SPEAK OUT: Chick-Fil-A Sees Backlash to Anti-Gay Marriage Stance

The company has received major backlash after its president made anti-gay marriage remarks in several interviews.

Everyone’s favorite childhood puppets are taking a stand for gay marriage. 

The Jim Henson Company – creator of the Muppets -- announced recently that it would no longer do business with Chick-Fil-A following recent anti-gay marriage comments made by the popular chicken company’s president, Dan Cathy. 

“The Jim Henson Company has celebrated and embraced diversity and inclusiveness for over fifty years and we have notified Chick-Fil-A that we do not wish to partner with them on any future endeavors,” the organization, whose namesake grew up in University Park and attended University of Maryland, wrote on its Facebook page.

“Lisa Henson, our CEO is personally a strong supporter of gay marriage and has directed us to donate the payment we received from Chick-Fil-A to GLAAD,” the post concludes. 

Their announcement came after Cathy made some very public remarks – both in print and on the radio – affirming his stance on the subject.

"We are very much supportive of the family -- the biblical definition of the family unit,” Cathy said in an interview with the Baptist Press last week. “We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that.”

In addition, The Washington Post reported that in a recent interview on the Ken Coleman radio show, Cathy said that “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.”

Those comments, among others, have prompted a wave of backlash from various organizations and people – including the mayor of Boston, Thomas Menino, who told the Boston Herald he would keep Chick-Fil-A out of the city.

“If they need licenses in the city, it will be very difficult — unless they open up their policies,”  Menino said.

Chick-Fil-A has 45 locations throughout Maryland, including stores in Westminster, Columbia, Laurel and Largo.

Now, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee has announced his support for the restaurant franchise. On Sunday, he created an event on Facebook encouraging people to show their support and appreciation for Chick-Fil-A.

"The goal is simple: Let's affirm a business that operates on Christian principles and whose executives are willing to take a stand for the Godly values we espouse by simply showing up and eating at Chick-Fil-A on Wednesday, August 1," he wrote on the event page, which currently has over 95,000 attending. 

Will you show up next Wednesday to support Huckabee's campaign? Do you think Cathy should have to rethink his policies? Tell us in our poll and in the comments. 


Other Patch articles on this topic:  

