There are calls for a nationwide boycott of the chicken restaurant chain Chick-Fil-A because of its apparent stance against gay marriage. The New York Times revealed that one of the chain's restaurants was catering a marriage seminar held by the notoriously anti-gay Pennsylvania Family Institute.
Chick-Fil-A makes no secret that it has Christian leanings. Company’s president Dan Cathy said in a statement, "Chick-Fil-A's corporate purpose is 'To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us, and to have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-Fil-A.'"
When word leaked of the chain's involvement with the marriage seminar, the blogosphere lit up. Many called for a boycott, while students at some universities are attempting to get restaurants thrown off campus.
The company's Facebook forum became a battleground, while an online petition asking Chick-Fil-A to stop supporting such groups had got 25,000 signatures.
After seeing all of this, the company relented.
"As a result, we will not champion any political agendas on marriage and family. This decision has been made, and we understand the importance of it," Cathy's statement said.
However, he did add that the company would "continue to offer resources to strengthen marriages and families. To do anything different would be inconsistent with our purpose and belief in Biblical principles."
Michael Geer, president of the Pennsylvania Family Institute, said that Chick-Fil-A had been unfairly singled out for "being good neighbors." He added, "People should applaud institutions that want to strengthen marriage."
Chick-Fil-A was started in 1946 by devout Southern Baptist S. Truett Cathy, who is now 89. The company has remained in his family, and still reflects his strong beliefs.
For example, all of the restaurants are closed on Sundays, and potential employees have to disclose their marital status and talk about their religion before they can be hired.