Politics

After San Antonio Blocks Chick-Fil-A, Texas Conservatives Reignite Fight for Religious Freedom

Chick-fil-a religious freedom conservativesChick-fil-A may cater, but not to the demands San Antonio liberals care about. Now, three weeks into the City Council’s decision to ban the restaurant from the local airport, Texas conservatives know: This case for their religious liberty bill was made to order.

“Everyone has a place here, and everyone should feel welcome when they walk through our airport,” City Councilman Roberto Treviño told the media after the council’s 6-4 vote to boot the chicken chain from opening a shop in the terminal. Why? Because the owners dare to donate to charities like the Salvation Army. “Ridiculous!” Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, responded on Twitter. “That’s not Texas,” he argued.

Unfortunately, the state’s conservatives worry, that will be Texas if something isn’t done to protect religious freedom.

“With this decision,” Treviño insisted, the council “reaffirmed the work [San Antonio] has done to become a champion of inclusion.” Until, of course, that “inclusion” applies to people who support natural marriage and sexuality. Where’s the equality for them? That’s a question the Lone Star State is trying to answer with the introduction of HB 1035, the Free to Believe Act, and the First Amendment Defense Act.

Chick-fil-A may be a private company, but that doesn’t mean it has to surrender its beliefs at the dining room door. And the same goes for any American trying to live out their faith in the public square.

The San Antonio City Council thinks it can’t, “in good conscience,” sign an airport agreement with a business owned by Christians. But isn’t that exactly what this debate is about—conscience? Just because the Cathy family owns a national restaurant chain doesn’t mean they’re excluded from the First Amendment.

Regardless of what liberals say, religious freedom isn’t just for churches. It’s for every business, wedding vendor, adoption agency, charity, doctor—every citizen. And that’s what HB 1035 is hoping to remind Texans.

“We’re waking up in an era where Christian faith, specifically, seems to be under attack,” said Republican state Sen. Charles Perry. In the current political climate, he’s worried Christians can’t practice their faith openly without facing consequences—including the loss of their jobs and livelihood.

Under the Free to Believe Act, government officials can’t punish Texans for thinking differently than the radical left. That’s just “a license to discriminate,” LGBT activists argue.

Not true, Republicans like Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick fired back. No one is trying to create a religious excuse for businesses to turn people away. No believer I know would want that—let alone lobby for it. As even Chick-fil-A has said, everyone should feel welcome at its restaurant.

This debate has never been about Christians discriminating against anyone—it’s about stopping the government from discriminating against them.

Even in some of the more high-profile wedding vendor cases, where the left is trying to paint Christians as intolerant monsters who want to slam the door shut on same-sex couples, you’ll find that—to a person—each shop owner was more than happy to sell the activists something off their shelves. In fact, Barronelle Stutzman of Arlene’s Flowers considered the man who sued her to be one of her best customers.

I knew he was in a relationship with a man and he knew I was a Christian. But that never clouded the friendship for either of us or threatened our shared creativity—until he asked me to design something special to celebrate his upcoming wedding. If all he’d asked for were prearranged flowers, I’d gladly have provided them. If the celebration were for his partner’s birthday, I’d have been delighted to pour my best into the challenge. But as a Christian, weddings have a particular significance.

In Chick-fil-A’s case, the left’s overreaction is almost comical. The Cathy family hasn’t done any overt lobbying on natural marriage for years. In fact, they’ve intentionally backed away from taking a stand on issues of biblical morality—yet still, they’re a target.

That ought to show everyone that there’s just no appeasing the left. Simply being a Christian in the workforce—even a polite and politically silent one—is enough to draw the liberals’ wrath.

But the Democrats’ new terrain, where your personal views disqualify you from participating in society, is a dangerous precedent.

If liberals choose not to eat Chick-fil-A, that’s their right. Just like it’s our right not to shop at Target until they stop putting women and children in danger with their bathroom policies. What isn’t our decision—or theirs—is to exclude these businesses from the market altogether.

Originally published in Tony Perkins’ Washington Update, which is written with the aid of Family Research Council senior writers.

Reprinted with permission from - The Daily Signal - by Tony Perkins

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Frank S.

I went to Austin yesterday to testify in support of HB 1035. Unfortunately I had to leave at 6:30 PM and never had an opportunity to “say my piece.” I did hand my 2-minute testimony to the clerk…hopefully someone looked at it. If interested, here’s what I want to say: In Defense of Chick-fil-A, or More Importantly, Our First Amendment Rights I’m here today to specifically address the San Antonio Airport and Chick-fil-A conflict, caused by ill-guided decisions by some city council members. As I read the United States Constitution, specifically the Preamble and the First Amendment, I’m of the strong opinion that Councilman Trevino and the five other council members who voted with him have demonstrated a failure to abide by the Rule of Law while in pursuit of their own politically correct agenda. Clearly, this is yet another attempt by government—this time local government—to overstep their authority; it… Read more »

Carol

I’m so sick of these self righteous leftist screaming whenever they think someone is “judging” them, but they have no trouble judging or stereotyping those that disagree with them. If the left doesn’t like Chick-fil-A, then don’t eat there but they have NO RIGHT to stop others from going there! And how does the city elites get to determine who opens shop at the airport? Don’t the people have a say, after all, they are the ones who will use the airport? Tyranny everywhere! The left is NOT the party of compassion and inclusion but the party of conformity, tyranny, hypocrisy, perversion, and intolerance!!!! God help America!

