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The ABR’s abstention from voting on Chick-fil-A’s project

was a laudable gesture 23% 51 votes
veered perilously close to interfering with free speech 76% 165 votes
216 total votes

Comments

Independent Discussion Guidelines

All those who think that a DMV employee should be able to deny you a driver's license because you are gay, say Aye. I assume that there will be 27% Aye, based on the voting above.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 8, 2012 at 11:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Exactly JL. Two wrongs don't make a right. Or as Gandhi said , "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind."

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 12:36 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Get the government out of marriage and Chick-Fil-A's views become a moot point and separation of church and state is achieved. A win-win situation. Nobody should have to beg the authorities for a marriage license.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 1:57 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Exactly backward, billclausen; as long as civil benefits are granted to married folks (tax breaks, hospital access and survivor rights, for example) the State needs to be involved.

It's the various and contradictory moral directives of religion who need to leave marriage alone. Keep church out of state business.

Chester_Arthur_Burnett (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 8:54 a.m. (Suggest removal)

@billclausen,

Exactly.

howgreenwasmyvalley (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 10:13 a.m. (Suggest removal)

@Chester_A_Burnett,

I have had this discussion with a Gay Attorney and a Male-Female Transexual, who are both very evolved in the area of 2nd Amendment Rights.

Can you imagine LGBT folks who support the 2nd Amendment.

The Attorney sees it your way but the Transexual sees it My Way.

We have a Constitutional Right to Contract. When my wife and I married, we used a Superior Court Judge to officiate, did not use religious ceremony, in fact we use Apache. We did need to file for a license which I equated to a Partnership agreement filing fee and to be bound by Family Law for this agreement.

Marriage is a Religious Sacrament and should remain so for those who desire such.

Government has a compelling reason to know who is entering/contracting into or Civil Unions but that is all, and a filing fee is reasonable.

Mariage is a Church issue and should remain so.

Now "(tax breaks, hospital access and survivor rights, for example)", can all be accommodated in Civil Unions.

So I say Civil Unions for all and additional Marriage Sacraments for those because of Religious Beliefs feel they need their Church to add an additional Blessing to the Civil Union.

howgreenwasmyvalley (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 11:09 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I've always wondered if the objection to same-sex marriage is really a religious one?

Consider the 3 types of marriage ceremonies I've been to: Christian, Buddhist, secular.

If one were a Christian and objected to same-sex marriage because it violates Christian mores & beliefs, wouldn't a Buddhist marriage be just as objectionable because a 'pagan' deity is involved? And wouldn't the secular marriage be just as distasteful because it didn't involve God at all?

And yet I don't hear cries for banning Buddhist or secular marriages.

From this angle, same-sex marriage seems more like a civil rights issue than a religious one.

If that's the case, why not call all unions a 'marriage' and let participants use whatever religious overtones they want in their ceremonies? That would minimize changes to legal paperwork (i.e. you would not have to add "civil union" to forms that have checkboxes for "single" and "married").

Just thinking out loud ... always a mistake @Indy since commentors tend to respond with quick attacks rather than have discourse :)

EastBeach (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 2:11 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The short version:

If objections to same-sex marriage are going to be based on sacred American Christian values, the logical conclusion is only Christians should be allowed to marry in the U.S.

If not, then the objections must be cultural. In that case, the problem needs to be resolved from a civil rights perspective.

p.s. These aren't necessarily my personal views, they are points for discussion.

EastBeach (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 2:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I heard their chicken is really good.

Riceman (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 4:04 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Their waffle fries were great 20 years ago - last and only time I at in one.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 4:07 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@EastBeach,

I was brought up in the Catholic Church, we kids were taught to memorize the Sacraments, Marriage being one of them.

I think you really rub the Orthodox the wrong way because they see Marriage as a Religious Sacrament from the age of 5 or 6.

I agree with your points and personally don't give a hoot what consenting adults do; the World surely needs more Love.

