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.
The donation has some fans cheering and others forcing themselves to balance their food desires against their personal beliefs.
"Does loving Chick-fil-A make you a bad gay?" said Rachel Anderson of Berkeley, Calif. "Oh, golly, human beings have an amazing capacity to justify a lot of things." Ms. Anderson has been with her partner for 15 years. They married in California during the brief period when same-sex marriage was legal in 2008. They have 7-year-old twins. A visit to her spouse's family in North Carolina always includes a trip to the chicken chain.
But as she learns more about the company, Ms. Anderson is wavering about where to eat when they travel to Charlotte in April.
"I'm going to have to sit with this a little bit," she said.
The recent controversy prompted the President of Chick-Fil-A to issue a statement on the company's Facebook page:
Heartfelt hospitality is at the core of Chick-Fil-A. We want a welcome and comforting environment for all of our guests, and this commitment is a daily focus. Some recent events have called into question the principles of Chick-Fil-A, and speak directly to the heart of our organization. . . . Let me be clear: Chick-Fil-A serves all people, and values all people.
In this statement, Dan T. Cathy articulates a core tenet of his Christian faith: Each and every person is made in the image of God, and therefore possesses inherent worth, value, and dignity. This principle ensures that every Chick-Fil-A customer will be treated graciously and with respect, regardless of his or sexual orientation or anything else. Unfortunately this isn't good enough for the proponents of our-culturalism. So long as the company and its employees embrace the Christian faith, they will be labeled as an intolerant force of hatred.
Given the recent focus on a need for renewed civility in public discourse, it is unfortunate that some within the homosexual community are attempting to stir up rancor and controversy where none need exist – that the same people who hold themselves up as defenders of tolerance are so intolerant themselves that they would destroy the good name and reputation of a respected business because of a disagreement over sexual morality.
So much for tolerance.