Emmett Dulaney: Let's agree to disagree

Tue, 2012-08-14 11:42 -- univcomm
August 14, 2012

Think of the one topic that you are most passionate about. Now, know for certain that whatever your position is, mine is the exact opposite. I not only think they should put an incinerator in your backyard — with all the work remotely done by exploited Chinese laborers (children, at that) — but I also think they should build a failing public school right over it. In order to make all of this possible, they should raise your taxes and charge more for gasoline.

I am exaggerating, of course, but so doing seems to be the best way to increase commerce today. Whatever is said about an issue — either in politics or business — gets blown out of proportion to the point where sides are drawn and votes then cast with dollars. From a purely marketing viewpoint, this is brilliant.

As the latest example, Chik-fil-A’s across the country were full beyond capacity at the beginning of the month as customers weighed in on whether or not to support the president (Dan Cathy) after he said the company backed “the biblical definition of a family.” Talk about being caught off-guard! Chik-fil-A being pro traditional family — who would have thought! Next thing you know, it will leak out that Christian bookstores give money to inner city ministries and we will have to feign shock over that. I don’t know if I am more cynical than others, but somehow the controversy part of it eluded me completely.

I did not eat at Chik-fil-A on Aug. 1 — the day for supporting freedom of speech and good old family values. I did not eat at Chik-fil-A on Aug. 3 — the day protesters organized a same-sex “kiss-in” to show how they disagree with Cathy. My reason for not eating there either day had nothing to do with supporting one side over the other, it had to do with my not being particularly hungry for a chicken sandwich and lemonade on either of those days. Mistakenly, I thought that Chik-fil-A was a fast-food chain and I failed to realize that they are the bellwether for societal values.

Back to the discussion on the one issue you are most passionate about. It just so happens that my latest book, “CompTIA A+ Complete Study Guide: Exams 220-801 and 220-802,” is coming out in early October. I assure you that this book has as much to do with your passionate topic as waffle fries have to do with same-sex marriage. If you don’t think that I should have the right to disagree with your position, then wait until Friday before you pre-order a copy on Amazon. On the other hand, if you appreciate the fact that we have such differences of opinion and they can be voiced, then place an order on this coming Wednesday. And don’t be afraid to speak up and tell others about your outrage and the need to vote with your purchases. That will teach me a lesson.

Anderson University is a private Christian university of 2,600 undergraduate and graduate students in central Indiana. Anderson University continues to be recognized as one of America's top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and Forbes. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, Anderson University offers more than 65 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music, nursing, and theology. The Falls School of Business is one of Anderson University’s largest academic departments offering eight undergraduate majors as well as MBA and DBA programs. The school is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) and is a member of the Christian Business Faculty Association (CBFA).

Columns from Anderson University’s Falls School of Business are published Tuesdays in The Herald Bulletin. Tuesday’s columnist is Emmett Dulaney, who teaches marketing and entrepreneurship.