O'Laughlin is a member of a 4-person family consisting of 2 adult women and 2 male children, and they're on a road trip where they want to stop at the restaurant with a play area, and it happens to be a Chick-fil-A, which she put on her "list of places to avoid" when its CEO "went on record indicating his support for only families that meet the 'biblical definition of the family unit.'"
But O'Laughlin has a moderate approach to using her spending power to nudge businesses. She wanted to favor J.C. Penney, for using Ellen DeGeneres and "families like ours" in their advertising, but there was a pothole in the parking lot, so she went somewhere else, and she'd like to reward Starbucks, but it's overpriced, so she snubs it.
Noting that life is "complicated" and you've got to see the "nuance" and be "practical," she goes to the Chick-fil-A, buys the food, but hates the atmosphere — not because it's anti-gay, but it's noisy and chaotic (because of the very play area that made her overcome her political aversion to the place).
"Let's get out of here." I say to my boys.... Standing outside, my wife and I look around with road-trip decision paralysis. A kind Chick-fil-A employee comes toward us with four trays. "Y'all could sit on these if you'd like," she says. We smile, thank her, and set up a picnic on the grassy island between the parking lots of Chick-fil-A and Burger King. We're having it our way.So what's the point? It seems to me that the point is that life is complicated, and we make individual choices to suit our own needs and tastes, some of which include politics and morality, and part of what we get to choose is how hardcore we want to be about where we go and what we buy. Also, the lower-down employees of a company are individuals with their own lives, making their own choices, just like you, and it's good for everyone to remember that.
This not the point of the article, but just something I'd like to add: Picnicking at ground level in a parking lot is not a good idea. Not only is it unfair to the business that has provided tables and chairs and wants to project an image of tidiness, but it's not a clean place to eat. Grassy does not equal clean. Grass doesn't magically repel the filth from the cars, and it attracts dog poop, human sputum, and dog and human pee.