I spent New Year's Eve at the red-blooded, all-American epicenter of college football: at the Chick-fil-A Bowl, next to Dan Cathy, as his personal guest. It was among the most unexpected moments of my life.
Yes, after months of personal phone calls, text messages and in-person meetings, I am coming out in a new way, as a friend of Chick-fil-A's president and COO, Dan Cathy, and I am nervous about it. I have come to know him and Chick-fil-A in ways that I would not have thought possible when I first started hearing from LGBT students about their concerns over the chicken chain's giving practices.
For many this news of friendship might be shocking. After all, I am an out, 40-year-old gay man and a lifelong activist for equality. I am also the founder and executive director of Campus Pride, the leading national organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) and ally college students. Just seven months ago our organization advanced a national campaign against Chick-fil-A for the millions of dollars it donated to anti-LGBT organizations and divisive political groups that work each day to harm hardworking LGBT young people, adults and our families. I have spent quite some time being angry at and deeply distrustful of Dan Cathy and Chick-fil-A. If he had his way, my husband of 18 years and I would never be legally married.
Why was I now standing next to him at one of the most popular football showdowns? How could I dare think to have a relationship with a man and a company that have advocated against who I am; who would take apart my family in the name of "traditional marriage"; whose voice and views represented exactly the opposite of those of the students for whom I advocate every day? Dan is the problem, and Chick-fil-A is the enemy, right? ...
I rarely post on anything dealing with same-sex issues at the Kruse Kronicle because my experience is that people simply cannot carry on a respectful cyber-conversation about the issue. I make an exception here because this story illustrates so well what needs to be happening more and more in our culture, especially in the church! Kudos to Windmeyer and Cathy for showing the way.
(Note: If you can't be respectful (from whatever postion you hold), don't comment!. I will delete the first disrespectful comment (name calling, characterizing people as evil or idiots, etc.). I will close comments with the second. I don't have time in my life to play referee to childish behavior.)(HT: John Armstrong)