“Closed on Sunday, you’re my Chick-fil-A / Closed on Sunday, you my Chick-fil-A,” Kanye West raps at the start of “Closed On Sunday,” a song from his long-delayed, eagerly-anticipated and slightly disappointing Jesus Is King record. Ye dropped the album on Oct. 25, and while his collaboration with Nicki Minaj didn’t make the final cut, his rumored lyric about Chick-fil-A made it. The song’s opening lines referenced the fast-food chain’s policy of closing on Sunday for religious regions. However, with Chick-fil-A’s history of supporting anti-LGBT efforts, some fans were annoyed by Kanye’s lyrics.
One irate fan shared a clip of Stephen A Smith asking, “Y’all don’t have a problem with this? You just gonna let this slide?” “‘Closed On Sunday’ alone should cause a huge ruckus from the LGBTQ+ community. That chorus mannn….” another tweeted. To be fair, most of the backlash against “Closed On Sunday” was about the song’s seemingly poor production, rudimentary lyrics, and how it came off less like a song and more like a jingle. Still, some people raised an eyebrow at Kanye seemingly aligning himself with Chick-fil-A, and this minor criticism caused the right-win Twittersphere (specifically, commentator and Kanye fan Candace Owens) to take up arms. That backlash was bigger than the backlash against Kanye. How funny.
LGBTQ niggas listening to “Closed on Sunday” pic.twitter.com/5qm1a7YT7v
— Dion (@StaggeringIG) October 25, 2019
"Closed On Sunday" alone should cause a huge ruckus from the LGBTQ+ community.
That chorus mannn……..#JESUSISKING
— Kahlief “Low Light Level” Adams (@Kahjahkins) October 25, 2019
While the Chick-Fil-A line is going to be analyzed until the end of time (or, at least until people get bored), the other part of that verse deserves attention. “Watch out for vipers, don’t let them indoctrinate” possibly raises a red-flag since it’s similar to languaged used by people concerned over public schools “indoctrinating” children with the “Gay Agenda.” That may be a stretch, since Kanye himself did not make any explicit anti-LGBT statements on this song.
“Hold the selfies / put the ‘gram away” might be Kanye denouncing modern vanity. Considering his recent clashes with Kim Kardashian over her sexy clothing, it’s hard not to see the line throwing a little shade to his wife’s activities. During the Oct. 13 episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, a pious Kanye told Kim that, “You are my wife, and it affects me when pictures are too sexy.” Kim, understandably, clapped back at him, telling him that she’s not on the same “journey” as him.
For those who are wondering: Yes, every Chick-Fil-A is closed because of Christianity. “Closing our business on Sunday, the Lord’s Day, is our way of honoring God and showing our loyalty to Him,” Chick-fil-A’s founder, Truett Cathy, wrote in his book Eat Mor Chikin: Inspire More People, according to Business Insider. My brother Ben and I closed our first restaurant on the first Sunday after we opened in 1946, and my children have committed to closing our restaurants on Sundays long after I’m gone.”
This should come to no surprise to anyone who survived the 2012 Chick-Fil-A same-sex marriage controversy. Chick-fil-A, the restaurant, is not anti-LGBT. But, the people have the top have made some anti-LBGT comments. In 2012, CEO Dan Cathy, son of the company’s founder, voiced opposition to same-sex marriage (saying he believed in the “biblical definition of the family unit”) according to Vox. There were also reports that the organization’s charitable arm, the WinShape Foundation, had donated money to anti-LGBT efforts: $1.1 million to the Marriage & family Foundations; $480k to Fellowship of Christian Athletes, which deems LGBTQ people as living “impure lifestyle[s]”; and $1k to Exodus International, a group that promotes anti-gay conversion.
There were protests and boycotts. A counter-boycott, led by former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, actually boosted sales (and, to be fair, people on both sides of the argument continued to eat at the restaurant for the simple fact that they like the food.) Chick-Fil-A eventually stopped donating to most of those anti-LGBT organizations, same-sex marriage finally was made legal, and everyone had waffle fries (except on Sunday.)