Itâs National Same Sex Kiss Day! Organized on Facebook,Â the love protest will be held at Chick-fil-A stores around the country at 8:00pm ET, 5:00pm Pacific. The local Chick-fil-A is on 6750 W Sunset Blvd at Highland in Hollywood.
Expect protesters protesting the love protest, a pointÂ raised in the LA Times:
Nationwide, at least 15,000 people have agreed to participate in the kiss-in, [New York-based political activist Carly] McGehee said. But even among LGBT supporters, some wonder whether such an in-your-face act might be too provocative, or amount to taunting.
“I respect not patronizing their establishment … but by taunting them in their establishment is hate-filled and inciting anger and hate,” said one commenter on a Causes.com page urging people to participate in the kiss-in.
Suggested another: “Its okay to disagree but its not okay to confront a person on their views in such an aggressive and provocative manner. There are forums for that.”
Nationally renown blogger Pam Spaulding says that raises from red flags for her:
IMHO, I’m not keen on this as an effective protest tool — it’s not about our right to love (ostensibly why gay couples will be there kissing), it’s about Chick-fil-As record of anti-gay discrimination and funding of groups that want us DEAD, endorse “ex-gay” therapy, and to deny LGBTs basic civil rights. The kiss-in seems more like a stunt for shock value that the fundies will try capitalize on by tying the action to sex acts that they abhor. The “ick” factor has been one of the major issues these folks cling to, like it or not.
The bottom line is that the record-breaking sales for Chick-fil-A shows just how much homophobia still exists out there, LGBT equality gains have come through the courts, some legislative efforts, but largely has not been driven by social acceptance of our lives and desire to extend civil rights. That’s the hard truth in all equality movements. We have not seen racism or sexism disappear; in fact we’ve seen bold open displays of both in the last few years that reminds us that laws on the books doesn’t mean bias goes away. It merely goes underground and erupts occasionally — and grotesquely — when the status quo is rocked too much in places that have to be dragged kicking and screaming into social changeâŚ..
UPDATE:Â A commenter said this on the blog:
“You all might want to google âQueer Nationâ and âACT-UPâ âŚ not to mention something called âStonewallâ.
This is laughable and insulting to the direct action of those groups. If they want to make a comparison of commitment, then these protesters should block access to CFAs and get press for being arrested for civil disobedience. In the end Iâll be happy to say I was wrong about it if it turns out to effect positive change, I just think the kiss-ins are a missed organizing opportunity to take control of the frame, not play into the fundie frameâŚ..
And lastly, one cannot compare today’s demonstration to the act of Rosa Parks or a lunch counter sit-in, something I’m seeing cited repeatedly on social media. In those cases the acts were well-planned and organized by social justice organizations and those participating fully expected to be arrested. None of the kiss-in participants are putting that level of sacrifice on the line. It’s a display of PDA for cameras and the patrons of CFA.
Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy has said a lot of things about families like Marci’s.
But itâs the $5 million in donations that he and his company have given to anti-LGBT hate groups that causes the most damage. If Dan Cathy is going to spend millions trying to break apart loving families, he should at least meet the people his money is hurting.
No strings. Just a chance to break bread and share conversation with Marci, her wife and their two kids. Sheâs even promised to make chicken.
Danâs ruffled a lot of feathers these past few weeks. I think itâs time he finally understands why.
Steven Goldstein, Executive Director at Garden State Equality is sponsoring a âDialogue Day with Chick-Fil-Aâ today, providing instructions and names and numbers to make it easier to follow through on calling any one of the 22 stores in New Jersey. Hereâs the email sent to members (minus phone numbers):
Today, Friday, August 3, 2012 is Garden State Equalityâs Dialogue Day with Chick-Fil-A.Â Â Â Weâd like you to call the operator of your nearest Chick-Fil-A restaurant in New Jersey to ask him or her to meet with a local group of Garden State Equality members so they can understand in person how the national ownersâ anti-LGBT advocacy hurts real people deeply â families, couples and children who yearn for equality.Â Â We ask you to call even if you personally may not be able to join such a meeting.
Instructions:â¨â¨1.Â Â Below please find a list of the 22 Chick-Fil-A stores across New Jersey with the store locations, phone numbers and individual operatorsâ names.Â Â Ask for the operator by name.Â If he or she isnât there, you can ask to speak to the senior manager on duty.â¨2.Â Â When you call, say:Â âIâm a member of Garden State Equality and we want equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.Â Â We know the national owners of Chick-Fil-A donât believe in equality, but we hope you may be fair.Â Â We believe in talking and mutual respect.Â Â Are you willing to meet a group of us in the next few weeks?â
3.Â Â If the owner says no, express your pain, not anger, as you conclude the conversation quickly and respectfully.Â Â Respond: Â âIâm hurt you wonât meet us.Â Â Iâll let others know.Â Â I wish you well.âÂ Â Please do not engage in hostility.Â Â We advocate equality in love.
4.Â Â If the owner says maybe, respond:Â âThen Iâm going to call you back on Monday, is that okay?âÂ Â Then please do call back on Monday.
5.Â Â If the owner says yes, respond:Â Â âThatâs great.Â Before we set up a day and time, Iâm going to talk to others to see their schedules.Â Â Iâm going to call you back next week, is that okay?â
6.Â Â Then please email Chick@GardenStateEquality.org your name and your phone number, the location below of the Chick-Fil-A you called â thatâs important so we know which Chick-Fil-A youâre talking about â and the operatorâs response, whether yes, no or maybe.Â Â If the operator said yes, we will call you and other Garden State Equality members in your area next week so we can coordinate schedules to do the meeting.
We understand that activists in other states are staging âkiss-insâ at Chick-Fil-A stores.Â We respect everyone who engages in the activism that inspires them.Â Â At Garden State Equality, weâre aiming for something beyond one day.Â Â We aim to start dialogues wherever we can.Â Â We want everyone to see the love and commitment of families with LGBT people â indeed, to see all people as real people.Â Â That, we believe, is the basis of winning equality everywhere.
Meanwhile, the Courage Campaign has created a useful crowdsourcing and organizing tool under the website Eat More Equality:
Â Thousands of Americans reacted when the CEO of Chick-fil-A declared his opposition to greater equality for all Americans.
Together we’ll let Chick-fil-A know that corporate bigotry is not tolerated in America.