Chick-fil-A stores are popping up in Manhattan, and one of the uppity liberals who writes for The New Yorker isn’t happy. Dan Piepenbring has written a vicious piece denouncing the popular chain for everything from its Christian ownership to its adorable cow ads. In “Chick-fil-A’s Creepy Infiltration of New York City,” he gripes that the fast-food giant is replacing mom-and-pop restaurants in NYC. But where was he when McDonald’s and Starbucks started replacing them?
The truth is, Piepenbring wouldn’t be attacking Chick-fil-A if its WinShape Foundation hadn’t donated to causes dedicated to the sanctity of marriage.
The truth is, Piepenbring wouldn’t be attacking Chick-fil-A if its WinShape Foundation hadn’t donated to causes dedicated to the sanctity of marriage. He uses it as a ruse to attack all kinds of things about the chain, absurd things. He exaggerates the Christian aspects of Chick-fil-A, portraying them as annoying, in-your-face features of the chain.
He refers to this derisively as “pervasive Christian traditionalism.” He cannot hide his contempt for Christians. But for the average person eating at Chick-fil-A, they likely wouldn’t notice much of a difference between the chain and a McDonald’s.
He is disgusted that Chick-fil-A’s headquarters in Atlanta “is adorned with Bible verses and a statue of Jesus washing a disciple’s feet.” But again, the average person eating at the chain would not see this.
He claims that “The restaurant’s corporate purpose still begins with the words ‘to glorify God,’ and that proselytism thrums below the surface of the Fulton Street restaurant, which has the ersatz homespun ambiance of a megachurch.” Yet there is no witnessing going on.
The interior doesn’t look like a megachurch. It looks like a McDonald’s. Piepenbring can’t cite one instance of the phrase “to glorify God” inside the chain.
Manhattanites Love Chick-fil-A
He claims that Chick-fil-A doesn’t fit in with Manhattan culture, jeering, “Its arrival in the city augurs worse than a load of manure on the F train.” Yet he grudgingly admits the popularity of the chain. “One of the Manhattan locations estimates that it sells a sandwich every six seconds, and the company has announced plans to open as many as a dozen more storefronts in the city.” Why does he get to decide what is Manhattan culture? Sounds like people in Manhattan are happy bringing Chick-fil-A into their culture.
He tries to portray the culture at Chick-fil-A as some kind of corporate Christian cult. But Chick-fil-A is the antithesis of cold corporate culture. It provides a family type of atmosphere for its workers. Parents love having their children work there. They are taught to say “my pleasure” in response to customers who thank them. Chick-fil-A provides tuition help up to $25,000 to help employees attend college. Its Christian ownership translates into treating employees and customers kindly.
Piepenbring hates that the chain uses the word “community.” A plaque by some children’s books declares “our love for this local community.” What’s wrong with a company that tries to do good locally? He admits that Chick-fil-A “donates thousands of pounds of food to New York Common Pantry.”
He even faults Chick-fil-A for closing on Sundays, as if it’s a bad thing. The chain closes to recognize the Sabbath. But there’s nothing strange about that. Plenty of restaurants close over the weekend, when the Monday through Friday workday crowd disappears.
He Even Hates Cows
Incredibly, Piepenbring criticizes the funny Chick-fil-A mascot, the cow. The cute cows are featured in clever misspelled ads that instruct people to “Eat Mor Chikin.” Although they are wildly popular — people clearly like them — Piepenbring describes them in the worst way possible: “It’s worth asking why Americans fell in love with an ad in which one farm animal begs us to kill another in its place.”
The truth is, Piepenbring is an elitist who doesn’t represent the values of most Americans — or even Manhattanites. Chick-fil-A represents a cost-effective, healthy way for people to enjoy good food and happy workers. Piepenbring is so taken by his hatred of those who believe in the sanctity of marriage that his piece is delusional. Next up, we can expect to see the Christian satire site Babylon Bee penning an article on how Chick-fil-A requires its customers to sit through sermons given by workers while eating.
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