Even San Franciscans (sshhh!). There are bad actors on both sides of this 'values' issue. Electradaddy is stuck on the 'harm' thing, but his side's hands aren't clean either.
nora urany August 04, 2012 at 12:51 AM
Well, lets see. If my parent who gave up everything to escape from the Communist who took over their country are right, then they are doing it again right here in America. Its called divide and conquer. Slowly over the years they have quietly and carefully pitted one group against the other using racism and other terms to divide the country. When a Conservative says something its headline news and they are called racist and gay haters. When Liberals do it the newspapers are silent and again use the racist cards again. So if they say something negative about God, Church, marriage and families its OK. But, if Conservatives give their opinion its racist. For over 100 years people in America had their own opinions on everything and they were living in a free country where they could say it without worrying about the secret police showing up at their door and taking them away in the middle of the night never to be seen again. Americans of every type, color, race and religion died so we could have this freedom of choice. I may not like or agree with your opinion but, I put my life on the line for 20 years in the military to give you the right to say it in safety. I love that I live in such a great country that if I do not like what someone says it allows me the choice to buy there or not. But, no one in this great country has the right to tell people, or business that they cannot operate in their city just because they do not like the owners views. Just don' eat there.
Triple Canopy August 04, 2012 at 02:01 AM
Caution.. the liberals are confusing "tolerance" with "acceptance". .. there is a VAST difference between the two. Mr. Cathy's opinion is protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Kurt Miller August 05, 2012 at 07:59 PM
I don't see the problem here. The owner states his views in public. Fine. Now anyone that disagrees can not patronize his establishment if they choose not to. This is far better than the anonymous donations that go to so called PACs and shield the contributors from any repercussions.
H Hudson August 14, 2012 at 10:11 PM
It wasn't meant to be a 'scientific' poll...only people's opinions! I disagree with you.......the issue is that the man spoke his mind & stated his beliefs & he is being greatly maligned for them. Sorry...he is entitled to believe whatever he chooses, & to state his beliefs openly. This is still supposed to be a 'free country'. I do not want to see the thought police squad out and about. As to how 'those groups' "harm" gay people, again I disagree. I assume your definition of 'harm' is that you expect 100% agreement with your beliefs & if there is disagreement, you interpret it as 'harmful'. And how children are 'in danger' from him stating his beliefs, I daresay, that is quite farfetched.
H Hudson August 14, 2012 at 10:26 PM
Yes, it is interesting that since this man prefers the 'biblical' (man/woman) definition of marriage, he is labeled a bigot & homophobe. In other words, since you don't agree with OUR viewpoint (gay 'marriage'), we will label you any despicable term we can come up with. It seems the intolerance comes from that side....we accept only 100% agreement with our position...otherwise, we will demonstrate against the business and petition cities to not allow you to operate etc. For that reason alone......the intolerance of varying opinions........I will be purchasing something at their location. The man has a right to speak his mind.....as you said, you spent 20 years in the military to defend the freedoms this country enjoys....and now , people are supposed to become fearful of speaking their minds if a viewpoint is not currently 'popular'. No siree Bob.


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