Despite promises from Chick-fil-A spokespeople that the company was ending its involvement in political issues and would no longer fund anti-gay groups, CEO Dan Cathy confirmed the restaurant chain is still serving up a big order of anti-gay sentiment with its signature waffle fries.
Mike Huckabee, who organized August’s Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day posted on his website:
I talked earlier today personally with Dan Cathy, CEO of Chick Fil-A about the new reports that Chick Fil-A had capitulated to demands of the supporters of same sex marriage. This is not true. The company continues to focus on the fair treatment of all of its customers and employees, but to end confusion gave me this statement:
“There continues to be erroneous implications in the media that Chick-fil-A changed our practices and priorities in order to obtain permission for a new restaurant in Chicago. That is incorrect. Chick-fil-A made no such concessions, and we remain true to who we are and who we have been.”
After working with the chain and Illinois’ Civil Rights Agenda, Chicago Alderman Joe Moreno said he was assured the company would no longer stand in the way of equality. (Moreno had threatened to block a new Chick-Fil-A franchise in his district if the company kept it up.)
And apparently Chick-fil-A also held several meetings with Campus Pride, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, resulting in the college LGBT group suspending its “education campaign” about the chain’s donations:
Shane Windmeyer, executive director of Campus Pride, paid his most recent visit to Chick-fil-A headquarters in Atlanta last Monday, after which he announced the suspension of his group’s campaign.
Windmeyer said he, too, was given a chance to preview Chick-fil-A’s new hiring and service policy. He, too, was offered evidence that the company’s WinShape Foundation no longer gives money to groups considered hostile to gay rights.
“Chick-fil-A has treated myself and my organization with dignity and respect. They really have been willing to sit down and dialogue. It hasn’t been an adversarial relationship,” Windmeyer said.
Those are words that Chick-fil-A is no doubt eager to have bronzed. But more important is the fact that Windmeyer said Chick-fil-A President Dan Cathy was personally involved in the negotiations, in both face-to-face meetings and telephone conversations.
Either Cathy and his board aren’t on the same page or Moreno and Windmeyer were given a lot of meaningless lip service: When everyone was announcing a ceasefire, Cathy was tweeting a photo from a motorcycle ride benefiting anti-marriage-equality efforts.
Are we angry at Chick-fil-A for either lying or not knowing its ass from its elbow? Sure, but we’re more angry at Moreno and Windmeyer, who shouldn’t have been so quick to pat themselves on the back.
For the rest of you: don’t let your craving for some dried-out poultry keep you from being vigilant. It is so not worth the calories.