In light of its discriminatory stance against the LGBT community, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino says that he does not want Chick-fil-A, a business “that discriminates against a population,” in his city, reports the Boston Herald.
In a radio appearance on “The Ken Coleman Show,” Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy voiced his personal stance on marriage equality:
“We’re 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 that thinks we have the audacity to redefine what marriage is all about.
“We are very much supportive of the family — the biblical definition of the family unit. We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that … We want to do anything we possibly can to strengthen families. We are very much committed to that.”
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When asked was he anti-gay marriage, Cathy responded “guilty as charged.”
His statements sparked a furious backlash and Mayor Menino quickly spoke out:
“Chick-fil-A doesn’t belong in Boston. You can’t have a business in the city of Boston that discriminates against a population. We’re an open city, we’re a city that’s at the forefront of inclusion,” Menino told the Herald.
“That’s the Freedom Trail. That’s where it all started right here. And we’re not going to have a company, Chick-fil-A or whatever the hell the name is, on our Freedom Trail.”
Chick-fil-A issued the following statement in response to the potential loss of income:
“The Chick-fil-A culture and service tradition in our restaurants is to treat every person with honor, dignity and respect — regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender,” the statement read. “Going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena.”
“Chick-fil-A is a family-owned and family-led company serving the communities in which it operates. From the day Truett Cathy started the company, he began applying biblically-based principles to managing his business. For example, we believe that closing on Sundays, operating debt-free and devoting a percentage of our profits back to our communities are what make us a stronger company and Chick-fil-A family.
“Our mission is simple: to serve great food, provide genuine hospitality and have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.”
Menino is not having it though, saying that “If they need licenses in the city, it will be very difficult — unless they open up their policies.”
More than just Cathy’s personal opinion, is that the company puts its money where it’s mouth is and donates millions to anti-gay organizations around the country.
Huffington Post reports:
According to EqualityMatters.org, the fast food company donated nearly $2 million in 2009 to groups that have anti-gay agendas.
IRS 990 forms show that WinShape, the restaurant chain’s charitable foundation which was founded by Chick-Fil-A’s chairman S. Truett Cathy in 1994, gave to the following groups in 2009:
- Marriage & Family Legacy Fund: $994,199
- Fellowship Of Christian Athletes: $480,000
- National Christian Foundation: $240,000
- Focus On The Family: $12,500
- Eagle Forum: $5,000
- Exodus International: $1,000
- Family Research Council: $1,000
An earlier investigation by Equality Matters found that Chick-Fil-A, which has been voted the third most beloved restaurant chain in the United States, donated more than $1 million to anti-gay groups between 2003 and 2008. The IRS forms from 2009 are the most recent available as public records.
It’s one thing to respect someone’s personal views, but to fund a corporation whose value system does not align with one’s own is a different story entirely.