TomB

Roberto Trevino, born and raised in Sunnyvale California, is another transplant that also brought his “blue state” ideology to Texas. In simple terms, if Chick-fil-A serves a chicken sandwich to all customers … that’s all that Roberto Trevino needs to know.

Bill TX3

The left’s agenda to block anybody’s or any organizations’s right to have their own opinions, views, and beliefs that differ from the left/Democrats is the first step to Totalitarianism. All government elected officials (at all levels) and appointed government administrative officials violate their oaths to uphold the Constitution and law of the land when they act in such a manner. A bill/law must be passed which will remove those persons from their public position because of their violations of oath and law. They violate the trust of the people and the laws currently in place.

Drue

I support Chik-Fil-A and their beliefs. Closing on Sunday may be part of the issue, but I support them to honor their sabbath. The food is wonderful, they hire seniors and teens alike, the restaurant is always clean and welcoming. I too wish we had one near us.

Dr. Covert

I agree with you that this is Christian discrimination.

Burton Pauly

I predict that the Chick-fil-A will win out in the San Antonio case . The left is always snubbing conservatives, and their businesses.

Gus Philpott

Heading to my nearest Chick-fil-A for lunch today. Thanks for the reminder.

Howie

If you’re a TRUE American that values our Constitutional Rights and Freedoms now is the time to stand tall with the Cathy Family and say NO to the Liberal Lefts incessant attempts to turn America into what Germany went through under Hitler. First the Gypsys, and the sick, then the Jews and now Her in American Christians and Jews are under attack.

Contact your Reps and Senators both locally and nationally and tell them they stand with us or they’re out!

Susan LeVay

The left have become a very evil group. If they want to continue on this road, they will have to be prepared to accept God’s wrath.

MikeG

The left seems to think that their thoughts and beliefs are what everyone should think. WRONG!! If there were a true and honest vote (one person, one vote) on this subject (or most leftist ideas) , they would lose in a landslide. Live and let live is the majority feeling. If you aren’t harming anyone, go for it. When you are looking to forcibly impose your beliefs, then there is a problem.

Judy Condon

The next thing the city councilors will be doing is changing the name of the city from San Antonio (Saint Anthony) to Antonio. The left is attempting to turn us into a secular society! God help and bless this country.

Jon Gorman

Might be time for consideration of Muslim beliefs when approving applications to open any businesses. Woman’s rights, rights of gays and others are circumscribed under their belief system. Bet the cowards on that corrupt City Council would NEVER even consider acting against Islamic beliefs or their believers. Might be the end of their lives or careers. These disgusting radical liberals need to use the force of government to injure or destroy anyone NOT believing their NEWLY invented belief system. This case needs a personal law suit that will cost these criminals money from their personal accounts. Federal violations of civil rights under the color of law can be directed against elected officials PERSONALLY. Time to knock these Police State moralists out of the box.

Jan13

Wish we had Chick -fil-A near my town. I keep hearing how good they are, like to try one.

Raymond Hudson

Until I read this article, I had never had a chance to eat at Chic-fil-A.. In support of their rights, I decided to stop in and have a meal… I found that I enjoyed the food. Now I will take my wife and we will eat there more othen. Chic-fil-A we support your religious rights and you make excellent Chicken…. RH

A wise observer

Per the Article, “This debate has never been about Christians discriminating against anyone—it’s about stopping the government from discriminating against them.” That is a perfect example of why the U.S. citizens of 1789 objected to the Adoption of the Constitution until they received promises that a “Bill of Rights” would be incorporated into it by having them as the first ten amendments to the new constitution. You will see that they are things to protect the citizens from an overbearing government. Today, the average citizen is most familiar with the First (Freedom of religion, speech, and the press; rights of assembly and petition) and the Second ( Right to bear arms) amendments, but less so with (3) Housing of soldiers in private residences, (4) Search and arrest warrants must be reasonable and through court orders based upon probable cause, (5) Rights in criminal cases [i.e. no double jeopardy, not testifying… Read more »

Ginger

LBGT is wrong no matter how you slice that cake. I’m not condemning it. I’m not judging you. It’s against God’s laws and that’s all that matters. In God We Trust.

Diana

Chick needsctobsue these councilmen ll 5 and demand them Resign Immediately can’t allow such abuses anymore by any official including judges, congress, senate, Our CONSTITUTION as Written is the Law of the Land we must demand it is followed to the letter, can’t have Un-American people in our government anymore and remove those that are in there now. Have never seen such disgusting behavior by so called adults.

Georgia Womack

All I have to say is I have made my last trip to San Antonio!! I am a Christian and do NOT feel welcome there anymore?

Emmett

Christians all over this country had better be ready for the battles to come including armed conflict. Fighting may seem to not be the “Christian” thing to do but let’s consider the Crusades and where would we be if Christian countries had not fought against evil. Consider WW1 and WW2 and what would have happened if imperialistic Japan or Nazi Germany had won. Consider the cold war and what would have happened if we had lost a war with Russia. Soviet Russia killed millions of their own people. Who would they be killing if they had conquered western countries? You can bet that Christians would have been on the list.