Boycott Chick fil-A, Don’t Give Your Money to Bigots

From The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/30/us/30chick.html?_r=2

A Chicken Chain’s Corporate Ethos Is Questioned by Gay Rights Advocates

By KIM SEVERSON
Published: January 29, 2011

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Nicknamed “Jesus chicken” by jaded secular fans and embraced by Evangelical Christians, Chick-fil-A is among only a handful of large American companies with conservative religion built into its corporate ethos. But recently its ethos has run smack into the gay rights movement. A Pennsylvania outlet’s sponsorship of a February marriage seminar by one of that state’s most outspoken groups against homosexuality lit up gay blogs around the country. Students at some universities have also begun trying to get the chain removed from campuses.

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Because the company remains privately held — his two sons run it — it can easily keep its faith-based principles intact. The company’s corporate purpose is, in part, “to glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us.”

With its near-national reach and its transparent conservative Christian underpinnings, Chick-fil-A is a trailblazer of sorts, said Lake Lambert, the author of “Spirituality, Inc.” and dean of the college of liberal arts at Mercer University, where he teaches Christianity.

“They’re going in a direction we haven’t seen in faith-based businesses before, and that is to a much broader marketing of themselves and their products,” he said. “This is possibly the next phase of evangelical Christianity’s muscle flexing.”

The company’s Christian culture and its strict hiring practices, which require potential operators to discuss their marital status and civic and church involvement, have attracted controversy before, including a 2002 lawsuit brought by a Muslim restaurant owner in Houston who said he was fired because he did not pray to Jesus with other employees at a training session. The suit was settled.

The sandwiches that will feed people who attend a February seminar, called “The Art of Marriage: Getting to the Heart of God’s Design,” in Harrisburg, Pa., are but a tiny donation.

Over the years, the company’s operators, its WinShape Foundation and the Cathy family have given millions of dollars to a variety of causes and programs, including scholarships that require a pledge to follow Christian values, a string of Christian-based foster homes and groups working to defeat same-sex marriage initiatives.

Complete article at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/30/us/30chick.html?_r=2

From The Atlanta Journal Constitution: http://www.ajc.com/business/chick-fil-a-counters-821566.html

A variety of complaints against the Atlanta-based company coalesced this month. There was the decision by a Chick-fil-A operator in Pennsylvania to supply food to an event sponsored by the Pennsylvania Family Institute, which has worked to defeat gay marriage initiatives and has become a lightning rod for gay rights groups. There was a blogger’s contention that Chick-fil-A’s WinShape Foundation does not admit gay couples to marriage counseling.

For some gay activists, these are just more reasons to avoid the company’s chicken sandwiches and conservative ways.

“Chick-fil-A can sponsor who they want. It’s a free country,” said Will Kohler, administrator of a gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender blog called back2stonewall.com. “But they shouldn’t get upset when they get found out supporting issues and ideas that discriminate against a section of their customers.”

Complete article at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/30/us/30chick.html?_r=2

Don’t Sleep With the Enemy and Don’t Give the Enemy Your Money

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