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Boston Mayor Angered Over Food Franchise Head’s Anti-Gay Stance; NOM Cheers

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Monday Jul 23, 2012
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Boston’s mayor says he will ban Chick-fil-A from opening in the city after the fast-food chain’s president denounced gay marriage earlier this week.

The Boston Herald reported that Mayor Thomas Menino promises to block Chick-fil-A from opening a restaurant in Boston because of the anti-gay marriage comments that Dan Cathy, the company’s president, made in an interview.

"I think 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,’" Cathy said. "And I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about."

Mayor Menino wasn’t pleased with Cathy’s remarks and said Chick-fil-A is not welcome in the city.

"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."

After Cathy made his initial statements he told the Baptist Press that he is "guilty as charged" when it comes to his views on marriage equality.

"We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives. We give God thanks for that," Cathy told the publication.
Officials from the restaurant chain released a statement and said the business follows biblically based values, such has being closed on Sundays.

"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 reads. "Going forward, our intent is to leave the policy debate over same-sex marriage to the government and political arena."

The statement has not satisfied Menino, who says he plans on writing a letter to the fast food company’s headquarters, which is based in Atlanta.

"If they need licenses in the city, it will be very difficult - unless they open up their policies," he warned.

The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), a group that is bent on outlawing same-sex marriage throughout the country and urges companies to take a natural stance on LGBT issues, applauded Cathy’s remarks in a blog post that had the headline "President of Chick-Fil-A Proud to Stand for Biblical and Family Values."

Although many took to social media websites like FaceBook and Twitter to slam Cathy for his remarks (including "The Office" actor Ed Helms), CNN points out that many of its online readers supported the businessman and "his right to say and believe what he wants."

"We shouldn’t be surprised that an organization that sticks to its Christian principles would have issues with gay marriage," one reader says. "We can’t get into this mentality of thinking that everybody who is against gay marriage is homophobic in some way, shape or form," the added.

"I’m gay. I don’t care. If I ceased buying products from companies that did things I didn’t like, then I’d be Amish," another online user wrote. "I don’t make political choices when I eat out (though, for the record, I actually don’t like CFA’s food or any fast food for that matter). I go out to eat to fill my belly."

Chick-fil-A has been criticized for its anti-gay views in the past. In March, a number of students from colleges around the nation protested the restaurant from coming to their campuses. In 2009, it was reported that the company donated $2 million to anti-gay groups, including Focus on the Family, Exodus International and Family Research Council.

Northeastern University, located in Boston, was one of the schools that voted to block Chick-fil-A from coming to its campus. But New York University students failed to have the college’s officials remove the restaurant from its campus, which happens to be the only Chick-fil-A in Manhattan.

Comments

  • russell cluff, 2012-07-23 10:20:10

    Good for the mayor to stand up and say "not in my city" I applaud him! While I had not had plans to visit his city I think I may need to. Its amazing for someone in politics to stand up and say no to corp america and protect the people he was voted in for rather then just focus on that green dollar bill!


  • Anonymous, 2012-07-23 10:48:57

    Wow, it is so impressive to see a mayor with a pair. All we’ve had for a number of years have been talking heads with sound bite "etched-a-sketch" convictions. Thank you Mayor Menino.


  • Anonymous, 2012-07-23 11:44:15

    When is the mayor going to shut down all muslim businesses since muslims do not believe in gay marriage and believe that homosexuality should be treated with death?


  • Anonymous, 2012-07-23 13:04:19

    Way to go Boston!


  • Marc , 2012-07-23 14:50:17

    Hell no. I don’t like the position the company made. But government should not be able to ban a business in a free society over speech. What if a mayor in a different wanted to ban a pro gay marriage business?


  • Marc , 2012-07-23 15:04:01

    This is reverse bullying. Chick-fil-A has no policy of discrimination against customers or employees. If the tryst to block their permits over speech, they should back down. Chick-fil-A should fight this in court.


  • Anonymous, 2012-07-23 19:29:52

    It’s about time someone stood up to corporate fascism. I support Mayor Menino and the boycott 100%. To hell with Jesus Chicken.


  • Anonymous, 2012-07-23 20:34:51

    Of course some ’gay uncle tom’ would say something dumb like that. After all, the four members of GOProud are still around...And, good for the mayor for demonstrating higher morals than the fried chicken president.


  • Virgilio F. Acevedo, 2012-07-24 16:52:31

    You are free to express your opinion in the USA. As an elected leader, Mayor Menino is free to use the law to grant permits to businesses that openly believe that not everyone is equal. In Boston we strive hard to achieve that ideal. Our mayor has the full support of the majority of the people here. Northeastern University students in Boston voted last year to deny permission to the same company to open in its student center --and for the same reason. Oh, and regarding "the Muslims" commentary... first, the comment on death for homosexuals is a gross generalization (Christian pastors in the South want us to be in concentration camps to die; most Christians do not share that). Secondly, whoever already has legal permits in Boston (including the Muslims and the Christians), well, they already have the permits. What can you legally do now?


  • Anonymous, 2012-07-24 18:18:06

    Good for Mayor Menino for taking a strong stand in support of marriage equality. As for people like Mr. Cathy and the National Organization for Restricting Marriage, if you want marriage defined only by your religious beliefs, you are also discriminating against people and groups, including many Christians, who do not share your religious beliefs. If you want the laws of the country defined by your religious group, then you first must campaign to have your religious beliefs constitutionally enshrined as a state religion. Do what you believe in your church, but do not force others to follow your beliefs.


  • Wendell Wallace, 2012-07-26 07:55:42

    I am so grateful to live in a state that gets it. First, all of these biblical followers should do their research as to how the bible was compiled. Then MAYBE they would see that it was used by kings as a tool to control (i.e. have power over) the people. Therefore the beliefs of a few MEN (no women) determined what is in the bible. The real problem here is ignorance!


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