• By Bill O'Reilly

    Chick-Fil-A is a fast food chain headed up by a religious man named Dan Cathy. He believes that marriage should be exclusively between a man and a woman and has stated that publicly.

    (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

    DAN CATHY, PRESIDENT, CHICK-FIL-A: I think we are inviting God's judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say we know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage. And I pray God's mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we would have the audacity to try to redefine what marriage is all about.

    (END VIDEO CLIP)

    O'REILLY: Well, in response, a culture battle has broken out. The Mayors of Boston, Chicago and San Francisco are saying they don't want Chick-Fil-A restaurants in their cities. They can't stop them, but the rhetoric makes it difficult for a public business to operate in safety.

    In fact, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee said on Twitter, quote; "Closest Chick-Fil-A is 40 miles away and I strongly recommend they not try to come any closer".

    Well, that sounds like a threat, does it not?

    Former Arkansas Governor and current Fox News host Mike Huckabee is leading a campaign to have folks buy stuff at the restaurants to counter the anti-Chick-Fil-A movement. Obviously, the issue of gay marriage continues to divide Americans.

    And now the Democratic Party has made it part of their convention platform, calling for legalized gay marriage nationwide. The Democrats will convene in Charlotte, North Carolina, a state that voted down gay marriage in May.

    But no matter how you feel about the issue, respect should be brought to the debate. Mr. Cathy is entitled to his opinion and his company is entitled to donate money to promote keeping traditional marriage as the legal standard. Mayors Menino, Emanuel and Lee are also entitled to state their pro-gay marriage opinions but they do the country a disservice by trying to harm Mr. Cathy's business. Organized economic retaliation is not what America is all about.

    If you don't like Dan Cathy, don't buy his product. "Talking Points" is fine with that. But to pressure others to think like you is wrong. The free marketplace should be just that; both products and ideas should be openly displayed without threats of any kind. But today the haters and exploiters have center stage and they are doing damage to the nation.

    Nobody forces anybody to buy chicken. The company wants to sell chicken in Boston or Chicago or San Francisco, no pinheaded politician should be trying to hurt that business because they disagree with the politics of management.

    Marriage is not a civil right. And until the Supreme Court rules that it is, which is doubtful, no bias charge is valid. People of good conscience stand on both sides of the issue and their opinions should be respected.

    And that's "The Memo."

    You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com.