Native July 24, 2012 at 06:11 PM
So lets see here...there haven't been any instances of anyone being refused service, no discrimination of any kind in any of the restaurants, the food is excellent, & they close on Sundays for worship. So what is the problem to the all inclusive, all tolerant, inclusive liberals? Oh, someone's stance & opinion isn't in agreement with them? Then the non-conformist should be ridden out of town on a rail! What a bunch of horse$*#&!!! So the man's position doesn't agree with the gays, who cares!! Let 'em eat somewhere else. This exact issue is why the gays have problems being accepting, it's THEIR INTOLERANCE, not anyone elses!!!!!
vanyel1967 July 24, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Really? So letting this man, who is the head of this company, continue to say that HIS COMPANY does not support something should be left alone. The next logical step for this company is to then begin the screening process to keep out what the Boss says is not within their values. This includes employees and patrons. And the problem us gays have with being accepted is not because we are sticking up for our rights. It is because people like you dont want us to have any of the basic rights you enjoy. Such as the right to love the person you want AND to marry them. I have no problem with straight people showing affection in public. Do you have a problem with a gay couple showing the same kind of affection in public? So where in what I have said is MY intolerance?
Native July 24, 2012 at 07:11 PM
Once again, horse$%&*! The man has every right to express his opinion. He has done nothing discriminatory. If & when he does, then you all can complain till you are blue in the face. Till then, all you are doing is furthering the divide. Persecuting the man for his opinion is not sticking up for YOUR rights. And you have NO idea how I feel about you, so don't even try changing the subject to that road! Your intolerance is not accepting the man's right to have an opinion!
Amy McKenna Gilford July 24, 2012 at 07:19 PM
This is a privately owned company. Just as Starbucks, JC Penny (whose stock has been decimated bec of their stance), Office Depot and General Mills are aggressively promoting the redefinition of marriage, CFA has the right to defend it.
vanyel1967 July 24, 2012 at 07:59 PM
When the man states that it is his COMPANY's opinion that is where the problem comes in. By stating that the COMPANY believes this then it becomes discrimination. Also. If the man said that his COMPANY did not believe that a person who is of mixed decent should not be given the right to marry EVERYONE would be up in arms for that. But because it is gay people it is ok?
vanyel1967 July 24, 2012 at 08:13 PM
I am sorry to inform you that JC Penny's stock was way down before their stance due to their bad choice in clothing buyers. This is backed up by several news sources and by the company itself.
Native July 24, 2012 at 08:42 PM
No it doesn't. If there is no action (refusal to serve, etc.), there is no broken law. What you are saying is that someone should be vilified for a belief. THAT is discrimination!
McDaniel Student July 24, 2012 at 09:22 PM
Everybody has a right to defend whatever they want, they also have a right to not spend their money somewhere. Cool, CFA has an opinion and donate some proceeds to groups that support their opinion. Business should have opinions sometimes. However, I personally disagree with that opinion, (which is just my opinion mind you) and therefore I will not be going to any CFA's untill their policy changes. Anybody can be upset with anybody and anybody can work to change an opinion. Also, Native, I'm pretty sure that "the gays" are not being "intolerant" if a man publicly denounces one of their human rights and they react this way.
Native July 24, 2012 at 09:31 PM
Kudos Student, that's a very mature approach to the issue. If you don't like the company, don't spend money there. Exactly what I've been trying to get across. Don't have kneejerk reactions such as Boston's mayor that's threatening to deny Chick-Fil-A their right to open stores there.
Kathy July 25, 2012 at 11:39 AM
I support gay marriage and civil rights for gay citizens, however in this case there has been no discrimination reported either against employees or customers--the head of the Company has the right to his opinion, and customers have the right to refuse to spend money there. It would however be unlawful discrimination if a town pulled the license of one of these places because of the expressed opinions of the private citizen that happens to run the company. It is not discrimination for me to refuse to eat there, any more than it is discrimination if I choose not to watch a TV program that I think is offensive. Not every action is a political statement.
John D. Witiak July 25, 2012 at 12:42 PM
I agree with Kathy and I stand in the growing line of Christians and folks of other religions and philosophies who recognize that human beings to love one another is universal and like heterosex marriage, same sex marriage is an expression of that love.
Robin Nicole July 25, 2012 at 12:53 PM
When I first moved to Maryland I couldn't understand the obsession with Chick-Fil-A. Then I went, and I REALLY couldn't understand it. They use peanut oil for everything! I wasn't spending a dime there for that reason. Even if that wasn't an issue, I still wouldn't spend any of my money there. Counter a moral objection by simply not frequenting their store. By the way, Hobby Lobby is the same way - at least with their open Christian orientation. Not sure about their stand on marriage rights. Same for Forever 21 (which I find wickedly ironic, given the skankiness of their clothing).
WestMonster July 25, 2012 at 01:40 PM