I am already going to hell from a purely Orthodox point of view but that is my choice.

Let the Fundamentalists keep their Beliefs and just go around it.

Government has its Civil Union Contracts or what ever you wish to call them and Christian Churches have their Marriages, some Christian Churches marry Gays and some don’t.

My God loves all his Creation.

I attended a Lutheran College, a requirement was Religion, and yes many of the students talked openly that non-Christians will rot in Hell or those who do not follow a certain orthodoxy are doomed.

Religious Governments and Utopian Governments have in the history of the world slaughtered ten’s of millions of human beings in their quest for a Purity that I just cannot fathom.

Getting Government out of the Marriage Business seems to me a win win and that is in my opinion a Civil Rights perspective granting the entire Bill of Rights to all Citizens.

howgreenwasmyvalley (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 6:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Again, completely backward. (but 'howgreenwasmyvalley,' we are essentially saying the same thing). I propose we stick with our current laws, and amend them, rather than turning everything over and rebuilding.

Following the best thoughts of our society, this was a great start:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Government has always been in the marriage business (and I'd say irrevocably so today). As long as civic benefits (that is, government benefits) accrue to the married class, keeping religion and particular religious 'values' out of this social necessity benefits all citizens AND all religions. No favorites are picked, no mandated moral conduct, no marginalized classes. or as Virginia's constitution (and many other states) at the time put it "that no particular sect or society ought to be favored or established by law in preference to others."

Now, if you wish to turn everything on its ear and rebrand these terms, have at it, although I don't see the necessity. It is commonly referred to as "marriage," the benefits and sanctions received, but if you want to call it all "Civil Unions," and cede the term of 'marriage' over to religions, no worries.

As long as religion stays out of Guv'mint.

And of course nationally legalize gay marriage.

Chester_Arthur_Burnett (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 7:39 p.m. (Suggest removal)


I heard their chicken is really good.

Riceman (anonymous profile)
August 9, 2012 at 4:04 p.m.

Chicken and rice, yum.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 2:03 a.m. (Suggest removal)

"Exactly backward, billclausen; as long as civil benefits are granted to married folks (tax breaks, hospital access and survivor rights, for example) the State needs to be involved. "

And now for the comeback...

I don't think being married should entitle one to special benefits.
From what I see, the reductions are based on the concept of more people being cost-effective. (Workplace group insurance rates) As such, I believe that any group of people, whether it be neighbors, friends, or even ad hoc groups should be able to qualify for benefits.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 2:21 a.m. (Suggest removal)

HGWMV: Which Lutheran college?...just curious.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 2:24 a.m. (Suggest removal)

We really should not focus on the ABR action or lack of action. It is not like this is going to be a standard action. If the ABR members had voted, and voted no, then there would be a cause for legal action.

This chicken corporate CEO Dan Cathy was not harmed but he is harming people with his personal superstition, political machinations and financial support to tortuous and ineffective Gay therapy organizations. I assume his political activities are exactly what we all hate about our representational system, big money = big votes. So we should focus on the Chic-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy and his passive-aggressive statements, veiled but hateful words, deeds and actions. His support to deny civil rights and the rights of a minority should be what is under scrutiny. Not the ABR.

BTW EastBeach has it right. Marriage is a legal contract in the U.S.A. And "traditional marriage" is questionable catchphrase developed by the divisive right wing. In the U.S.A. marriage is best left up to the individual pairs to figure out, not CEO Dan Cathy. Dan Cathy and council members Frank Hotchkiss and Dale Francisco are not your daddies.

Traditional biblical marriage has several examples and we don't practice many of them here in the U.S.A. including selling off of children and plural marriage. So back my original statement to focus on Dan Cathy; he is not your daddy and can't tell you what to do in well functioning tolerant and secular Democratic Republic. Back off the ABR and go after CEO Dan Cathy.

