Over winter break, something wonderful happened. After 18 years, eight months and 19 days, I ceased to be a Chick-fil-A virgin.

Gasp. I know. Who hasn’t tried Chick-fil-A? In my defense, it’s usually overshadowed in Michigan by big names such as Taco Bell and McDonald’s. Plus, with a dietitian mother and a father whose hobby is gourmet cooking, fast food rarely gets accolades in my house.

But on Jan. 19, I was in Maryland with two of my best friends, absolutely starving with a total of $10 in my wallet. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

The food was surprisingly delicious and relatively healthy. I can’t ever refuse fries, but these surpassed my extremely low standards.

So, when I was invited to Chick-fil-A’s Free FryDay on Facebook a few weeks ago–part of a promotion to advertise their new Heinz Dip & Squeeze ketchup–I was somewhat excited. There’s a Chick-fil-A in our student union and, as far as I was concerned, if they hadn’t been participating before, they were now.

As the big day (March 4) approached, I decided to browse the posts on the event’s wall and see if anyone had anything interesting to say. One headline in particular caught my eye: Yes, Chick-fil-A Says, We Explicitly Do Not Like Same-Sex Couples | Change.org News.

Now I support diversity of opinion. Everyone has the right to freedom of speech. Pursuit of happiness and all that. But really, Chick-fil-A? What have gays and lesbians done to you to make you hate them? Are you biased because chicken is your featured product? If that’s the case, I fully understand. If roosters only had sex with other roosters, you’d be out of luck.

Yet in the article, the president of Chick-fil-A said he “wants gay people to share no hard feelings,” probably as a precaution to maintain revenue. Essentially, they’re authorizing the bashing of potential customers and the subsequent expectation that gays still cough up their cash in support of the company that just insulted them. Yeah, right.

With the same-sex marriage bill still stalled in the Maryland House of Delegates, this issue is more important than ever. I’m straight, but I believe that anyone should be able to officially declare their love for another person. I can’t imagine getting weird looks for holding my boyfriend’s hand in public or not having the option someday of standing at the front of a church or on the edge of a beach and vowing to be with someone ’til death do us part. That’s sad and unjust.

So skip the free fries at Chick-fil-A tomorrow. They’re not worth the inequality they symbolize.


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