5 Reactions to The New Yorker's Anti-Chick-fil-A Screed

Jonathan Merritt: Why Don't Progressives Boycott Gasoline from Nations Hostile to LGBT Issues?

Jonathan Merritt
Jonathan Merritt's third book, "Jesus Is Better Than You Imagined" was released on April 2, 2014. |

Author and progressive Christian writer Jonathan Merritt, who is supportive of gay rights, criticized the progressives, noting how quick they are to decry a Christian-owned chicken sandwich shop but do not push back against overtly hostile regimes, where a significant portion of the world's oil is produced.

"I'm not going to give a penny to @ChickfilA because their owners aren't fully supportive of LGBT marriage," declares the "progressive" activist as he fills up his car with gasoline hailing from Saudi Arabia, a country where LGBT sex is punishable by fines, flogging, and prison," Merritt tweeted.

A commenter replied that the United States gets only 8 percent of its oil from Saudi Arabia, chiding Merritt, "but don't let the facts ruin a good story."

Merritt responded in the tweet thread: "8% [South Africa]: LGBT sex punishable by fines, flogging, prison, 4.8% other Persian Gulf: LGBT sex is illegal, often death penalty. 5.9% Venezuela: LGBT couples not protected from discrimination by law. 5.2% Nigeria: LGBT couples not protected from discrimination by law. Violence against LGBT couples notoriously bad and unpunished. 5.1% other African nations: None of which fully protect LGBT people under the law.

"You are right, friend, facts are a funny thing."

"About 1/3rd of America's oil comes from entities that have much worse views on LGBT relationships than any leader at Chick-Fil-A. Yet I don't know a single progressive friend who thinks for a moment about where his gas comes from."

Merritt also talked about the issue in his most recent FaithAngle podcast with Kirsten Powers.  

In July of 2012 Merritt defended the fast food chain against charges that they were a "hate group" in The Atlantic. The controversy at the time was over an interview in which Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy outlined his belief in traditional sexual ethics. 

"On both sides of our latest culture war divide, we must learn to have level-headed disagreements without resorting to accusations of hate speech and boycotts," he wrote at the time.

"I don't care how my dry cleaner votes. I just want to know if he/she can press my Oxfords without burning my sleeves. I find no compelling reason to treat sandwiches differently than shirts."

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