The admin auditorium filled with students and faculty to discuss concerns with a vendor that may soon have a home in the University Center on Monday, September 24th at 5pm. For the past year, Chick-Fil-A has been the prospective replacement of Jazzmans and most students strongly anticipated its arrival. As Chick-Fil-A’s grand opening draws near, some people began to compare the vendor’s strong Christian values with those of Xavier University of Louisiana and called for a hearing.
The controversial history of Chick-Fil-A stems from the president and CEO of the company, Dan T. Cathy. In 2012, Cathy publicly denounced same sex marriages because he believed they didn’t match the company’s “Christian values.” The LGBTQ+ community and its allies responded with uproar and outrage. Since then, Chick-fil-A has donated millions of dollars to anti-LGBTQ+ organizations, and they strongly uphold those “Christian values” within their chains.
A student spoke out out in favor of the installment and many nodded
heads in agreement. Photo by Azhae’la Hanson
“We need to focus on the benefits of the majority population.”– Anthony J. Freeman, SGA President
The majority of the student crowd, including elected members of the campus SGA, spoke out in favor of the installment. It was argued that the decision to open Chick-Fil-A on campus was made last year, so it is too late to express discomfort. Students claim the food has nothing to do with the company’s values and suggest the people who disagree shouldn’t eat there when it’s built. The argument that XULA’s campus has more to gain than to
lose with this potential vendor was also presented. An important gain to consider: Theoretically, because the public has access to the vendor, profitable revenue will benefit the university.
A faculty member who is a part of the LGBTQ+ community explained
how the decision will impact him and reflect campus values. Photo by
“We need to pay attention to minorities on campus because in the real world, we all are the minorities.”-Anonymous Commenter, XULA student
Many Xavierites feel that allowing Chick-Fil-A on XULA’s campus contradicts the school’s identity. At Monday night’s event, University President C. Reynold Verret repeatedly reminded students that the Xavier community is non-discriminatory and accepts the diversity of religion, race, sexual orientation, and gender preference with open arms. Many faculty members said that allowing Chick-Fil-A on campus is a bad reflection on the XULA image; they are worried that outsiders may associate the vendor’s discriminatory views with the school’s. There was also a comment that raised questions of campus safety. Students were concerned that if Chick-Fil-A-is open to the public, it will allow potentially dangerous outsiders into campus facilities.
The hearing came to a close after almost two hours. President Varett declared that the decision to open Chick-Fil-A on campus has not yet been decided. Students and staff should expect an answer within the next few weeks.