Time Columnist Compares Chick-fil-A to South African Apartheid

In the August 13 edition of Time magazine, "humor" columnist Joel Stein compared eating a Chick-fil-A sandwich to rock musicians playing at Sun City in South Africa during the apartheid era of racial segregation.

"As a guy who is very pro-gay rights, I desperately wished  I'd eaten that chicken sandwich before it became symbolic," he wrote.

"I know a lot of musicians refused to play Sun City during apartheid, but I bet Sun City had crappy chicken sandwiches."

Stein then engaged with people who argued against boycotting fast-food chains over political or social disagreements, like screenwriter Matt Kemp:

Kemp, who is not in favor of gay marriage, has been yelled at a few times by people driving past who called him a bigot. But he thinks trying to police your purchases on the basis of a corporate leader's political beliefs is not only impossible but against the notion of engaging with people you disagree with. Plus, Chick-fil-A doesn't discriminate against gay customers or employees. In fact, he argued, its stance is the same as Obama's was until recently.

Still, after a gay man said "I hope I'm not going to hell" for eating Chick-fil-A," and he wanted to know how a friend's "soul felt" after he took a bite, the friend said "It's no better than Jack in the Box." So Stein said he went for a veggie meatball sandwich from a gourmet market where "the guy behind the counter told me he was way into gay marriage."

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis