A little lunchtime quick post.
I have not bought Starbucks coffee since they announced their overt, institutional support for legalizing “gay marriage” in the state of Washington.
It was a painless decision, really: the coffee is terribly over-roasted and not all that good. Sure, the nearest coffee shop to my office serves Starbucks, but I take this as an incentive and opportunity to reduce my overall dependence on coffee. To be sure, I purchased plenty of it before that announcement. Back then they did provide benefits to same-sex partners of their employees, but that sort of thing is their corporate policy prerogative. Corporate policies can be whatever the company wants them to be, and the employees are free to work there or not to work there. Free choice. Starbucks is also certainly free to support political causes with their money. And I am free not to support them with mine.
The other day I ate at Chick-fil-A, and I gave the three main reasons why.
In both cases, the decision was mine. I chose to buy Chik-fil-A, and I consistently choose not to buy Starbucks. In neither case is it appropriate for the government to coerce my, or anyone else’s, activity in these matters. The power of government should not be brought to bear against Chik-fil-A because of the opinions of its CEO and founder (regardless of what that opinion is), nor should the government give preferential treatment to Starbucks because of their corporate policies vis-a-vis questions in the political sphere (regardless of what those corporate policies are).
Conversely, I would oppose governments banning Starbucks from a locality due to their support of any given political cause, and I would oppose governments giving Chik-fil-A preferential treatment because of the opinions of their CEO and founder.
But those on the other side of the question don’t seem to have any problem using the power of government to silence political opponents and coerce consciences.
The governments of Chicago, Boston, Washington, D.C., and perhaps Philly want to “protect” their citizens, which is their role, but Chik-fil-A is not a criminal enterprise. It’s a chicken sandwich restaurant. If a Chik-fil-A francishee builds a restaurant in a locality one of two things will happen. Either a) the people will choose to buy the sandwiches, thus sustaining the Chik-fil-A franchise and the franchise will stick around; or b) the people will choose not to buy the sandwiches and the franchise will close down. It’s a business: it won’t stick around where it is not wanted.
But that is unacceptable to those on the other side of the question. Whereas I can accept that Starbucks will have a corporate policy to support and promote “gay marriage,” merely opposing the policy by withholding my coffee purchase dollars, the other side cannot stop there: they want to destroy the opposition with the power of government.
Which side really believes in “live and love and let live,” again?
Vote with your dollars, by all means. But as soon as you begin using the power of government to crush the opposition you have crossed a dangerous line that you will one day regret crossing when “the devil turns ’round on you.”
“Yes, I give the devil benefit of law for my own safety sake.” — Robert Bolt, “A Man for All Seasons”