Lots of good points here. While it may not have been the smartest business move for Mr. Cathy to present this stance on behalf of his company, he's perfectly within his rights to do so. IF that means people who support homosexual marriage want to stop supporting the company, that's what America is all about. IF CFA starts a policy of not hiring or serving people they think are homosexuals, then there's discrimination. If the company is run by people truly adhering to Christ's guidance, their stance on marriage shouldn't change their treatment of employees or customers, as people are all to be loved and treated equally (whether gay, straight, black, white, old, or young...) Mr. Witiak: Christians are directed to love everyone, but the type of love that includes physical intimacy is reserved for heterosexual couples.
John D. Witiak July 25, 2012 at 04:12 PM
West, you are are welcome to select any part of the Bible as you wish as God's truth; I don't accept its parts about slavery, that imply a woman is not equal to a man, that a woman should not be in control of her body, that divorce is never a moral option or, or that same sex love and marriage are evil. The US is not a theocracy.
WestMonster July 25, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Thanks John, I'll take all the parts as God's truth. Some people don't interpret or imply what they are reading with common sense and that's where you get radicals. I think the Bible's pretty clear on this topic, but that certainly doesn't mean I should treat homosexuals any differently, and that was my point. They're people that God created, and should be loved just like anyone else.
John D. Witiak July 25, 2012 at 05:05 PM
Ahh, yes, common sense. I could not be in greater agreement with you on that point, my friend. But where does our common sense come into play when a God fearing organization I have always and still do support discriminates against boys who are gay? What seeds of a future Holocaust are being planted in young minds?
Robin Nicole July 25, 2012 at 07:18 PM
Well WestMonster, if you take all the parts then you believe in Polygamy and slavery as well, correct?
Dave July 25, 2012 at 10:25 PM
I say Horay for Chick-fil-A! If you don't care for their mission statement, don't eat there! ALL I know is, when I eat there, there is always a line out the door, waiting to be served. Mr Cathy is entitled to his beliefs and opinions, just like the homosexuals. I think the militant attitude of the gay community is responsible for some of the backlash by people like Mr. Cathy.
Gr8Minds July 26, 2012 at 02:42 PM
Hey Kim, why doesn't your survey allow an option to agree with CFA and say they will still be a customer?
Jackie Schrenker-Case July 27, 2012 at 02:21 AM
It is okay to boycott Disney for having the Ellen bookshop at MGM and being one of the first large businesses to provide benefits to employees and their partners, inclusive. But it is not okay to boycott a company whose ceo speaks condemnation of of a particular lifestyle or people....seems awfully hypocritical to me. He does have the right to speak what he believes, if he speaks it as a representative of a company, then I have the right to spend my money elsewhere. Yes, I am intolerant of intolerance.
Native July 27, 2012 at 02:29 AM
Not sure what you're saying Jackie. No one is saying it's not ok to boycott. Quite the contrary, that's what should be done if you disagree with the CEO. What is wrong is all the cries of discrimination & vilification of the man, just for having an opinion. No laws were broken yet all kinds of fool politicians & hollywood types have jumped on the bandwagon. Of course, a day later they're all backpedaling after having been told how stupid they are.
Cheryl Abbott July 28, 2012 at 01:03 PM
How could it not be a hostile workplace for homosexuals? While it may not be legal for Boston to block permits, it was kind of them to clearly state they don't want bigots in their city, like CFA was kind to let us know they are bigots and proud of it. I don't understand this type of hatred. I will spend my money elsewhere.
Native July 28, 2012 at 01:48 PM
And that's up to you & it's ok. But, you've completely missed the point. Homosexuals have to realise that there are people that disagree with their lives. So what? Your post is clearly intolerant & you madam are a bigot to infer that anyone with an opinion in conflict with yours is wrong!
Lisa Haderman July 29, 2012 at 06:26 PM
I believe the ENTIRE BIBLE AS GODS WORD not just some parts.I am a Christian & believe that Gods word says it is immoral/unnatural for a woman to lie with a woman & a man to lie down with a man.If God intended us to live that way HE would Created Adam & Steve Not Adam & EVE...God even say in HIS WORD That No one is to Rewrite ,leave things out etc & HE Will judge us all..LOOK WHAT HAPPENED AT SODOM & GOMOORAH HE DESTROYED THE WHOLE TOWN FOR ALL THE EVIL IN IT.EITHER YOU BELIEVE IT ALL NOT PARTS TO SUITE YOUR NEEDS.A TRUE CHRISTIAN BELIEVES ALL OF IT. I BELIEVE MY GOD And I SUPPORT CHICK FIL A FOR STANDING UP FOR CHRISTIAN VALUES.. I WILL BE THERE TO BUY FROM MR CATHY'S COMPANY...
dugAhole July 29, 2012 at 08:26 PM
This man has the right to say want he wants, I have to right to not buy his Bigoted crap anymore. Holier than thou and know it alls are always pushing their crap down others throats.
Dave July 29, 2012 at 10:25 PM
I see now! Anyone who dares to have a point of view different than yours is a bigot? The only reason you are able to comment is because your parents weren't homosexual! Maybe they met at CFA?
Dave July 29, 2012 at 10:30 PM
You mean like the way Rosie O'donnel and Elen Degeneris and a host of other celebrities do on national television to advance their own personal agenda?


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