DonMcDermott (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 7:36 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Don still can't get it through his thick skull that what the ABR did was deny Chic-Fil-A equal treatment under the law without due process.

If Chic-Fil-A is violating the law, take them to court. Sue their @sses off! That's why we have a court system. But to deny them government services just because you don't like their politics is just plain wrong.

What if the state refused to issue you a driver's license because you're Jewish, or Republican or Muslim? What the ABR did amounts to the same thing.

Botany (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 8:15 a.m. (Suggest removal)

You can't say Chic-Fil-A has been denied "due process." No doubt they 1. have a right to appeal/have their review and 2. will be successful. That sounds like process to me. Also, abstaining isn't the same as voting "no." I wish there had been a third option to this poll: "The ABR’s abstention from voting on Chick-fil-A’s project was a laudable gesture but they are not appointed to be making such gestures."

LC (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 8:35 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Just because they have the right to appeal doesn't negate their denial of due process. Justice delayed is justice denied.

What if the state abstained on your driver's license application? Are you saying because they only "abstained" they can make the changes without ABR approval? Where's the difference here?

Botany (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 10:18 a.m. (Suggest removal)

In addition, most if not all Chick Fill-As are franchises- not directly owned by the mother corporation. A major Chick Fill-A franchisee in New Hampshire has directed his restaurants to display posters for upcoming Gay Pride events and will be supplying food.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 10:59 a.m. (Suggest removal)

What Dan Cathy is doing is buying your love with a certain extremist sect of christian fellowship views and goodies to eat. You give him money either directly or through franchised establishments. Whether you agree with his views or not Dan Cathy then buys democracy by funneling money to right-wing and hateful "family" institutions and by supporting groups that lobby against personal freedoms and rights. If you like this type of corporate speech you must love Chinas communist government or maybe Putins Russians government where dissenters are disappeared and friends are protected. That is what corporate sponsored right wing fascism is. Don't be a part of it.

DonMcDermott (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 1:23 p.m. (Suggest removal)

If folks are not in agreement with Chick-Fil-A's philosophy re: gays, they should not go eat there when they open. That's the best way to not sponsor their bigotry. Public permits should not be tide to one point of view or another.

I won't go eat there, and I will inform others of the way this people conduct business. Word of mouth is powerful!

justice101 (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 2:55 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I don't believe my rights depend on denying others their rights.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 3:28 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@billclausen,

The one in T.O.

howgreenwasmyvalley (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 5:18 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@Ken_Volok,

"I don't believe my rights depend on denying others their rights."

Exactly, Every Right has an unsavory side that we have to live with, especially the 1st Amendment.

howgreenwasmyvalley (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 5:21 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The "unsavory" side is that some people and pseudonyms are essentially holding a minority group down while Dan Cathy and friends bully and deny a minority their rights to pursue happiness. Everyone knows that COO Dan Cathy can express his opinion but opinions don't trump human and civil rights. Again if you think differently then go back to being barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen or picking cotton in the fields.

The reasoning and logic behind each individual abstention is not known but it makes sense that if you do not feel that you can provide an impartial vote then you should abstain. That is what puts the City in jeopardy. I doubt anyone board member took the abstention lightly and had a vote occurred anyone on any side of this debate could have contested with charges of partiality. Chic-Fil-A was not harmed and the permit was granted by staff, independent of the ABR. Now that should sound odd. I guess staff just made the ABR obsolete.

But again the bigger issue is the bigoted actions of COO Dan Cathy. Any council member making assumptions and calling for resignations is an autocrat and has no place in a representative Democratic Republic elected office.

DonMcDermott (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 6:33 p.m. (Suggest removal)

So Don, If someone is allegedly denying people their rights, should they be tried in a court of law or by the court of public opinion?

Botany (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 8:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Don: Let's take this in a different direction. Is granting Dan Cathey a business license to sell food going to hurt gays?

