Fast-food chain Chick-fil-A came out publicly against gay marriage this week.
“Well, guilty as charged,” Chick-fil-A president Dan Cathy told the Baptist Press when asked about the company's support of families led only by a man and a woman.
“We are very much supportive of the family -- the biblical definition of the family unit,” Cathy said. “We are a family-owned business, a family-led business, and we are married to our first wives.” Despite saying that the company operates on "biblical principles," he was careful to avoid calling it a Christian business.
Cathy's statement confirms what the company has indicated for many years. Chick-fil-A has reportedly donated several million dollars to groups such as the Family Research Council and Marriage and Family Foundation, both of which oppose marriage rights for the LGBT community and recommend reparative therapy for homosexuals. Last year the company came under fire for its sponsorship of the Pennsylvania Family Institute's marriage seminar, which banned same-sex couples.
The fast-food chain's stance on gay marriage has been met with protests on college campuses including Northeastern University, where the student senate struck down a proposed Chick-fil-A opening, and New York University, where a student started a position to close the on-campus branch.
While the company's position might be applauded by like-minded customers, it is sure to drive away many others who stand on the other side of the issue. If the political tide continues to turn in favor of gay marriage, companies like Chick-fil-A will be left looking outdated and prejudiced.
In his interview, Cathy repeatedly emphasized the company's support of families. If that's true, why not support causes that benefit all families, not just those following biblical values? It'd be a welcome change to see Chick-fil-A throw its money and words behind an organization that helps lift families out of poverty, for example, rather than adding to a divisive, virulent political debate.