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Timothy Davis / Oct. 31, 2014

Don’t Let Personal Views Divide Us

Recently, Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, “came out” as gay. While many people have stated, and assumed, it over the past few years, and he himself has neither confirmed nor denied it. This was the first time he has addressed it. Immediately, the liberal media began to drool at his feet, proclaiming this as the “next big thing” and declaring him a champion of human rights, etc. All this because he confirmed something we all knew. On the other hand, when the CEO of Chick-Fil-A, Dan Cathy, “came out” saying that he didn’t support same-sex marriage, the liberal media essentially declared him the son of satan, and liberals flew out in droves to boycott a restaurant many probably never ate at in the first place. Well, now the CEO of Apple is officially gay. Where are the flocks of conservatives screaming for his resignation? Where are the mobs of protests with their hashtags declaring that everyone should boycott Apple? Well they’re nowhere, because no one cares. Nor should they. No one should be demonized for their personal opinions and lifestyle. This isn’t a discussion about gay marriage, this is about our right to be able to express our beliefs, and not be treated unfairly because of it. I am not taking sides on the issues of gay marriage, I am objecting to freedom of speech becoming a one-way street.

Both of these CEO’s statements reflect personal lifestyle decisions that shouldn’t be taken into account when judging a company. Webster’s dictionary defines personal as: “intended for private use or use by one person.” This doesn’t say “intended for public judgment”, it says private. Being gay or not, or supporting gay marriage (or not), are personal views. We all have personal views on things, and some of them we aren’t particularly eager to share with the whole world. Why should CEOs of companies be treated any differently? If Dan Cathy doesn’t want to support gay marriage, that is his right as an American citizen. If Tim Cook is gay, that’s his personal business. Consumers, and the public in general, shouldn’t care.

Crucifying one person for their views, and worshiping another is just plain wrong. If Dan Cathy had come out and said that he would never hire a gay person and that he wanted them all banished, he would deserve the outcry to follow. However, he never said that. He simply stated his opinion, one shared by some Americans. However, our liberal friends couldn’t seem to understand this, and felt the need to try to make an example out of him. The same people that claim to be all inclusive and accepting of everyone’s personal views sure have a funny way of showing it.

Conservatives aren’t busy shouting from the roof tops that Tim Cook is an evil person whose company should be boycotted. You don’t see them rioting in the streets over this, or staging “straight kiss-ins” in protest. Instead, they collectively shrugged and moved along. They couldn’t care less what Tim Cook’s personal preferences are. Conservative’s respect Tim Cook’s right to be who he is. They don’t care if he decides to make his personal views public. They don’t care if Tim Cook decides to make his personal views public, so long as he doesn’t try to force – get that word “force” – other people to accept his point of view. If he wants to “come out” as gay, that is his right as an American citizen. The 1st Amendment guarantees you the right to have personal views other people may not like, and conservatives take that very seriously. Liberals, conversely, support public expression of private views only when those views line up with what they consider to be correct. The moment a speaker strays from their politically correct line, she or he is labeled as a racist, sexist, homophobic, bigot who needs a lesson. Instead of accepting that not all people will agree on everything, liberals feel the need to police our private thoughts.

This isn’t what our founders had in mind. They imagined a country where everyone was entitled to their own personal opinions. Free and open public debate requires the free and open ability to speak without limitless condemnation. Boycotting a chain of restaurants because one person expressed his personal beliefs is just plain stupid. When successful businessmen such as Dan Cathy or Tim Cook bring private values and lifestyles into a public debate, they enrich our perspectives. Disagreement is basic to American culture, but there’s no need to act like a pouting 5-year-old. We all have different views on just about everything. Trying to get a group of Americans to agree on anything is a difficult task. It’s one of the wonderful things about this country, we all can have our own views. But at the end of the day, we are all Americans. We are one people, one country. Stop demonizing, and celebrating, people for their personal views. Start acting like one nation united.


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