The action of denying a marriage license combined with only being able to obtain rights/benifits if you are married is clearly anti-gay as long as gays are not allowed to marry. There are two different issues here.

If the Indy poll is accurate (which is to say that hopefully people aren't voting multiple times with different screen names) than clearly the sympathies are with Cathey. What is ironic, is that from what I can see, most people in Santa Barbara as well as the bloggers in our corner of cyberspace are gay-friendly thus my point is that it is likely not an issue of homophobia (with regard to the poll results) but the almost inevitable backlash at the blatant political correctness and the "we'll-show-him" attitude.

Denying him his right to run a business only is adding fuel to the fire. Get the government out of marriage, and allow any group of people the right to form their own entity per the right of applying for group benefits.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
August 10, 2012 at 9:26 p.m. (Suggest removal)

No, Don, the bigger issue is not "the bigoted actions of Dan Cathy". The bigger issue is a Board members appointed by an elected government using their personal political views in violation of the job they agreed to do and using their government position to bully an individual. A certain German group was extremely good at that in the 1930's and 40's. And, lest you make one of your infamous leaps of illogic - no I do not support Dan Cathy's views. I do however support his inalienable right to express them, as does almost everyone herein except you, apparently.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 11, 2012 at 8:44 a.m. (Suggest removal)

@JohnLocke: " A certain German group was extremely good at that in the 1930's and 40's."

I am unfamiliar with German groups of the 1930's and 1940's. Was it Kraftwerk?

Oh, the Nazis. Yes, the ABR is clearly leading Santa Barbara to a state of National Socialism and institutional genocide. You know, because they were emotionally conflicted about the horribly homophobic views of the CEO a chicken joint. OMG THAT'S JUST LIKE THE NAZIS!

I'm curious, John. Can even walk 5 steps without falling down a slippery slope?

EatTheRich (anonymous profile)
August 11, 2012 at 1:05 p.m. (Suggest removal)

EatTheRich: You say that *I'm" cruel to subject you to that George Harrison video yet you bring up that bizarre technogroup from the mid-70's. That's hitting below the belt.

billclausen (anonymous profile)
August 11, 2012 at 4:15 p.m. (Suggest removal)

May I suggest "Hamburger Lady" by Throbbing Gristle as the theme for this thread?

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 11, 2012 at 4:42 p.m. (Suggest removal)

The point, EatTheRich, is that government suppression of free speech is a basic characteristic of facism, as is punishing those with whom a miscreant has contact.

This whole issue is about free speech, which everyone but you and one or two others fail to understand. Speaking of slippery slopes, do you really not understand that the ABR action is exactly that?

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 12, 2012 at 2:59 p.m. (Suggest removal)

@JohnLocke: "The point, EatTheRich, is that government suppression of free speech is a basic characteristic of facism, as is punishing those with whom a miscreant has contact."

Well, another basic characteristic of fascism is that those who contradict the views of the state are imprisoned, tortured, or executed. Rarely, if ever, did fascism only result in the delayed opening of a crappy chicken joint. Oh, and the Nazis also persecuted homosexuals, so think on that while you are proving Godwin's Law with every post.

@JohnLocke: "This whole issue is about free speech, which everyone but you and one or two others fail to understand. Speaking of slippery slopes, do you really not understand that the ABR action is exactly that?"

I get that the ABR violated your "Business is God" mantra. And sure, the ABR overstepped their bounds - the worst part of it being is that if there are architectural issues with the proposed space then the ABR will have huge problem convincing people that any legitimate denial is just that.

But that's basically it. This isn't another one of you grand conspiracies. The ABR should revisit the issue, approve it on it's architectural merits, and let the few dozen of you who love crappy chain restaurants go stuff your faces with slop. The rest of us with class and taste will eat elsewhere.

EatTheRich (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 4:23 a.m. (Suggest removal)

O.K. here's what we know so far;

Chic-fil-a COO Dan Cathy has recently exercised his right to free speech and is reported to have said amongst other things that "we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation" with respect to gay marriage. He also has exercised what some consider "speech" by funding ineffective and harmful de-gaying and narrow lobbying organizations.

