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Just another chain

Michael Tomlin

Michael Tomlin

I was online actually reading about Arizona and its immigration laws when Five Guys Burgers and Fries took a hit.

Reading blog posts is a lot like fishing in the ocean. You never know what you might catch. The look from the surface and your bait mean nothing to what happens below – much like an original blog title.

It may be a stretch, but I think I understand that if you oppose Arizona requiring residents to meet and follow federal laws, and to keep employment opportunities for citizens and legal residents first, then you also don’t like franchises and chains.

The column was exploring whether Idaho would band as brothers and be a united state with those seeking to enforce federal law in their boundaries along with a few of their own laws – laws no different than what hunters follow requiring game in their possession to be legally “tagged” or face poaching charges. Workers without papers, while people of dignity, are in the legal sense untagged elk in the truck. Someone should go to jail. Worse yet when they are non-workers and truly poach off our porches of taxed dollars.

But as states unite, the anti-Five Guys posters would claim they too are just chains, and should be shunned, hence the boycott-Arizona crowd. Franchises? Bad. Chains? Bad. Boycott them all. It is really hard for me to understand as it seems like the American dream. Start a little store in Bentonville, Ark., and grow it. Joe Albertson did it with groceries in Boise, Idaho.

When I moved to Boise I soon learned of Louie’s, and it became my favorite eatery. Louie’s downtown, Louie’s in Ketchum, Louie’s anywhere. Then they opened in Meridian, mismanaged their flagship location getting run off the block by a (oops!) chain, already closed in Ketchum, and I swear they have changed recipes in Meridian. They could have been a real chain, but others became so. It is how it works, and it is good – though I miss Louie’s.

But back to Five Guys. We like them a lot. We also like Fuddruckers, and it is closer to Costco and Edwards Megaplex – well, that about defines us with the Co-op crowd. Sorry, our colors are shown. And Fuds makes great malts. I know that Moon’s does, also. I love them, too, but why and for what reason would we ever be at Moon’s?

The Arizona immigration story was not about Five Guys. It was just a poster making a tie to eating there and noticing the bags of Idaho potatoes staged everywhere, and the next poster began the anti-chain comments. It could have just as easily gone to charter schools or Whole Foods – yes, another chain.

I have friends who only watch movies at the Flicks and the Egyptian. It keeps them in the unchained part of town, and while they miss a lot they pick them up on Netflix … and watch them, I am guessing, on a hand-built TV/DVD unit-crafted by a local artisan. Maybe no-chainers will become the next Tea Party political group. Uh-oh – political parties … just another chain.

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