Yesterday it was announced that Chick-fil-A would be coming to the Buffalo Niagara International Airport, located in Cheektowaga, N.Y. Chick-fil-A has only recently started opening locations in Western New York, where I live, and the prospect of them coming to BNIA, an airport I have flown out of many times, was a brilliant move. Many restaurants in the food court have been obviously underwhelming travelers. Chick-fil-A, with their popularity and growth, would be a perfect addition to the airport.
Soon after the announcement was made, Assemblyman Sean Ryan announced his disappointment via a statement.
— Assemblyman Sean Ryan (@SeanMRyan149) March 29, 2019
Likely due in part to his intervention, less than a day after the announcement, the decision to bring Chick-fil-A to the airport was reversed by the NFTA.
Assemblyman Ryan released the following statement following the NFTA’s reversal:
“Earlier today I spoke with the vendor of the Buffalo Airport food court project, and they informed me they will not be opening a Chick-fil-A as a part of their airport project. A publicly financed facility like the Buffalo Niagara International Airport is not the appropriate venue for a Chick-fil-A restaurant. I applaud the decision that has been made to remove Chick-fil-A from the plans for this project.
We hope in the future the NFTA will make every effort to contract with businesses that adhere to anti-discriminatory policies, and we’re confident another vendor who better represents the values of the Western New York community will replace Chick-fil-A as a part of this project in the very near future.”
Chick-fil-A doesn’t represent the values of Western New York? Last fall, a standalone Chick-fil-A opened up in Cheektowaga (a five-minute drive away from the airport) and people were getting in line for the grand opening a day early. I know people who went there on the day of the grand opening, and the lines were so long it was about a three-hour wait. I have been to this location twice myself and had to wait in the drive-thru about a half an hour to order. This location is next to a McDonald’s, too. Obviously, Western New Yorkers like Chick-fil-A and either support their values or don’t care enough to let that get in the way of getting a tasty chicken sandwich.
This is the second Chick-fil-A this month that has been prevented from going up in an airport over the company’s traditional values. The San Antonio City Council effectively banned Chick-fil-A from opening up in in the city’s airport for seven years. The First Liberty Institute is calling for an investigation into the “city’s religious discrimination.” I hope they do the same for Buffalo. We must stop this religious discrimination now before it gets out of hand.
Update 7:16 pm EDT:
I went to Chick-Fil-A tonight to see how busy it was:
— Matt Margolis 🇺🇸 (@mattmargolis) March 29, 2019
Matt Margolis is the author of The Scandalous Presidency of Barack Obama and the bestselling The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. His new book, Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy, will be published in 2019. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis