What Romney Can Learn from Chick-fil-A

Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, especially when it deals with liberals assaulting the first amendment and the conservatives fighting back.

Today, countless Americans went to Chick-fil-A to tell the free speech squashers in liberalville to take a proverbial hike. I rarely go to Chick-fil-A because there isn’t one in my city, but made a special drive with my husband to go for dinner — just to show our appreciation for Chick-fil-A and its employees. The conservative movement on Twitter and other social media outlets brilliantly maneuvered this appreciation day, so much so that media seemed wholly unaware of the barrage of patrons flocking to Chick-fil-A until the lines of cars were personally affecting their mobility.

Many of us on the right have mentioned, and in some cases complained, that Mitt Romney’s campaign doesn’t seem to be able to get its message out or fight back appropriately. I find myself yelling at the television during an ad or an interview, giving Romney instructions on what he should have said or done. While he’s not able to hear me then, there are lessons to be learned from the Chick-fil-A atrocity, and Romney should be able to see them all on his own.

  1. Don’t get stuck on the details. Chick-fil-A’s CEO wasn’t out arguing why he thought gay marriage was wrong, and didn’t sit through a host of television interviews to explain his position. The details and reasoning are irrelevant. You’re not going to win on the details sometimes. Romney seems to get stuck arguing those details of the issues, rather than doing point #2…
  2. Allow others to be part of the controversy. We haven’t seen the CIO of Chick-fil-A out on news shows discussing the CEO’s comments. Instead, individuals like Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum organized their own way to make a statement — today’s appreciation day. All Chick-fil-A was required to do was open its doors and provide employees to place the orders and take the money. In the meantime, the optics of cars in line down the streets (that the government built, of course) outside of Chick-fil-A lets the liberal mayors know that their Constitution-bashing will not stand. We are natural herders, so let us flock to you and be part of the controversy ourselves! Some going today may disagree with the CEO on his marriage stance, but they do not support the heavy hand of government inserting itself into the private sector’s right to do business.
  3. Say what you mean, and mean what you say. Chick-fil-A’s CEO could have sent a press release changing his statement and making it more palatable for the mayors who criticized him. Instead, he stood behind his words, and then others have provided personal witness to his character and integrity. Don’t back peddle – it only makes you look weak.
  4. Your product doesn’t have to be exceptional to earn support. Personally, I like Chick-fil-A, but there are those who don’t who are still driving to Chick-fil-A today just to be part of the movement! Wouldn’t it be amazing if people who didn’t like your product bought it anyway? People are doing that today, just to prove a point. And, wouldn’t it be an accomplishment if voters who didn’t necessarily swoon over Romney were to vote for him on election day? They will, if he gives them a compelling reason, especially against our current President. All the customers at the appreciation day today went to Chick-fil-A because of a catalyst that pushed them over the edge. Romney needs to find his catalyst.
  5. Ignore the lamestream media. The lamestream media didn’t even pick up on the Chick-fil-A story until early afternoon, and some weren’t covering it until even later. But, social media was buzzing! Romney seems to often care too much about the lamestream media’s portrayal of him rather than getting the word out on his own and in a unique way. The media isn’t going to support Romney either way, so he should accept this, embrace this and utilize the other resources available to a campaign with piles of cash.

With some attention paid to creating raving fans who work on your behalf, properly handling the media and standing your ground when you make a statement, Romney can win the support of the “Chick-fil-A voters” who are just waiting for a cause to trumpet. Are you listening, Mitt?

Comments

  1. How is it that, as a conservative, you don’t mind the “heavy hand of government” inserting itself into the private sector business yet you have no problem with that heavy hand deciding who gets the benefits and privileges of marriage and who does not? If you wanted limited, constitutional government then you can’t ask the government to define for you what group of people can obtain the privileges of marriage and who cannot. By allowing only heterosexual couples obtain those benefits, you are enabling the government to do exactly that. So what do you really want, the government to stay out of such matters or the government to take an active role in supporting your religious views? You can’t have it both ways. Allowing same sex marriage keeps the government out of that decision and allows all people to obtaint he benefits of marriage without prejudice or religion. Why doesn’t it bother you that the “heavy hand of government” is not applying the law equally to all, based on religious rather than Consitutional principles? Sara, I am a conservative and I see this issue as a Constitutional one. My argument cannot be dismissed because I am a “crazy liberal”, because I am not. I understand marriage can be a religious issue, but when that marriage enables a couple to obtain privileges such as tax benefits and immigration status it becomes more than a religious issue. It becomes a Constitutional issue. I am a proud conservative, a city councilwoman, a Catholic, a registered Republican, and I too am not afraid to combat arguments that grow government.

    • Lisa, I had just this conversation with someone at lunch today. I understand your position. And no, you aren’t a crazy liberal! You’re coming at this from a libertarian point of view, if you want to classify it in some way.

      “Marriage” as an institution is rooted in the Bible and in religious beliefs. Marriage was meant to be between a man and woman, and in my opinion, should remain as such. Changing the definition of a word to suit modern day situations can take us down a slippery slope — just like we don’t want people reinterpreting the Constitution to fit their current desires. The government is involved in marriage for the legal impact of what it means to be married. However, that doesn’t change the purpose or meaning of marriage as a long-standing religious term and institution.

      Having grown up in theatre, I have had gay and lesbian friends and colleagues. As a Christian and Catholic, I believe that we should love everyone — not give others special rights, such as the right to redefine marriage, but I do believe we should love others. Personally, I am not against civil unions just for that purpose. A gay person who is in the hospital should be allowed to have their partner visit them, for example, rather than their being turned away for not being family. Civil unions serve the purpose that gay men and lesbian women seek to achieve, as I understand it — equality under the law for their relationship with their life partner — without altering the definition of a word that comes from a religious foundation. The government should not have the right to redefine a word that is steeped in religious tradition.

      Some compare gay marriage to civil rights for African-Americans and for women. The two are nothing alike. I do not want for any gay or lesbian person to be treated as a second class citizen, owned as property, denied the right to vote, or experience any of the other hardships that African-Americans and/or women had to suffer through. Simply, I believe that gay and lesbian couples should have equal rights as I do — equal rights to have the tax benefits, immigration status, inheritance, hospital visitation, etc. They can achieve all of those things through a civil union.

      Finally, this situation with Chick-fil-A isn’t about gay marriage. Frankly, that has nothing to do with it. When Cathy stated his religious beliefs and at least three mayors stated that would prevent the company from receiving licenses to do business in those cities, this became about free enterprise and freedom of speech. THAT is what is important here, and why so many flocked to Chick-fil-A yesterday to stand up for them. The Obama administration and its cronies cannot use the heavy hand of government to nudge people in to doing what they want, especially when religious and speech freedoms are in play. They’re doing it to the Catholic Church and other religious institutions, and now they’re fining/taxing us if we don’t purchase a particular product (healthcare). People are tired of the government trying to push us around! This is supposed to be government by the people and for the people, not the people working for the government.

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