For several reasons I’ve been uncommonly quiet the past few weeks about events going on around the country as well as in the Lone Star State. While it is true that we have thousands of readers who visit United each month, it is also true that we know many of our readers personally, and we know that many of you disagree strongly on your politics and your social issues…which quite often lately seem to be one and the same.
It is impossible, however, to remain quiet on the events of this past week when Texans spoke…very, very loudly indeed.
First of all, it was a bad year to be an incumbent in Texas, good or bad. As I have been predicting for a while now, the mood of the country seems to be to rid the U.S. of its professional politicians, and Texas took a stab at that very thing with the biggest upset being Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst falling to Ted Cruz in his bid for the U.S. Senate. Of course, this doesn’t take Mr. Dewhurst out of the political arena; it just means that he now goes back to work doing the job he was elected to do in the first place.
Closer to home, State Representative Sid Miller fell to J.D. Sheffield of Gatesville. Miller has served District 59 since 2001.
Then…less than twenty-four hours after the ballot boxes closed, thousands of Texans across the state were lined up (sometimes several times around) at their local, or not so local, Chick-Fil-A, showing their support for the First Amendment, and Dan Cathy’s right to stand upon it.
You will remember that Cathy, son of Chick-Fil-A founder Truett Cathy, was asked about his thoughts on marriage in a recent interview (with a Baptist entity). Cathy answered that he believed marriage to be an institution between one man and one woman, setting off a fire storm across the country.
In an amazing show of support, Texans as well as Americans across the country flooded Chick-Fil-A restaurants on August 1 in a manner that totally amazed me. Wanting to see just how large the turnout really was, I toured several of the restaurants and found cars wrapped around blocks at each location, people lined out the doors in 110 degree Texas heat, and smiles on every face.
It was nothing to stand and wait for as much as an hour and a half, and yet people stood and waited, and when the restaurants ran out of food, they cheerfully bought gift cards, and I do mean cheerfully.
I must admit that I was amazed, maybe astounded would be a better word. I also did not get the feeling that here in Texas we were watching what many refer to as a religious issue. For most, it was purely a case of standing on the First Amendment, and stand, and stand, and stand they did, with never a complaint.
Regardless of how you feel about Cathy or whether you plan to eat with him again, you have to admit that it is nothing short of amazing to see Americans care enough about anything to stand in the broiling sun with a smile on their faces…all to take a stand about something they believe.
And of course, the question that I hear on every corner today is whether or not all of this means anything for the November ballot boxes and, unfortunately, that still remains to be seen, doesn’t it?