The effect of the Dan Cathy demagoguery or speech has made it a concern for at least some members of the ABR as to their objectively in reviewing the applicants design so they abstained.

Council member Hotchkiss wants to force the ABR members to be objective. And even Mayor to some degree has insisted that the ABR members come to the meetings and participate even when they suspect that they cannot review the project objectively. Essentially to rubber-stamp a project that city staff has miraculously approved anyway.

So what will be the outcome of this distraction in an already superficial environmental review process on the visuals of landscaping. Will there be traffic, noise and air pollution problems. Parking, lighting, creek runoff issues.

I mention the above because while the right wing psyche takes over on phobic issues we forget about the important issues. I suspect there will be negative consequences just like there are consequences to demagoguery or mean and hateful 'free speech.' This 'distraction' will likely have negative consequences. Let us just hope that with the distraction we won't end up with a traffic jam (seriously) or another helipad degrading yet another neighborhood (figuratively.) Or that the local body politic doesn't move further to the right (frighteningly.)

DonMcDermott (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 6:30 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Yes, God forbid we move right. Lets keep going left because that has worked, right Don??

What does Right or Left have to do with LANDSCAPING????

Some of you are idiots... You lefties want "Political/Religious views" out of the bedroom in one hand then want the full power of the government taking your rights away from running a business in the other. What the hell is the difference?

It is really simple Don, you don't like ones point of view, don't shop there. Case closed move on to your next tirade....

Priceless (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 7:09 a.m. (Suggest removal)

@EatTheRich: once again you are confused and your sarcasm is exceeded only by your lack of ability to understand simple English. My view on this has nothing to do with whether or not I am a business person, like Chick-Fil-A's food, am a Dem or a Rep (neither), nor any other of your irrelevant leaps of illogic. Where in the world did you come up with a "business is God" mantra? You on hallucinogens again?

It's about free speech, nothing more, nothing less.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 8:29 a.m. (Suggest removal)

@JohnLocke: "It's about free speech, nothing more, nothing less."

It's about a bit more than that, but, given that I know where this road leads, I'll just consider it a win that I got you to make a post in which you do not invoke a reference to the 3rd Reich.

EatTheRich (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 10:20 a.m. (Suggest removal)

I much preferred the first two Reichs.

djfranchise (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 10:39 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Third Reich N' Roll

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 11:38 a.m. (Suggest removal)

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 11:39 a.m. (Suggest removal)

EatTheReich

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 13, 2012 at 6:45 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Those are our only two options? What's laughable to me is that some people made this about free speech as if saying what you want doesn't ever come without consequences. I feel like I'm listening to a bunch of snotty 4th graders talking back to their teacher, "America's a free country; I can say what I want."

Num1UofAn (anonymous profile)
August 14, 2012 at 8:37 a.m. (Suggest removal)

One thing that is clear: all of the ABR that did this to Chick-fil-A voted for Obama in 2008 when he clearly stated that marriage should be only between a man and woman. Wow. Massive hypocrisy.

Another thing that is clear: 9 out of 10 of the people who supported the ABR and who are posting here (above) also voted for Obama in 2008.

willy88 (anonymous profile)
August 14, 2012 at 1:43 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I voted for Obama in 08 and do not condone the actions of some of the ABR members as well intentioned as they may or may not be. How does that skew the statistics?
The focus of this issue is due process and equal rights for ALL. The lemonade from this lemon is the overwhelming support for marriage equality shown by both sides of this controversy. Once you embrace that, it might be easier for many of you to see that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.

Ken_Volok (anonymous profile)
August 14, 2012 at 2:03 p.m. (Suggest removal)

I also voted for Obama in 08 and agree with Ken.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
August 15, 2012 at 9:52 a.m. (Suggest removal)

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